A third of workers in the financial services sector think there is a strong chance their employer could move operations out of the UK after Brexit. A survey of thousands of financial services workers has revealed that 31% of them think their employer might move operations out of the UK as a result of Brexit, which would see thousands of IT jobs at risk in London.
The UK has a huge financial services sector, with the London economy highly dependent on a large number of banks. Under the prospect of Brexit, however, banks could lose their rights to trade across Europe through a system known as passporting, and might choose to relocate to one of the EU’s member countries.
If banks leave the UK, it would have a huge impact on IT recruitment, which has already been decimated by the offshoring of IT jobs by banks. Areas such as Luxembourg might be attractive, as well as Dublin and even Scotland if Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon’s efforts to keep Scotland in the EU succeed. Much depends on what comes of negotiations between the UK and the EU.
“[If banks retain passporting rights], London remains the global centre it always has been and nothing changes. If [Europe removes passporting rights], then most banks will need to relocate to Europe and will probably choose Dublin,” Chris Skinner, chairman of Financial Services Club said in a June 2016 blog post, just after the result of the referendum on the UK’s EU membership.