(Reuters) - With the terms of Britain’s exit from the European Union still hanging in the balance, international banks are setting up subsidiaries across the bloc to ensure they can continue to serve clients after next March.
As few as 630 UK-based finance jobs have been shifted or created overseas in response to the Brexit process, a far lower total than banks said could move after the surprise vote to leave the European Union two years ago.
Following are related stories about top banks’ moves to Brexit-proof their operations (in alphabetical order):
Germany's association of foreign banks expects here about 20 banks to expand their presence in Germany as a result of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.
Bank of America (BAC.N) is merging its London-based subsidiary with its Dublin-based Irish entity, which will become its main EU base.
Bank of America finished moving its banking and markets operations in Europe to a new base in Dublin from London, the bank said in December, after it received all necessary regulatory and court approvals.
Up to 400 jobs in Bank of America’s markets, trading, sales and fixed income teams would move from London to the EU and to Paris in particular, in a first wave of transfers next year.
The bank has spent $300 million to $400 million getting ready for a potential hard Brexit, Bloomberg reported in November.
Barclays (BARC.L) announced plans to shift up to 200 roles to the continent as part of its Brexit planning. In July it began switching 40 to 50 investment banking jobs from Britain to Frankfurt. The roles will technically be employed by the bank’s main European entity in Ireland. Chief Executive Jes Staley has said that the group will keep the bulk of its activities in Britain.
BNP Paribas (BNPP.PA) was expected to move up to 300 London investment bank staff because of Brexit, but a source told Reuters in November that the lender has estimated fewer than 90 of its UK-based bank staff will be affected. A number of them, mostly dealing with sales, will have to relocate to mainland Europe.
Citigroup (C.N) has opted to bolster its operations in Frankfurt, where its EU trading business will be based after Brexit.
The U.S. bank has also applied for a markets license and hired senior staff in France, while setting up a unit in Luxembourg to support its private bank. The Financial Times reported on.ft.com/2qG68kJ in November that the bank is scouting a larger Paris office.
Citigroup said in October it was planning to move 63 jobs out of London, as it prepares for the possibility of a hard Brexit. The U.S. bank has said it might need to create 150 new jobs in the EU and that it would move a “couple of hundred” jobs from London.
Bloomberg reported bloom.bg/2AqqUKW in October that Citigroup plans to move some private-banking roles to Madrid from London.
Citigroup is setting up a new British bank, headquartered in London, to house its UK consumer business after Brexit.
The investment banking unit of Credit Agricole (CAGR.PA) fine-tuned its projection, saying around 20 personnel will move from London to mainland Europe after originally estimating 100.The group was to move its European government bonds trading platform from London to Paris in September 2017.
Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) is set to make Madrid its post-Brexit trading hub in the European Union after initially planning to move only some investment banking jobs to the city from London, Bloomberg reported bloom.bg/2BCKlRt in November, citing people with knowledge of the matter.
The bank is expected to move about 50 investment bankers to Germany, 50 to Madrid, and up to 150 more to other European Union hubs including Luxembourg in the event of a hard Brexit. The lender has named Frankfurt, Madrid and Luxembourg as post-Brexit hubs.
Chief Executive Tidjane Thiam said last year that his bank was relatively well placed to deal with Brexit and that only 15-20 percent of volumes in the investment bank would be affected. Chairman Urs Rohner has compared Brexit preparations to open-heart surgery.
Daiwa Securities Group (8601.T) said it will set up a subsidiary in Frankfurt, which its head had previously touted as its favored destination as London-based staff could easily be transferred to its investment banking branch in the German city. The Japanese brokerage has said it would still keep staff in London even after Brexit.
Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE) said in September it would move assets from London to Frankfurt after Brexit, in line with demands from British and EU regulators. Deutsche Bank said it would make Frankfurt rather than London the primary booking hub for its investment banking clients.
According to a report by the Financial Times, Deutsche Bank could over time move about three quarters of its estimated 600 billion euros ($683.76 billion) in assets from London to Frankfurt.
According to a source close to the matter, Deutsche Bank is also considering transforming its UK arm into a smaller, less complex and ring-fenced subsidiary.
The bank has said hundreds of jobs will move from London rather than thousands. The now-former CEO John Cryan had said he expected to move far fewer than 4,000 jobs to Frankfurt.
Settlement bank Euroclear is opening a new unit in Ireland to avoid Brexit disrupting its ability to process Irish stock and bond transactions. While Euroclear Ireland and Euroclear UK would become legally separate entities, the aim is for both to continue using the existing CREST technical plumbing.
Euroclear is moving its holding company from London to Brussels.
The Irish Times reported here Euroclear is pushing authorities to allow it to continue settling Irish shares in Britain even in the event of a hard Brexit.
French banks may end up relocating significantly fewer staff than originally expected from London to mainland Europe after Brexit, banking officials said in November. [nL8N1XY3DI]
Sector analysts had forecast that France’s three biggest banks might relocate more than 500 staff combined from London to continental Europe, mostly to Paris, but the final numbers to be moved are likely to be significantly lower.
Goldman Sachs (GS.N) has expanded the number of staff moving to Frankfurt, Bloomberg reported in October.
The bank would have hubs in Frankfurt and Paris after Brexit and it would be up to the staff to decide where they want to move to from London, former CEO Lloyd Blankfein told French newspaper Le Figaro. Handelsblatt reported in January that Goldman Sachs was considering moving up to 1,000 staff to Frankfurt, with its chief in Germany Wolfgang Fink having said the bank could triple or quadruple its presence there.
Sweden’s Handelsbanken said it had converted its British branch into a subsidiary that would operate as a standalone business, helping to shield the bank from any potentially disruptive Brexit.
HSBC (HSBA.L) could spend up to $300 million moving jobs and parts of its business to Paris.
HSBC has shifted ownership of its Polish and Irish subsidiaries from its London-based entity to its French unit, and will do so for seven more European branches.
The bank said in August that it has not yet begun transferring any of the up to 1,000 staff it has said could ultimately move to its French unit from Britain.
Investec (INVP.L) (INLJ.J) is considering converting its London bank's Dublin branch into a subsidiary to ensure it has continued access to the European single market, Chief Executive Stephen Koseff told The Telegraph in May. However, the Anglo-South African lender and asset manager would see only a small part of its business affected by Brexit, the newspaper quoted Koseff as saying. (bit.ly/2qywZzY)
JPMorgan Chase (JPM.N) in July asked “several dozen” employees to lead a first wave of relocations from Britain to continental Europe by early 2019, beefing up its presence in other EU cities including Paris, Madrid and Milan.
Until then the Wall Street heavyweight was broadly expected to focus on expanding its Frankfurt, Luxembourg and Dublin bases, where it already holds banking licenses.
The bank said in September it will establish a wealth management business in Luxembourg and boost offerings at its investment banking and custody and fund businesses.
JPMorgan could move more than 4,000 jobs out of Britain if Brexit talks result in a divergence of regulations and trade agreements between Britain and the European Union, CEO Jamie Dimon said in a BBC interview in January. The biggest U.S. bank by assets said in July last year that the bank would probably use Frankfurt as the legal domicile of its European operations.
Swiss private bank Julius Baer (BAER.S) is moving its European hub from Frankfurt to Luxembourg but will continue to keep its options open in London. Julius Baer is opening three new UK offices as it looks to be the bank for wealthy residents spooked by Brexit.
Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L) is looking to set up a third European Union subsidiary in Luxembourg to serve longstanding life insurance customers after Britain quits the bloc. If its application is successful, Lloyds will have legal bases in Britain, Berlin, Frankfurt and the Duchy.
Lloyds has selected Berlin as its European hub post-Brexit and is hoping to have this ready by the end of the year.
Lloyds declined to give details on the amount of money it would need to capitalize its Frankfurt entity, but the sum required by the main Berlin subsidiary is expected to run to the “low hundreds of millions of pounds”.
Morgan Stanley (MS.N) has chosen Frankfurt to be a new base for its EU operations, a source familiar with the matter said, adding that 200 people could move. One source said the U.S. bank will have to move up to 1,000 jobs in sales and trading, risk management, legal and compliance, as well as slimming the back office in favor of locations overseas. Morgan Stanley also plans to add about 80 jobs in Paris, as it in common with other banks pursues a strategy of having one EU center as its base but boosting hires in other major financial hubs.
Japan’s Mizuho Financial Group (8411.T) said it would set up a subsidiary in Frankfurt, the latest Japanese bank to choose the German city as its new base in the European Union as Britain prepares to leave the bloc.
Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc (8306.T) has picked Amsterdam as its EU investment banking base and is considering opening a branch in Paris. It has also said it could move staff to other European hubs.
Nomura Holdings Inc (8604.T) is applying for a license to operate a new entity in Frankfurt.
Asset management company Northern Trust has said it will set up an EU banking base in Luxembourg. Around a third of Northern Trust’s institutional clients have asked it to ringfence British exposure from their broader European portfolios to protect them from Brexit-related risks.
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L) has set an extra 100 million pounds ($128.05 million) aside to account for possible bad loans as a result of Brexit uncertainty. The provision means RBS is concerned that its customers might become less able to pay their debts after Brexit.
RBS has said it may move up to around 150 jobs to Amsterdam after Brexit. RBS also said it was in talks with the Dutch central bank to use a license it has in the Netherlands to conduct some Natwest Markets business there if it becomes necessary.
Societe Generale’s (SOGN.PA) chief executive officer Frederic Oudea said in November that SocGen is ready in case of a hard Brexit scenario.
He had said earlier that the bank will wait for more clarity on Brexit before deciding whether to move staff away from London, CEO Frederic Oudea has said.
Oudea had previous said the bank could move 400 corporate and investment banking jobs from London, with most going to Paris. The bank has looked to hire “a member of a project team dedicated to the Brexit operational delivery execution stream”.
SocGen said it would apply for a third-country branch license with the UK financial regulator by early 2018.
Britain’s Standard Chartered (STAN.L) has started interviewing candidates for about 20 banking jobs it is moving to Frankfurt due to Brexit, the chief financial officer told Reuters in March.
Bloomberg reported bloom.bg/2A651QY in October that the bank was hiking Brexit job plans and that it was said to more than double the headcount in Frankfurt. The report added, citing sources, that Goldman Sachs and Standard Chartered recently expanded the number of staff moving to Frankfurt by April.
Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc (8316.T) said its core banking unit, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp has decided to set up a subsidiary in Frankfurt.
TD Securities, the investment banking arm of Toronto-Dominion Bank Group (TD.TO), said it would expand operations in Dublin to bolster its European business in response to uncertainty triggered by Brexit.
Brexit will not have a major impact on European Banks or London’s status as a major financial center, the chief executive of Italian bank UniCredit (CRDI.MI) said. UniCredit would only relocate a small number of people from London due to Brexit, CEO Jean Pierre Mustier said.
UBS (UBSG.S) told CNBC in November that it has prepared for a hard Brexit.
UBS had said in July that Brexit, which is prompting UBS to relocate some of its 5,000 staff in London to Frankfurt, would cost it more than 100 million Swiss francs ($100.52 million).UBS has set up a bank in Frankfurt to consolidate most of its European wealth management operations.
The world’s biggest wealth manager told employees in March that it will take a “decentralised” approach to Brexit, with the majority of a first wave of under 200 staff moving to Frankfurt from London. Others will move to European cities where their clients are based.
The bank will merge its British entity into its German headquartered-bank in the absence of a transition deal, it said in March.
Wells Fargo (WFC.N) has applied for an investment firm license from the French regulator to create a Paris hub for its investment banking and capital markets activity in the European Union after Brexit.
Reporting by Reuters Staff, editing by Jane Merriman and Ed Osmond