Brexit impact: Goldman shifting up to $60 bn of assets from UK to Germany

Topics Goldman Sachs | Brexit | Germany

Photo: Reuters
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is shifting as much as $60 billion of assets from the UK to Frankfurt, the latest sign that banks are beefing up their European Union operations ahead of Brexit.

The Wall Street bank plans to move between $40 billion to $60 billion to its German subsidiary by the end of the year, according to people familiar with the matter who asked not to be named discussing private information.

Goldman Sachs Bank Europe SE, the Frankfurt-based subsidiary that will house the assets, had just 3.4 billion euros ($4 billion) at the end of last year, according to its annual report. Goldman could shift more assets over time if its continental business grows, one of the people said.

A spokesman for Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

With fewer than 40 working days until the UK’s transition period expires, international banks are accelerating plans to beef up in Europe to handle the increase in client activity from Jan 1. Even if UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson secures a trade deal, finance houses with London hubs will lose their passporting rights.

With JPMorgan Chase & Co. moving $230 billion to Frankfurt, Goldman’s plans mean the two U.S. banks account for almost three quarters of the roughly 400 billion euros that foreign banks will move to Germany by the end of the year, according to the Bundesbank. The moves will almost triple the combined existing balance sheets of non-German lenders in the country, the central bank has estimated.

Other banks to beef up in Germany’s financial hub include Citigroup Inc., UBS Group AG and Standard Chartered Plc.

In September, Goldman accelerated plans to move more than 100 London employees to European cities while JPMorgan asked about 200 workers to move. A report by consultancy EY last month showed that financial services firms operating in the UK had already shifted about 7,500 employees to the EU since the UK voted to leave the bloc.


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