Home Markets Weaponising financial services poses new threat to City exports

Weaponising financial services poses new threat to City exports

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The unprecedented financial sanctions imposed on Russia after its invasion of Ukraine have not had quite the devastating impact on the Russian economy that some predicted. But they are still expected to lead to a lasting shift in the international financial order.

The freezing of Russia’s foreign exchange reserves and the exclusion of key Russian banks from the SWIFT messaging network has sent a clear message to other countries — if you fear that one day you will be subject to US sanctions, you might consider reducing your dependence on the Western financial system.

Much of the commentary on this prospect has focused on the threat to the global dominance of the US dollar. But it could also have profound implications for international trade in financial services. As the world’s biggest exporter of financial services, the City of London should be particularly concerned.

It is hard to know how significant the shift will prove in practice….

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