Nearly one in 10 jobs in Leeds is now accounted for by financial services, with the city one of the principal centres outside of the capital, new figures show.
The Leeds City Region is home to 30 national and international banks, and is home to the headquarters of three of the five largest building societies.
However the main city of Leeds is a major centre for mortgage, corporate and retail finance, insurance and stockbroking. The city is also an important centre for equity, venture and risk finance. In Leeds alone there are more than 36,000 people working in financial centres, nearly one in 10 of the entire city’s workforce, figures from The City UK showed.
Last week, one of the institutions which plays a key role in these strong numbers, Leeds Building Society, reported the fourth consecutive year of record results and its chief executive Peter Hill thinks that this side of the Pennines is flexing its financial might.
“I actually think personal financial services can be a superpower for Yorkshire and the North East. You have three of the top five building societies in Yorkshire, you have got the likes of First Direct which is a brand leader in what they do and very distinctive. In the North East you have got Virgin Money, we have got Yorkshire Bank here and you have got the likes of Atom Bank, newly established in the North East.
“What this creates is a Northern Powerhouse for retail financial services. I think what we should be doing in Yorkshire is thinking about how we develop and grow this.”
Miles Celic, Chief Executive of TheCityUK, said: “Strong regional financial centres like Leeds and Sheffield, boost the attractiveness of London as a global financial centre. Maintaining this ecosystem is critical to ensuring the UK remains a world-leading place to do business.”