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Asian Financial Centers Continue To Dominate Top-Ten Rankings

by Mary Swire, Lowtax.net, Hong Kong
27 September, 2019

The Global Financial Centres Index was released on September 19, 2019, charting the top onshore and offshore financial centers worldwide, and for the first time the most innovative financial technology hubs.

The report is based on assessments from financial professionals and quantitative data. In the latest biannual report, New York extended its lead over London to 17 points, taking first place. It was said that trade wars, geopolitical unrest, and Brexit are introducing significant adjustments to medium-term perceptions.

Performance across the index showed slightly reduced confidence, with the overall ratings falling around 2.5 percent from GFCI 25, released in March 2019.

Seven of the top ten places in the index are now taken by Asia/Pacific centers, continuing the region's strong performance over recent years. Singapore placed fourth, behind Hong Kong in third. Shanghai is considered the fifth leading financial center, followed by Tokyo in 6th, Beijing in 7th, and Shenzhen in 9th.

Dubai rose up to the ranks to take 8th place, while Sydney was ranked 10th.

There were significant improvements noted for Mauritius (40th), Bahrain (47th), and Nairobi (88th).

The British Crown Dependencies' performance dipped, with the Isle of Man (89th) down five places in the rankings, Jersey (59th) falling 12, and Guernsey (92nd) continuing its rapid decline in the index, dropping 17 places following its 15-place fall in GFCI 25.

Professor Michael Mainelli, Executive Chairman of Z/Yen, said: "Competition at the top of the GFCI is intensifying. London is in a 'slipping second' position globally and a 'slipping first' in Europe amidst high volatility emanating from policy uncertainties, Brexit, trade wars, and geopolitical unrest. Asian centers and a resurging Paris are fighting for that second place spot."

The new FinTech index, published for the first time alongside the GFCI, is dominated by Chinese centers, with these taking five of the top seven places in the Index, led by Beijing and Shanghai. New York, London, Singapore, San Francisco, and Chicago also feature in the top ten for FinTech.

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