Published On: Sun, Nov 12th, 2017

'We're at a CRITICAL MOMENT' Brexit fears mount for world's leading banks, warns City


The City’s policy chief Catherine McGuinness last night said Wall Street sees Brexit as a major threat to financial stability.

In a high-scale intervention, she wrote a letter to Chancellor Philip Hammond saying: “Fears of a disorderly Brexit are increasing.

“There are concerns that US jobs and global financial stability are threatened.”

She urged Mr Hammond, a fellow Remain campaigner, to end the “uncertainty” about the UK’s future access to the single market.

Ms McGuinness, who recently visited bankers in New York and Washington DC, said: “Uncertainty is translating into action.

“With the value of a transitional deal decreasing over time, —UK-based US companies are beginning to implement scalable contingency plans.

“These are reversible, but only up to the point where firms begin repapering contracts (maybe Q1 2018).

“One topic that continued to exercise all companies I met was future access to talent and the ability to move staff across borders post-March 2019.”

Speaking to the Sunday Times about her concerns, she added: “We are at a critical moment. 

“There needs to be progress in the next round of negotiations and a commitment to transition.

“It’s very important that we look beyond the divorce negotiations and think about the future relationship between the UK and the EU.

“There is a danger that in haggling over the cost of the divorce bill we are putting the tax revenue from the City in jeopardy.”

Earlier today, Brexit Secretary David Davis said the government will “take our time” to decide when to settle the divorce bill.

The figure has been estimated to be as high as £88bn (€100bn), and is a major source of tension between the two sides.

Mr Davis told the BBC: “British taxpayers would not want me to just come along and just give away billions of pounds.

“So we’ve been very, very careful, and it’s taking time and we will take our time to get to the right answer.”


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