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Paris neck-and-neck with Frankfurt in Brexit race - French lobbyist

Reuters  |  PARIS 

By Jones

(Reuters) - is now neck-and-neck with in the race to lure jobs from the City of financial district ahead of Britain's exit from the European Union, a senior French said on Thursday.

The German financial capital was seen as leading the pack since Britain's 2016 vote to leave the bloc in March next year, triggering contingency planning by banks, insurers and asset managers in who need an EU base after Brexit.

Banks have been applying for licences in Frankfurt, home of their supervisor, the European Central Bank, the euro zone's single most powerful institution.

But Arnaud de Bresson, executive of Europlace, which promotes the French capital as a destination for financial businesses, says that has now caught up with its German rival.

"Paris, since last October, has seen stronger growth due to new announcements from financial firms," de Bresson told

Up to 4,000 job moves to have been announced by companies including HSBC, Lynch, and JPMorgan, as well as asset managers, he said.

"We are now at the same level as and more than other centres," de Bresson said.

There has been no independent verification by a neutral third party of total job numbers in Brexit-related moves to or

Lobbyists and banking executives have also said that potential for a softer Brexit is discouraging immediate action, meaning that the two cities could receive a trickle rather than a wave of bankers in 2018.

An expected transition period before Brexit, which will expire in 2020, could also give the chance to catch up with Frankfurt, which had been the most popular among banks looking for an EU base.


Frankfurt's promoter, Hubertus Vaeth, had expected up to 6,000 new arrivals in Germany's financial capital this year in the event of a hard Brexit. Vaeth recently said he has now pared back that assessment to less than 1,000.

Initially, had signalled it could move up to 4,000 jobs from its large operation to Frankfurt, but this has now been scaled back to a few hundred -- initially at least.

The EU's surprise decision to choose as the new home for its EBA banking watchdog, currently based in London, was also a bonus for the city. The bloc's securities watchdog ESMA is already located in and the EU has proposed giving it more powers.

"We believe the big decisions are still in front of us. This figure is just a milestone in the road," de Bresson said.

More significant "rebalancing", or job moves from to Paris, is in the pipeline, he added, citing an expected acceleration of demand for licences with the market authorities but declining to name specific companies.

De Bresson sees the combination of Brexit and the "political revolution" of labour and tax reforms from as helping to attract firms.

The City of and bankers, meanwhile, have cautioned that talk of a "Brexodus" is wrong and that companies will only move what they are required to do so by continental regulators to obtain a licence.

The Bank of England, which has said it was plausible that 10,000 financial jobs could move from Britain to the EU by Brexit Day, maintains that is the for

De Bresson said that is looking to replicate some of the services provided from by focusing on attracting capital market operations such as private placements, commercial paper and corporate bond issuance as companies turn to markets rather than banks for funding.

(Reporting by Jones; Additional reporting by John O'Donnell; Editing by David Goodman)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, February 15 2018. 21:26 IST