The City is strengthening partnerships with countries outside the EU as it embarks on a post-Brexit transformation, reveals a new study released today.
The US has overtaken the continent as the top destination for UK financial services exports for the first time ever, according to the Square Mile’s chief lobby group TheCityUK.
City firms conducted 34.2 per cent of their international business with Wall Street giants, larger than the 30 per cent exported to EU companies.
In 2020, the first year after Britain left the EU, UK financial services net exports rose, underlining the City’s position as a linchpin in the global finance industry despite concerns Brexit would reduce the attractiveness of doing business with London finance firms.
The City’s trade surplus topped £79bn in 2020, up from around £73bn in the previous year.
The strong export figures also demonstrate the City has held up well during the pandemic despite the global economy taking heavy fire from the Covid-19 crisis.
Anjalika Bardalai, chief economist and head of research at TheCityUK, said: “Hosting one of the world’s leading financial centres provides widespread economic benefits right across the UK.”
“The industry is a national asset,” she added.
British financial services exports to the EU dipped 6.6 per cent over the last year to £24.7bn.
However, this hit to trade with businesses on the continent was offset by City firms forging partnerships with companies outside the EU.
Exports to non-EU countries jumped 4.1 per cent to £57.7bn over the same period, according to TheCityUK.
London’s booming private equity market, top class banking sector and vibrant fintech scene have been crucial factors in maintaining the City’s position as a global finance hub after Brexit.
The UK private equity market is the deepest in the world outside the US, with assets nearing £30bn. London’s banking sector is by far the largest in Europe, with assets swelling to over £10 trillion.A combination of deep talent pools and a wealth of expertise “have helped boost the UK’s global position as a global FinTech leader,” TheCityUK added.