CFA: Drop in EU nationals 'a huge loss' for UK investment sector

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The UK investment management sector could lose a significant amount of its EU workforce post-Brexit, according to a poll by the CFA.

The professional standards body found that less than half – 42% – of EU nationals who responded to the survey and currently worked in the UK planned to stay after Brexit, and 16% planned to leave the country. The remainder were undecided, said the CFA Society UK.

In addition, less than half (43%) said they felt their job was secure.

“These results are a clear sign of the uncertainty and disillusionment in the profession surrounding the expected repercussions of the referendum result for the UK market,” the society said in a statement announcing the results.

The vast majority (91%) of UK-based EU nationals also said they felt the UK had become less competitive as a financial centre. 

The CFA Society UK questioned more than 1,100 of its members, including British, EU, and non-EU nationals. 

Non-EU nationals were more positive than EU nationals working in the UK. Of those quizzed by the CFA, the majority of whom are from North America or Asia, 69% said they would stay in the UK after it leaves the union.

Four in five (81%) British respondents said they would stay in the country.

Will Goodhart, chief executive of CFA Society UK, said falling numbers of EU nationals in investment management would be “a huge loss for the UK market”, and it was “crucial” to minimise this loss as much as possible.

“It will be vital to resolve the issues impacting the City post-Brexit quickly and favourably in order to retain those that are undecided about their plans,” Goodhart said. “If the City doesn’t attract and retain the best talent from all regions, its ability to serve clients and the end investor will be weakened.”

Despite the lack of certainty emanating from discussions between the UK and the EU27, some financial services groups have already begun moving jobs out of London and into other UK countries. Leaders of major EU cities have also been trying to attract businesses seeking to relocate.

Related images

  • David Davis and Michel Barnier at a Brexit press conference in October 2017

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