Brexit: Leave vote would be a ‘disaster’ - Deutsche Bank chairman

Paul Achleitner has become the latest global banking leader to warn about the potential fallout if UK voters decide to leave the EU

Deutsche Bank chairman Paul Achleitner has become the latest global banking leader to warn about the potential fallout if UK voters decide to leave the European Union. (Photograph: Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters)

Deutsche Bank chairman Paul Achleitner has become the latest global banking leader to warn about the potential fallout if UK voters decide to leave the European Union. (Photograph: Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters)

 

Deutsche Bank chairman Paul Achleitner has become the latest global banking leader to warn about the potential fallout if UK voters decide to leave the European Union.

A yes vote next week on the so-called Brexit would be an “economic disaster for the UK and a political disaster for the EU,” Achleitner said at a dinner Wednesday night in New York hosted by the American Council on Germany. During his speech, he drew a contrast between public opinion polls, which point to a vote to leave the EU, and gambling odds, which reflect a preference to remain politically and economically attached to the continent.

Achleitner also lamented the growing strains of populism in the US and Europe and the regulatory pressures, which he said are preventing many European banks from making loans and stimulating economic activity. But he reserved his strongest words for the Brexit vote.

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“London bookies and the betting industry are still in the ‘remain’ camp,” he said. “I hope they’re right, because if it works the other way, it’s an economic disaster for the UK and a political disaster for the EU.”

Other bank leaders including JPMorgan Chase and Co.’s Jamie Dimon and HSBC Holdings Stuart Gulliver have also issued cautions on a potential U.K. exit following the June 23 referendum. Some executives have predicted market turbulence, long-term uncertainty for the UK and job cuts in London’s financial industry if firms shift certain operations to the Continent.

Deutsche Bank chief executive John Cryan said last month the Frankfurt-based company would probably move some trading activities if a Brexit vote prevails. It would be “counterintuitive” to trade euro zone products such as Italian government bonds out of London if Britain was no longer part of the EU, he said.

Bloomberg