Senior asset management and banking names sign Scottish ‘No’ vote letter

Senior figures from across the UK’s asset management and banking industries have warned against the uncertainties of Scottish independence and argued that the country is stronger as part of the UK in a letter to The Scotsman.

The letter argues that the business case for breaking away from the UK is not strong enough and warns that “much is at stake” from voting yes to Scottish independence.

It says: “As job creators, we have looked carefully at the arguments made by both sides of the debate.

“Our conclusion is that the business case for independence has not been made.”

Particular uncertainties are highlighted by the business leaders including currency, regulation, tax, pensions, EU membership and exports, stressing that “uncertainty is bad for business.”

By contrast the letter argues that remaining in the UK puts forward a more positive case for business in Scotland. It adds: “Today Scotland’s economy is growing. We are attracting record investment and the employment rate is high.

“The United Kingdom gives business the strong platform we must have to invest in jobs and industry. By all continuing to work together, we can keep Scotland flourishing.”

The letter is supported by a list of signatories from Scotland’s key industries including engineering and whisky. A significant contribution to the list of signatures has also been made by both former and existing influential names from major life companies, asset managers, investment trusts, and banks.

HSBC group chairman Douglas Flint is a named signatory along with The Co-operative Bank chief executive officer Niall Booker.

Signatures from investment management firms include Artemis Invest Management chairman Hamish Grossart, Cornelian Asset Management chief executive Jeremy Richardson and Aberforth Partners founding partner David Ross.

Other financial services names that also contributed to the letter include former Standard Life chairman Sir Brian Stewart, former Scottish Widows chief executive Mike Ross and former Scottish Amicable IM chief executive Douglas Ferran.

Current manager Mark Tennant from investment company F&C Private Equity trust, which is registered in Scotland, is featured as a signatory to the letter.