Financial export

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A financial export is a business service provided by a domestic firm (regardless of ownership) to a foreign firm or individual within the scope of financial services. While financial services such as current accounts, mortgages and cashpoints are often seen as a domestic service, an increasing proportion of financial services are now being handled abroad, in other financial centres, for a variety of reasons. Financial exports include a wide range of activities from insurance to banking and brokerage. Many smaller financial centres, such as Bermuda, Luxembourg, and the Cayman Islands, lack sufficient size for a domestic financial services sector and have developed a role providing services to non-residents as offshore financial centres. The increasing competitiveness of financial services has meant that many countries, such as the United States and Japan, which were self-sufficient or protectionist have increasingly imported financial services.

The United States, France, and Japan are all importers of financial services, whereas Switzerland and Germany both record modest surpluses. The leading financial exporter, in terms of exports less imports, is the United Kingdom, which had £71 billion of financial exports in 2013, up from £68 billion in 2012. The UK's position is helped by both unique institutions (such as Lloyd's of London for insurance, the Baltic Exchange for shipping etc.) and an environment that attracts foreign firms; many international corporations have global or regional headquarters in the London and are listed on the London Stock Exchange, and many banks and other financial institutions operate there or in Edinburgh.[1]