London can expect to lose its crown as the leading global centre for high finance this year amid a barrage of City job cuts, falling bonuses and competition from rival hubs led by New York, Hong Kong and Singapore, according to a study. By 2015 the explosion in jobs in Hong Kong will have pushed the Square Mile into third place on a league table of international financial centres, says the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR)... Such will be the rise in finance job numbers in the far east that London is expected to only narrowly employ more financial workers than Singapore, the region's number two financial centre, in three years' time, the CEBR predicts.
Its chief executive Douglas McWilliams painted a dire picture of the consequences for the wider UK economy, insisting that "the biggest loser from this is the taxman". He said: "Taking into account the loss of income from a much smaller City, from lower corporation tax, stamp duty and other city based taxes, I estimate that government revenues from the City in the current financial year are likely to be about £40bn compared with the £70bn which it received in 2007/08 at the peak of the cycle." The government faces a difficult balancing act as it seeks to defend London's place as a leading financial centre, and major tax revenue contributor, while at the same time navigating a passage to a more balanced economy.