A month after Britain approved the Brexit vote, all indicators pointed to the fact that the UK economy remained unaffected. During the pre-referendum campaigns the Pro-European Union (EU) wing cited that Britain’s economic fortunes both in the short-term and long-term would be dim if the country exited the EU. Nonetheless, according to the Bank of England, there is still no distinct evidence of a sharp post-Brexit slump. While debatable, it is clear that some sectors and roles have benefitted from the exit.
Although the air of uncertainty among companies before the plebiscite existed and resulted in most firms driving towards growth and expansion initiatives with undeterred consumer spending, steady rise in wage levels, and low trend unemployment rates between March and May was evident. According to then Chancellor Philip Hammond’s Report, IMF and financial pundits still hold that Britain is under a new economic order, which remains untested, and might face imminent economic slowdown and a surge in unemployment levels. Credit Suisse in their post-Brexit forecast estimated that British economy will fall to -1%, while the unemployment rate would rise to 6.5%.
Before the UK went to the polls to decide on leaving the EU, most finance specialists were sceptical of the leave vote, and the repercussions it portends on their careers. They felt that the city of London would no longer be the preferred financial hub, a crown it has held over the years, as most financial conglomerates relocated to other EU cities such as Paris and Frankfurt. They also felt that it would be more depressing for monolingual Britons who would not chase those jobs to in other EU nations.
Additionally, a section of the anti-Brexit voters feared that due to probable economic recession in the UK, most jobs would be wiped out.
Weathering the storm
As much as the accounting career is clichéd as an economic-proof profession due to the ability to withstand economic troughs and peaks, it was predicted that the finance related job openings would diminish in Post Brexit era. Conversely, this has not been the case as Morgan McKinley observed that 17% more jobs had been advertised by city financial firms in June than in the month run-up to the plebiscite.
Unlike what most analysts predicted; Brexit has led to increased demand for financial consultancy services to help British businesses make sense of the new economic dispensation. The Big Four had not been left out in filling the needs presented by the situation. PWC, Ernst and Young, and KPMG created teams that offered client’s advice for the UK clientele as the country prepared to exit the EU membership. The teams were tasked with providing guidance and risk advisory to their clients to transition fully and adapt to the new regulatory framework and regimes.
As the UK wades into a new economic, social, and political era, it is imperative for British firms who face new opportunities and risks to align their strategies and operations with the Post Brexit World. Accountants at this moment play a vital role in making sense of the implications that most companies face because they are no longer a part of the EU concentrating majorly on advisory and consulting areas of taxation, business strategy, supply chain, treasury management, talent management, and growth.
Why choose accountancy?
Trading and Mergers and Acquisition According to an article titled, “the ten best London finance jobs post-Brexit”, accountants are considered the most highly sought profession in the post-Brexit era with such skills being highly transferable to other careers. Mergers, acquisition, and trading are some of the professional skills that one can easily borrow from accountancy.
With Britain’s exit as an EU member a lot has changed since rule 50 was triggered. While some UK-based companies that have been enjoying free trade, agreements require guidance by M&A experts to assist in opening subsidiaries in other EU member states. Other firms will be seeking strategic advice on how to mitigate risks and tap into new opportunities presented by new treaties and regulatory frameworks.
Most traders expected uncertainty in the future of the EU in the first few months post-Brexit as more lobbyists in member states encouraged anti-EU and anti-establishment parties. Consequently, the Brexit analysts expect widespread market uncertainty and volatility periods. The market is projected to re-assess and re-value UK current accounts and deficits, which will lead to plummeting of the pound. This instability, market sentiments, and uncertainty will result in demand for traders who will take favorable positions to gain from the events.
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