Much gnashing of teeth about the threat to London as a financial centre at the Merchant Taylors’ on Tuesday night.
Forgive me if Banquo doesn’t get too alarmed. London’s status has been under threat since the Hanseatic league, and funnily enough its market share keeps on growing.
London’s preeminence is built on much more than “light touch regulation”. More regulation won’t help London, relative to New York or Geneva, but the expertise to develop and manage within that new regulatory framework exists in London. Each new regulation will spawn a new business line. Reg Q lead gave us Eurobonds, Basel II was the mother and father of shadow banking. The worst outcome for London and markets generally is a prolonged period of uncertainty. If Monsieur Michel Barnier brings some French dirigisme to the overhaul of regulation London and its European hinterland should cheer.
Banquo is still an active investor so will declare his financial interest where appropriate in any blog post.