Shareholders would back banking giant HSBC if it decided to move its headquarters out of the City, according to one of its bigger investors.
David Cumming, head of equities at Standard Life Investments, said that HSBC was being put at a “competitive disadvantage” by “ever-increasing capital requirements”.
“Logically, we would be supportive of a move if they chose to do that,” he told Radio 4’s Today programme.
Standard Life owns 1% of HSBC.
Mr Cumming said a UK exit would result in “better growth, earnings and dividend prospects unless the regulator changes tack”.
The warning came as the Bank of England prepared its latest set of stress tests, designed to assess whether lenders could withstand another financial crisis.
HSBC said earlier this year that it was considering moving its headquarters out of the UK.
At the time, the bank said the decision was sparked by “regulatory and structural reforms” since the financial crisis.
HSBC has said it will make a decision on a possible move away from London by the end of the year.
The bank has not yet said where it may consider moving to, although many expect Hong Kong to be high on the list.
It has had its headquarters in the UK since 1992, but makes most of its money overseas, with Asia accounting for about 80% of its profit.
HSBC has threatened to exit the UK before. In 2010, it said it might move from London if the UK government decided to break up big banks.
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