Euronext boss says London financial centre struggling under Brexit      

Stock market listings outside of London are the 'new normal', Stephane Boujnah said, citing Ryanair favouring Dublin trading over London
Euronext boss says London financial centre struggling under Brexit      

While more money changes hands daily in London than in Paris, the turnover across all of Euronext’s exchanges is double that of London, chief executive says.

The boss of Europe’s largest exchange group took a swipe at London, saying Brexit means it is no longer Europe’s dominant financial centre.

“London used to be the largest financial centre of the European Union, and everybody liked it,” Euronext chief executive Stephane Boujnah said. “Today, London is the largest financial centre of the United Kingdom.” 

Mr Boujnah was speaking after the combined market capitalisation of primary listings in France briefly overtook that of Britain last month. 

While more money changes hands daily in London than in Paris, the turnover across all of Euronext’s exchanges is double that of London, Mr Boujnah said. 

Stock market listings outside of London are the “new normal”, he said, citing Ryanair favouring Dublin trading over London, as well as Universal Music and Allfunds choosing an initial shares sales in Amsterdam over the UK capital.

As well as Dublin, Euronext operates exchanges across Europe, including in Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, Milan, Lisbon, and Oslo.     

Meanwhile, the European Union published three draft laws to deepen capital markets through less reliance on post-Brexit London. 

Britain's departure from the EU has forced the EU to review its reliance on London for clearing trillions of euros in derivatives, EU financial services commissioner Mairead McGuinness said.

The first draft law seeks to build the EU's own capacity to clear derivatives. All EU access for UK clearers is due to end in June 2025 but the draft law now casts doubt on this, industry officials say.

"We fully respect the right and capacity of the United Kingdom to do what it wants to do around its financial industry, in its interests, so I think there is a healthy respect and understanding of why we are doing it," Ms McGuinness said. "We don't underestimate how big a change this," she said.

The London Stock Exchange Group, whose LCH arm clears the bulk of euro interest rate swaps being targeted by the EU law, said it welcomed the acknowledgement of the importance of continued access for EU firms to UK clearing houses to hedge their risks in all currencies.

The second draft law on insolvency aims to increase clarity and predictability for investors in one EU state who want to invest in a company in another member country on how would they get money back if the firm went bust.

The third draft law seeks to simplify how companies list to save about €100m annually in compliance fees. 

• Bloomberg and Reuters

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