• Balkanisation of Europe's Finance Hubs - Great for Fintech, Challenge for the Banks

    Posted in July 2016 on Jul 05, 2016

    It will take a while for the penny to drop for many, but despite a concerted rearguard action from London to protect its position as Europe's pre-eminent finance centre, its position in Europe has already changed forever. Much of the speculation in the aftermath of the Brexit vote has been around who might replace London, which in my opinion is the wrong question, since a more likely result will be the development of many centres rather than one. This is an opportunity for the fintech sector, but a major logistical challenge for the banks.

    The City of London is gearing up for an almighty effor...

  • The inexorable rise of the UK as the world's offshore centre

    Posted in July 2016 on Jul 03, 2016

    As I have written before, the real risk for offshore centres is that onshore jurisdictions will bring more and more of the products and services offered by offshore jurisdictions onshore.

    George Osborne's move to reduce corporation tax to 15% is I believe just the first in a series of developments in the wake of the Brexit vote that will cast the UK as offering the same tax efficiency as an offshore centre, but within an unparalleled global finance infrastructure.

    For the offshore jurisdictions' perspective this is challenging in two ways; having a more and more competitive UK would be difficu...

  • The real risk for offshore jurisdiction

    Posted in April 2016 on Apr 16, 2016

    It is all too easy in the immediate aftermath of a big story to jump to conclusions and miss the bigger picture. I believe that there is a real risk for offshore jurisdictions doing this with regards to the current global media firestorm around tax havens and hidden assets. The real risk, in my view, is not the short term reputational damage, but rather that much of the business done today offshore will migrate back onshore over time and this onshoring will devastate those economies without plans for how to deal with the “post offshore” world we may find evolving in the next few years.

  • It's time to insist on adequate standards in Alternative Finance

    Posted in April 2016 on Apr 11, 2016

    It is one of the paradoxes of the alternative finance market that, in a yield hungry world an asset class providing a risk adjusted return beyond all but the most outlandish investment strategies has yet to attract significant amounts of mainstream institutional capital.

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