• Budget 2018: The Chancellor warned at the weekend that an emergency Budget would be needed if Britain leaves the EU in March without a deal. However, Downing Street has said that all spending plans in this Budget will go ahead “irrespective” of Brexit. Treasury officials have said there is a £4.2bn reserve in place for planning for a ‘no-deal’. Mr Hammond said his Budget was based on the assumption of an “average-type free trade deal” being agreed with the EU. The Chancellor reiterated his expectation of a “deal dividend” for the economy if a Brexit agreement is reached with the EU. (BBC)
  • The UK has rolled over only 14 of 236 EU international treaties: The FT reports that Britain is yet to roll over 40 free trade agreements that the EU currently has in place with countries including Mexico, Japan, South Korea and Canada. The 236 treaties cover a variety of issues ranging from financial services to agriculture to airlines take-off and landing rights. Last week the National Audit Office reported that 10 out of 12 projects required to guarantee a fully functioning border in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit were at risk of not being delivered on time. (The FT)
  • Australia’s banks begin relocating functions from London: Commonwealth Bank of Australia has applied for a banking license in the Netherlands and is setting up an office in Amsterdam. It plans to base 50 staff in the city to oversee EU passporting functions. Similarly, Macquarie Group has chosen Dublin and Westpac are reportedly considering Frankfurt. A survey in September by EY found that 77 of 222 leading financial companies said they were considering moving or shifting some operations or staff to elsewhere in Europe. The news follows the comments over the weekend of Elke König, the head of the Eurozone’s Single Resolution Board, who said that banks would have to move people rather than carrying out “letterbox” relocations. (The FT)