Even Hong Kong's Homegrown Bankers are Considering Moving Away

Eric Zhu November 28, 2019 2 mins read

Recently, Bloomberg interviewed Morgan McKinley Financial Service Team's Manager Eric Zhu on the current situation of Banking employment market in Hong Kong.

Source: Bloomberg

A senior banker born in Hong Kong plans to try getting a U.S. green card, just in case the city’s social unrest worsens.

Two other executives in town are working with a recruiter in Shanghai to move there, betting its future may be brighter. And at the local outpost of one of Europe’s top investment banks, a dealmaker says lifelong Hong Kong residents in his group are weighing their options, looking at a variety of countries.

Expats and mainland Chinese working in Hong Kong’s financial hub were the first to talk about moving away when protests began escalating months ago. But the prolonged disruption to work and life since then, and the spotlight being cast on China’s control of the city, have pushed some Hongkongers to start weighing the possibility of moving abroad.

There’s certainly no exodus. But the private talks among colleagues, employers and recruiters show how badly nerves are fraying in a city where clashes play out daily on television and sometimes on streets outside major financial firms. With no end in sight for the fires and tear gas, a growing number of people in office towers are at least pondering how their industry may be affected long term and whether they should look elsewhere.

“They are in the prime of their career and now they are fed up with the social instability in Hong Kong and asking, ‘Where is my next step?’” said Eric Zhu, the Shanghai-based recruiter at Morgan McKinley. “There are much fewer opportunities in Hong Kong, whereas in Shanghai hirings are on the rise.”


Eric Zhu's picture
Operations Director | Financial Services Recruitment