London ranking under threat

LONDON’S ranking as a global financial hub could be overtaken by Shanghai in 10 years time, according to a survey published yesterday.

Over 600 executives in London, New York, Shanghai, Mumbai and Dubai were questioned about business confidence in the “Boom or Gloom?” report by law firm Eversheds.

New York will remain top dog in 10 years time, but London could be edged out of second place by up and coming Shanghai, respondents said.

Only 17 per cent gave London a top ranking in financial significance in the medium term, compared to 22 per cent for Shanghai. Only one in five were confident about the UK’s position to grow.

However, critics argued the survey questioned over 300 executives in the middle and far east, compared to fewer than 200 in London and New York. It also took place just before Dubai’s debt crisis arose.

Evershed’s publication follows threats from many City firms to leave London after the government’s announcement of a 50 per cent super tax on bankers’ bonuses last week.

Shanghai had the highest proportion of respondents saying there was too much regulation at 29 per cent, but another third said businesses need more regulation for protection.

Only three per cent of London executives said there was not enough regulation in the UK.

With economies recovering at different speeds after the financial crisis, London and Shanghai are likely to draw knifes over second place, said Eversheds chairman, Alan Jenkins.

“The level of confidence in the east, particularly in Mumbai, is in stark contrast to the traditional powerhouses of New York and London.”