Wealthy investors bet on London’s future strength

ULTRA high-net worth investors are backing London as the world’s most important financial centre in the decades ahead, according to a new survey of their intentions up to 2043.

Fleming Family & Partners today reveal the results of a poll of 90 families that collectively hold over £100bn in assets, suggesting the capital will remain the most popular place in the world for finance, and that property in London will continue to appreciate in value during the decades ahead.

London was the respondents’ favoured financial centre by some distance, with 56 per cent ranking it first for expected performance up to 2043, and 87 per cent putting it in their top three choices. Only Singapore came close as a competitor.

Nine out of 10 also say that prime London property will be a good investment, and the average price of a prime property in the centre of the city is expected to rise to £6m.

The same wealthy individuals think that equities, agriculture and private equity will also post strong returns over the next 30 years.

However, the survey also reveals concerns about potential political instability in the years ahead. Three quarters of those polled are more worried about political risk than they were five years ago.

Half also say that they expect another financial crisis within the next ten years, but attitudes are more positive towards Europe. Two third believe that the UK will still be an EU member in 2043, while 63 per cent expect the euro to survive.

They are also bullish about the strength of the US economy as a world force: four fifths suggest that the dollar will still be the world’s most popular reserve currency in three decades’ time.

However, a quarter now forecast a multipolar world with a travelling elite and no obvious centre of world economic or political strength.

Despite the recent sell-off of emerging market equities, high-income buyers still believe that this asset class will be one of the best-performing options over the next few decades.

Twenty-seven per cent ranked equities from developing economies as their most desirable investment.