Citi now expects only a handful of London job losses

Following concerns of major job losses in London as a result of Brexit, Citi Bank are now expected to keep the majority of it’s workforce in the UK with fewer moving to European hubs than expected.

Citi Bank building in London
Citi Bank will move some roles from London to Frankfurt because of Brexit, but will retain the vast majority of its 9,000-strong workforce in the UK, a senior executive has said.

UK job losses expected to be minimal

Alan Houmann, the US bank’s head of European government affairs and a senior member of TheCityUK, Britain’s main Brexit lobby group for financial services, said Citi would keep its UK workforce in place regardless of the outcome of Brexit negotiations, according to a report in the Mail Online.Expansion of its 350-strong Frankfurt office to a broker-dealer entity – which will be necessary if Britain loses the right to trade freely across Europe after Brexit – would require an extra 150 staff, he said. But most of these would be additional hires, rather than relocations. Those being required to move from London to Germany were likely to be a handful of senior staff.“We’re moving some roles and will create several,” Mr Houmann said. “Our goal is to be ready to serve our European clients and our plans are very much under way to do that.“Frankfurt makes a lot of sense for us. We know Germany well, we’ve been there for decades, know and have experience dealing with the regulator.”
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European financial hubs

Citi expects to see the new broker dealership beginning operations by the end of the year and is also expecting staff increases in Paris, Madrid, Milan, Amsterdam and Dublin. “We will also increase our presence (for private clients) in Luxembourg. We’re adding roles in countries where we believe it will benefit our clients,” Mr Houmann added.He said that the bank was happy with the way the financial sector was engaging with the UK government over Brexit negotiations. “We feel like we’re being heard. As an industry, and the committees I chair – we’ve done a ton of work, we’ve been producing reports, so we’re just churning out evidence in the hope that there’s such a thing as evidence-based policy making, and it’s all going to the appropriate people,” he said.“We’re relatively well placed when it comes to Brexit. We have almost 60 per cent of our EU employees already outside of the UK. Our bank chain is headquartered in Dublin and we’re already on the ground in 21 of the 27 EU countries.”

Brexit relocation projections lower than expected

Mr Houmann’s remarks came on the heels of comments from Jeremy Browne, the City of London’s EU envoy, who suggested banking, insurance and asset management job losses to the EU because of Brexit, might not be as heavy as initially feared.Mr Browne said UK-based firms opening new European hubs were looking for the least disruption possible. “It may end up for quite a lot of them being a bit less dramatic than it might appear,” he said. “I don’t think they are saying, ‘Shall we abandon London?’.”He said he expected the new European hubs to be staffed by hundreds, rather than the thousands initially projected. The City of London Corporation now expects the total of posts to be relocated from London to be between 5,000 and 13,000 of the 1.1 million people employed in the sector across Britain.
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