Frankfurt is the destination of choice for 30 out of 37 financial institutions which have applied to the European Central Bank for new licences, or to extend existing ones, according to Frankfurt Main Finance. And this could just be the start of the business migration, as the Frankfurt lobby group expects more assets to be transferred from London. The group are predicting some banks will first move only what is necessary, meaning more businesses could be poised to move from the British capital. Hubertus Vath, managing director of Frankfurt Main Finance, said: “All in all, we expect a transfer of €750 billion to €800 billion in assets from London to Frankfurt, the majority of which will be transferred in the first quarter of 2019.
“As it currently stands, banks face the decision of either relocating only what is absolutely necessary or preparing for the relocation of their entire business.
“As long as uncertainty persists, most institutions are likely to prefer the minimum solution. In any case, it is clear that considerable second-round effects will follow.”
Mr Vath still expects up to 10,000 jobs will move to Frankfurt but anticipates that will take eight years, as opposed to five, for jobs to relocate.
He said: ”We stand by the potential of up to 10,000 jobs moving to Frankfurt which we estimated on day one after the Brexit referendum.
“However, there are signs of a second transition phase, which is expected to last until the end of 2022, and thus a further delay.”
A number of Asian banks, including Nomura, Daiwa, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) and Mizuho Securities have revealed their intention to shift operations to Frankfurt.
Goldman Sachs, which employs 6,500 UK staff, is set to at least double its Frankfurt workforce to 400.
Several other London-based banks have also indicated they will move their financial hubs to Paris and Dublin.
HSBC has said it is on course to move up to 1,000 jobs to France, while JP Morgan previously said at least 4,000 of its 16,000 UK jobs could be moved to the EU.
Citi has confirmed around 150-200 staff will be affected out of 6,000 in London and 14,000 in continental Europe, and Barclays also expects a “small number” of roles – around 150 – to move from London to Europe, with most heading to Dublin.
Frankfurt Main Finance said financial institutions were prompted to relocate business to the German city due to the “willingness signalled by German politicians” to loosen labour laws.
Mr Vath said: “Politicians have listened, promised and delivered.
“This is a clear sign that the banks’ relocation to Germany is desired. It is a sign that is seen and appreciated.”
Paris is said to have been the “most aggressive” of all the EU countries in trying to persuade banks into shifting operations after Britain leaves the bloc.
It has already won a bid to become the new home of the European Banking Authority, which will move from London after Brexit.