Morning Coffee: Ireland the new threat to London banking jobs, the six-figure salary no one seems to want

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Goldman Sachs has already nailed its colours to the mast when it comes to a potential UK exit from the EU – essentially saying it will be forced to move out of London. So far, this has been treated as posturing, with Paris and Frankfurt only happy to present themselves as viable alternatives to the City.

However, investment banks may be looking to shift jobs closer to London, should the UK government head of an EU exit. Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup have already been planning to shift some of its operations to Ireland in the wake of Britain leaving Europe.  “I’m frankly looking at moving some activities to Ireland,” said one senior UK-based manager at a Wall Street bank. “I think the Irish central bank and government would welcome this. It is not so much Brexit, more about legal entity optimisation.”

It helps, of course, that the banks already have a banking license in Ireland, and employ thousands of staff in back office functions in the country. Being based in the UK allows US and Asian banks to “passport” their services throughout the EU, so leaving would make life a lot harder for financial institutions to justify such a large presence here.

“I don’t think people are making enough of it – a lot of passported activities that cannot take place in London will not exist here any more,” said another banking executive

Separately, if you want to enter a sector where there’s an acute talent shortage and banks are queuing up on campus to lure top graduates into high-paying jobs, try commercial banking in the US. Approving loans may not be considered as glamourous as investment banking, but firms are offering a six-figure salary to experienced loan officers because they can’t find enough talent at the senior end of the market. For the first time in decades, they’re actively trying to bring in more graduates.

“It’s an unbelievable shortage,” said Mike Crawford, executive vice president and chief operating officer at Commerce Bank & Trust in Worcester. “It’s tremendously competitive out there. And it’s frustrating.”


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