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Banks Won’t Wait to See What Brexit Deal the U.K. Can Get

  • Executives said to assume U.K. will lose passporting rights
  • Firms need the two-year period to set up elsewhere in Europe
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Big Banks Forego Patience as U.K. Ponders Brexit Deal

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Big investment banks with their European headquarters in London will start the process of moving jobs from the U.K. within weeks of the government triggering Brexit, a faster time line than their public messages of patience would imply, according to people briefed on the plans being drawn up by four of the biggest firms.

Dismayed by the lack of a clear plan to protect the U.K.’s status as a global financial hub, executives are planning for the worst -- that they will lose the right to sell services freely around the European Union from the City, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private. Facing a long process with potential waits for regulatory approvals before workers can pack their bags, banks want to start quickly in order to have new or expanded offices set up in Europe before the end of the two-year Brexit negotiation period.