'Many' benefits of Brexit including removing cap on bankers' bonuses, says Tory peer

8 September 2022, 09:43

Tory Peer Lord Spencer highlights Brexit benefits

By Daisy Stephens

There are "many" benefits of Brexit in the UK, a Tory Peer has told LBC - including removing the cap on bankers' bonuses.

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Lord Michael Spencer, businessman and former treasurer of the Tory party, was asked by LBC's Nick Ferrari whether there were benefits to be had from the UK's departure from the EU.

Lord Spencer said: "Yes, many."

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When Nick asked him to list some, the Tory peer said: "European regulation... had been lumbered on financial services, which should be peeled off.

"And one of them which, of course, won't poll well, is take away the cap on bankers' bonuses.

"I mean, that was all a European project."

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When Nick pointed out that was unlikely to be a popular answer, Lord Spencer said: "Financial services is one of our most successful, and indeed I think our single most successful export business.

"And if we want to retain the City of London as a leading financial services centre, we should get rid of all that baggage on our backs.

"We've moved away from the financial crisis, it was more than 10 years ago."

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Bonuses in the financial sector were forecast to rocket by 20 per cent in 2021-22, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) said in March.

And in January some bankers had their biggest bonuses since the 2008 financial crash.

Top investment bankers at HSBC saw an average bonus of £596,000 in 2021 - on top of an average yearly salary of £479,000, according to This Is Money.

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It comes as the UK experiences a worsening cost of living crisis, with average wages struggling to keep pace with soaring inflation.

Growing numbers of households are expected to be forced into fuel poverty this winter, with families having to make cuts on spending - including for food - in order to afford their bills.

The rail, postal and shipping industries are among those that have seen strikes as people demand wages that match rocketing inflation.

Liz Truss is expected to announce a freeze on energy bills on Thursday, lasting until the next general election in two years' time, in an attempt to alleviate financial pressure on hard-pressed Brits.