London third best city in which to conduct business

London has moved up two places in the rankings of top cities to conduct business to take the number three spot, cementing its reputation among business leaders and London property investors.

Despite Brexit uncertainty, London now ranks joint third with Hong Kong in the list of the world’s best business cities. The Ipsos Mori’s Top Cities surveys lists New York at first place, followed by Abu Dhabi in second place.

The market research organisation said the results would reassure leaders and investors in London and around the world about the city’s status as a hub for investment and business.

Canary Wharf, London

Asian investors account for half of property deals ...

Wealthy foreign buyers have long been attracted to London homes. They’re a stable and lucrative investment in a safe country largely free from corruption. It’s a trend that continues today, helped along by the low value of the pound.

Asia Pacific property investment in London is at a five-year high, accounting for almost half the property deals in the first six months of the year, according to research by Cushman & Wakefield.

The real estate consultancy showed that Asia Pacific firms spent more than $4.4 billion on London property in the six months to July. That’s almost half of the $8.8 billion total investment.

...while US buyers line up

The fall in the value of the pound after the Brexit vote means London property is increasingly attractive to buyers purchasing in US dollars. Exchanging US dollars to pounds is saving US buyers thousands of pounds, making London property more attractive than ever.

Interest rates have remained low and there’s been a 1.9 percent drop in London’s prime property prices. Combined with the Trump effect, this has led to an increase in demand from US buyers, who have increased in number by 30 percent in the last year.

“Properties around the £1-1.5m mark are a popular investment choice for these overseas investors,” says Mert Altinisik, head of sales at Property UK. “Overseas buyers are paying around 15 percent less for a property in London than a year ago, which means that now is the ideal time to invest.” 

A high number of these investors head to Canary Wharf property or homes in the City of London, relocating for jobs in financial services and law.

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