London retains global finance throne amid Brexit chaos


Just days before Brexit is due to happen, the City of London still lays claim to top-dog status in global finance.

So far.

Reuters analysis shows it has shrugged off predictions of a Brexit calamity.

In the year to June, the financial district attracted more cross-border commercial real estate investment than any other city.

It still handles nearly one fifth of the world's international loans - more than any other hub.

And the City's dominance of foreign exchange has increased - up to 43% of trades from 37% in 2016.

Property developer Stuart Lipton is one to pour money into the City.

He's building a big new tower dubbed 22 Bishopsgate.

And he says it's no mystery why the City still prospers:

(SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH PROPERTY DEVELOPER, STUART LIPTON, SAYING:

"It's because of the war for talent. And London has got great universities, great arts, it's an enjoyable place, it's a livable city."

After the 2016 Brexit referendum there were predictions of massive job losses for the City.

That hasn't happened.

On Tuesday (October 15) Bank of England governor Mark Carney said the financial sector was ready for even a worst-case scenario:

(SOUNDBITE)(English) BANK OF ENGLAND GOVERNOR, MARK CARNEY, SAYING:

"The banks have been capitalised and they've been carrying liquidity consistent with the unlike.. - you know - if we would have no deal and a crystallization of trade war and more severe difficulties in China-Hong Kong."

But the same day saw a word a caution from the City's policy chief.

Catherine McGuinness said the number of jobs moved would go up, especially if there's a disorderly Brexit.

She called this a moment of 'high risk'.

As Britain's political turmoil nears fever pitch, the City of London has a lot at stake.