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September 20, 2019

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Shanghai among best financial centers

SHANGHAI was ranked as one of the top five global financial centers in the world for the third time in a row, a newly released report said.

The city remained ahead of Tokyo in fifth place in the index, with the rating only one point lower than Singapore which came in fourth, according to the latest edition of the Global Financial Centers Index (GFCI 26), which was co-published by the China Development Institute in Shenzhen and Z/Yen Partners, a London-based market research company.

Not for the first time, New York took first place in the index, 17 points ahead of London. Hong Kong was only two points behind London in third and Singapore remained in fourth place.

Performance across the index showed slightly reduced confidence, with the overall ratings falling around 2.5 percent from GFCI 25. Thirty-one of the 104 centers fell in the ratings, including the top five centers, while 12 others rose 10 or more places in the rankings and 10 fell 10 or more places.

Seven of the top 10 places in the index are now taken up by Asia Pacific centers, continuing the region’s strong performance over recent years.

Overall, trade wars, geopolitical unrest, and Brexit are introducing significant adjustments to medium-term perceptions, the report said.

Among the top five centers, gaps are now being narrowed between the catchers and the leaders. For example, Shanghai was 193 points behind the leader when the index was produced for the first time in 2007, but now it is just 29 points behind New York and only one point below Singapore.

Shanghai’s strong position reflects the stability of the city’s financial policies and its continued growth. Committed to becoming an international finance center by 2020, the city has stayed at the forefront of the reform and opening up of China’s financial services. A total of six Chinese cities were on the list this time — Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Qingdao, and Chengdu.

GFCI 26 was compiled using 134 instrumental factors in five broad areas of competitiveness: business environment, human capital, infrastructure, financial sector development and reputation.


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