Belfast Telegraph

JPMorgan and Citigroup brief staff on contingency plans for Brexit

JPMorgan has issued advice to staff about contingency plans for Brexit
JPMorgan has issued advice to staff about contingency plans for Brexit

JPMorgan and Citigroup have sent internal memos to staff following the triggering of Article 50, trying to address concerns surrounding Brexit contingency plans.

Neither US bank disclosed a preferred site for a new EU hub, but they said they have spent months drawing up plans.

"Citi has been preparing for Brexit since before the exit vote in June," the bank's EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) boss Jim Cowles said in an internal memo sent on Thursday morning and seen by the Press Association.

Mr Cowles said Citi has been working on the assumption of a "hard Brexit", in which the UK loses access to the single market for financial service.

"A hard Brexit would require certain changes, including relocating certain client-facing roles to the EU from the UK, and the possible creation of a new broker-dealer entity within the EU," he said, echoing comments made in January.

It is unclear how many of Citigroup's near-9,000 UK staff may have to move once a location is chosen.

The bank has been exploring its options with "with representatives from a number of different countries", as well as clients, he said.

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An similar internal note was sent out to staff on Wednesday from JPMorgan's head of asset and wealth management Mary Erdoes, and Daniel Pinto, head of the corporate and investment bank.

JPMorgan, which has said about 4,000 of its 16,000 UK staff could be moved out of Britain, told staff it had "choices in in terms of locations and legal entity structure" of a new EU hub and was "well-placed" to serve clients given its existing footprint across the continent.

The note, seen by the Press Association, said: "We have spent the last several months reviewing the many variables in this process, client needs, employee considerations, regulatory requirements, operational risks, our inventory of licenses, political issues in the region and dozens of other factors."

"This is a complex process and we will not rush into any decisions."