Executives of the biggest U.S. investment banks met British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne seeking to maintain London’s status as a premier financial hub after U.K voters decided to split from the European Union.
The gathering in which Osborne sought to highlight the U.K.’s comparative strengths included Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s Michael Sherwood, Robert Rooney of Morgan Stanley, Alex Wilmot-Sitwell of Bank of America, Bill Winters of Standard Chartered Plc and JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Viswas Raghavan.
The government and industry shared “a common aim to help London retain its position as the leading international finance center,” according to a joint statement. “Britain’s decision to leave the EU clearly presents economic challenges, which we are determined to work together to meet.”
The London meeting underscored the risk of job losses in the industry, which employs more than 2 million in the U.K. JPMorgan may relocate “a few thousand” employees if the country’s divorce settlement with the European Union hurts banks, Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon told Italy’s Il Sole-24 Ore.
Eighty-seven percent of U.S. investment banks’ EU staff are located in the U.K., which is also home to 78 percent of the region’s capital markets activity, according to New Financial, a think tank.