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US Banks Donate To ‘The Fight To Keep Britain In EU’ Campaign

Britain Stronger in EuropeThe Britain Stronger in Europe campaign has received support from three more U.S banks in addition to Goldman Sachs, which joined the campaign earlier to fight to keep Britain in the European Union (E.U).

The three U.S. banks that have come out in support include JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America who will support the campaign by donating six-figure sums but will be lesser than the £500,000 given by Goldman Sachs. Another major US bank Citi has also been approached but is said to be unlikely to join the campaign.

The Britain Stronger in Europe campaign has refused to comment on the issue saying that it has “a broad range of funders” and stated that the campaign has received support from small donors, philanthropists and businesses troubled by the prospect of job losses and price rises in case of an exit. The campaign would be publishing the complete list of its donors when it is legally required, which is expected to be in March or April.

Britain is expected to hold a national referendum by the end of 2017 on whether it should remain in the European Union (EU) or move out of it.

These large contributions by US banks have been dubbed “unusual” by a senior executive at one of the banks saying that in some groups the decision might have been made at the board level, indicating the importance given to the issue. The support from US banks for the campaign to remain in the EU stems from their concerns about the impact of Britain exiting the EU based on their extensive operations in UK which depends heavily on access to the EU market.

According to a senior US investment banker, Britain’s exit will have far-reaching consequences. He said that it would imply that

every single contract will have to be renegotiated — that means every credit default swap, every derivative, every loan agreement.

US banks have publicly expressed their concern at the prospect of Britain’s exit. Morgan Stanley president, Colm Kelleher has voiced his fears on a personal level by stating that in case Great Britain leaves the EU, a significant backlash against London as a global financial centre could be on the cards.

These major US banks employ around 30,000 employees in London alone and many more in other locations in the country and an exit from the E.U would require these banks to re-think their operations in the U.K and result in possible job losses.