A report by challenger wealth manager Netwealth has found that London remains a "pre-eminent global financial centre", ranking just behind New York, despite continued fears that Brexit would drive clients to other destinations.
Produced by the Netwealth's chief economic strategist Gerard Lyons, the report, Ranking global financial centres: what shareholders and investors value most, has ranked the top ten global financial centres based on a range of factors most valued by investors and shareholders.
The key factors were the economic landscape, regulatory environment and financial stability, innovation, depth of markets, concentration bias, international focus and openness; as well as the green agenda, fintech and technology, competitiveness, governance, and soft power.
The UK ranked second after the US, suggesting it still holds a pole position as one of the key global financial hubs.
Commenting on his findings, Lyons said: "It is without doubt that the UK remains a pre-eminent global financial centre. Based on a range of factors most valued by investors and shareholders, the UK is, and will likely remain, highly attractive for those looking to invest and/or raise capital.
"The opportunity post-Brexit for the UK, and London in particular, is that it further harnesses its strengths, namely openness, financial innovation and depth of markets. Brexit should be seen as an opportunity to double down on what makes the UK a global financial centre powerhouse."
The report looks at some of the broad issues affecting people's perceptions of financial centres, and then looks at the major indices ranking them to determine the overall position of each hub on the global stage.
Although it found that New York and London are far ahead of the competition in terms of their financial standing, Netwealth also said this competition is intensifying, highlighting the strong position of countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Switzerland, Australia and Canada as financial centres.
The report said: "While this is evident in multiple ways, one recent example was the intense race in 2017 and into 2018 to attract the planned international listing of Saudi Aramco.
"While this global competition is likely to intensify in the future, financial centres also face another challenge, often from domestic pressures, to get the balance right between shareholders and stakeholders. This is a vitally important debate."
Meanwhile, the report highlights financial innovation as a key metric which is likely to bring new entrants into the market and improve the consumer experience.
Both New York and London are taking this into account, but focus on different priorities; while New York looks to attract more global firms to list, London is more concerned about ensuring stability, enhancing competitiveness and future innovation.
Lyons said: "The global financial centre environment is increasingly competitive, with a strong showing by centres in Asia and a clear rise in prominence of centres such as Australia and Canada.
"While there are numerous hurdles to navigate, including a very domestic market, China's insatiable ambition is likely to see it rise through the rankings in years to come too.
"The growing competitiveness sends a clear warning to the likes of the US and UK that they cannot rest on their laurels. To continue to thrive, they must continue to provide a sound regulatory environment and ensure they remain an attractive location where clients want to do business."
Top ten financial centres
4. Hong Kong
10. France and Japan