Dublin slips to 70th in financial centre rankings

New York, London, Hong Kong and Singapore remain top four centres

In 2009 Dublin ranked 10th as a global financial services centre alongside cities such as London, New York and Zurich. Photograph: Eric Luke / THE IRISH TIMES

In 2009 Dublin ranked 10th as a global financial services centre alongside cities such as London, New York and Zurich. Photograph: Eric Luke / THE IRISH TIMES

 

Dublin’s standing as a global financial services centre slipped again in the latest Global Financial Centres Index

as the city fell back four places to 70th in the survey of 83 financial centres.

This puts Dublin behind smaller centres like Guernsey (67), Cayman Islands (54) and Gibraltar (53), and far behind Luxembourg (15th), which alongside Dublin is Europe’s top hub for investment funds.

It’s a far cry from 2009 when Dublin ranked 10th place alongside cities such as London, New York and Zurich.

Now it is languishing at the bottom of the survey with centres which have suffered severely in the crisis including Cyprus (79), Athens (82) and Reykjavik (83).

The survey, which is published by Z/Yen Group, draws on two separate sources of data – instrumental factors and 3,633 responses to an online survey by financial services professionals.

The GFCI survey was first introduced in March 2007, and has subsequently been updated every six months.

Not as bleak

However, while the IFSC and Ireland’s international financial services centre has undoubtedly suffered in the crisis, it is not as bleak as the survey might lend one to believe.

The banking sector has had a turbulent time, with a number of banks, including Helaba and Commerzbank, giving up their Irish banking licenses.

However, the international investment funds sector continues to go from strength to strength, and Irish domiciled funds are up 12.8 per cent in the year to July to €1.2 trillion.

Earlier this year a report from the European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA) found Ireland to be Europe’s leading jurisdiction in fund-processing standardisation. A survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit had found that Ireland is the European domicile of choice for investment funds.

Globally, New York, London, Hong Kong and Singapore remain the top four financial centres, with New York just one point ahead of London.

Regulatory creep

Uncertainty over the UK’s position in Europe, regulatory creep and the UK appearing to be less welcoming to foreigners were all cited as being contributing factors to London lagging its US counterpart.

 

Leading centres in eastern Europe and central Asia saw ratings improve. Istanbul, Almaty and Prague all saw their ratings (and ranks) improve, although Moscow continues to languish with another large drop in the ratings and a decline to 80th in the GFCI.

Middle Eastern centres also continue to rise in the index, with Dubai up 12 to 17th, but offshore centres continued to struggle with reputation and regulation.