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The Brief: Banks, not streets, call the shots - Euractiv
It has always been like that. There is the power of the street, and there is the power of the banks. In Catalonia, it looks like the silent message from the banks speaks more loudly that the boisterous streets.

Caixabank's decision to move its legal headquarters out of Catalonia to calm investors is only the top of the iceberg. More than 1,300 companies have transferred their legal headquarters out of Catalonia due to the current uncertainty, according to the national companies' registry. The message is clear. Those who want independence, but also those who don't, need to prepare for utmost economic hardship. Separatists, of course, assume independence will have a price, but how big the price? That is the question.

UK is not Catalonia and Catalonia's independence drive is not Brexit. But a similar migration of banks is taking place there, if not much bigger. Around 40 banks and financial institutions are planning to relocate from the UK to Frankfurt because of Brexit. Britain's departure from the EU "won't be a piece of cake", top German bankers warn, with consequences which need to be taken into account and prepared for. Moreover, the banks currently stationed in the UK have been warned that they cannot "fly and drive" (park and ride?) by establishing letterbox companies in the EU and keeping their infrastructure on the British isles.

by Bernard on Thu Oct 26th, 2017 at 06:46:24 PM EST

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