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London based financial services are a key part of the EU economic infrastructure
Finance in 2018 is people working in a global network of computers, talking to each other via a global telecommunication system. Firms can become a node in this system by paying the money to plug in, the Mizuho Financial Group could totally shut down their London operation Friday night and seamlessly re-open in Frankfurt or Dublin or Paris or all three together on Monday morning.
Physical location is almost irrelevant.
Regulatory location is absolutely relevant.
The City is 3 times larger than the UK economy needs or can support. The extra is there because it was easier to expand already existing offices handing Eurodollar business when the UK's $2.6 trillion (US) economy joined the EU's making a total $18.7 trillion (US) economy. Further, while the EU economy will no doubt take a hit the cost of Brexit to the UK economy will be staggering meaning the UK will need even less Finance. Since the Finance firms are looking being locked-in to an ever shrinking $2.6 trillion economy or being locked-out of a $16.1 trillion economy ... the decision becomes easy.
Now throw in the standard - Patent Pending, all Rights Reserved - May governmental incompetence
Yes, London's financial services are currently a key part of the EU's economic infrastructure that won't last 3 seconds past Brexit. In fact I expect firms to continue shifting their operations to EU sites.
Note: Goldman Sachs pronouncements of staying are, IMO, being driven by the fact they are building a .1 million square foot office in London scheduled to open in 2019. And despite what GS said in the previous quote:
Goldman said on Monday that Brexit could "materially adversely affect" how it operates businesses in Europe and could require it to restructure some of its operations.
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