- REUTERS/Eddie Keogh
- European bankers are leaving London in an “exodus”, a senior Bank of England official claims.
- Iain McCafferty said the number of Europeans moving to the city has “fallen very sharply” since the 2016 referendum.
LONDON – Bankers from the EU are leaving the City in an “exodus” according to Iain McCafferty, a senior official at the Bank of England
McCafferty told Britain’s LBC in an interview on Tuesday that the number of German, French, and other European bankers coming to work in the City has “fallen very sharply” since the 2016 referendum.
“The number of foreign bankers coming to London has fallen very sharply over the course of the last couple of years or so,” he said. “As they return to their native countries, they are not being replaced in anything like the same numbers.”
McCafferty, who is a member of the bank’s monetary policy committee, added that Europeans leaving London are pushing down property and rent prices as they relocate from the capital back to their home countries, as demand for housing drops.
McCafferty did not provide any statistics to support his claims of EU bankers leaving or their effects on the London housing market.
Analysts and economists have warned since the referendum that Brexit was likely to lead to a reduction in the number of banking jobs in the UK. A recent report by the City of London estimated that 5,000 jobs will be lost due to Britain’s exit from the EU.
LBC presenter Iain Dale questioned whether McCaffery was playing into “project fear” by making the comments.
Brexiteers have criticised the Bank of England for what they have dubbed “project fear”, claiming the central bank has been overly negative about the economic effects of Brexit. Tory MP Jacob Rees Mogg recently called BoE Governor Mark Carney the “high priest of project fear,” after Carney warned that a no deal Brexit was highly undesirable.
Dale said: “You’ve used the word exodus, which to my mind means a massive outflow of people… Isn’t that playing into the narrative that Brexiteers have of the Bank of England that all you’re interested in doing is playing project fear?”
McCaffery replied: “I don’t consider an exodus as a massive outflow of people; I consider it an outflow and that’s what we have seen.”
While London’s housing market has suffered since the referendum, on June 25 Boston Consulting and TotalJobs released a study that named London as the most attractive destination for foreign workers, beating New York to the top spot despite the impacts of Brexit.