British May Make London Even More Hedge-Fund Friendly

May 9 2007 | 11:38am ET

Hedge funds sure do have a friend in British Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown.

Just days after derailing Germany’s ambitious plans for hedge fund oversight at a meeting of European Union finance ministers, Brown—just weeks away from a likely promotion to his country’s top job when Prime Minister Tony Blair steps down—met with representatives of London’s financial services industry to discuss how to make London even more globally competitive.

“Britain is a world-leader in financial services, but it must never be complacent about the challenges ahead,” he said after the meeting.

One of the proposals would help hedge funds slash costs by up to $575 million, a move that would solidify London’s position in the alternatives industry. The city is already home to about 90% of Europe’s hedge funds, and is gaining on the world leader, New York. The Chancellor also discussed creating an International Centre for Financial Regulation, a research institution whose mission would be to offer training on international regulation.

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