The Rise of Asian Financial Centres

As the centre of gravity of global financial markets shifts from North America and Europe to Asia, the hubs in the region, including those on the Chinese mainland, are rapidly rising in importance. 

Commercial think tank and consultancy Z/Yen, in collaboration with the China Development Institute (CDI), has published the twentieth Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI 20), the GFCI index rates 87 financial centres.

London, New York, Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo remain the five leading global financial centres. London is one point ahead of New York (on a scale of 1,000 points this is insignificant). Singapore is 42 points behind New York in third place. Tokyo, in fifth place, is 60 points behind New York.

The UK ‘Brexit’ referendum result is not reflected in the GFCI 20 results so far. GFCI 20 was calculated based on data collected up to the end of June 2016

Growing Chinese Influence 

The GFCI shows that London, New York, Singapore and Hong Kong have maintained their strong positions as the four leading global financial centres and that they both compete and collaborate with each other.

Significantly Chinese mainland cities are rapidly rising in importance with five cities included in the GFCI top fifty. Shanghai, Shenzhen and Beijing rank as the top three financial centres on the Chinese mainland.

Australia Pulled Along

The three have their own merits and play a complementary role to each other. Shanghai, the birthplace of China’s modern finance industry, has stepped up its efforts to transform itself into a major international financial centre since 2009.

As Asia deepens and widens its financial strength then Australasian centres also benefit and the GFCI result shows Sydney and Melbourne both enjoying solid increases in their ratings.

«Changes in perceptions following the Brexit referendum are not yet reflected in the GFCI. However, early signs are that London could see a decline next time round. Which centres may gain from this is hard to predict,» commented Mark Yeandle, Associate Director at the Z/Yen Group and the author of the GFCI.


Compare my salary

Compare my salary

Feeling Underpaid? Benchmark your salary by job title, company and location. Find out where you stand in minutes.

compare my salary


Newsletter-SymbolFree Subscription

Subscribe to our free newsletter and receive daily email alerts from the finews editorial team with a list of the top featured articles.

Share with us

Do you have any market intelligence to share with – email us on – All communication is completely confidential and strictly anonymous.