People and Business: Fishy stories in the markets

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The Independent Online
STRANGE EVENTS seem to be stirring in London Docklands this week. First there was a report that the London Stock Exchange was moving from its historic base in Threadneedle Street to New Billingsgate Market, the fish market adjacent to Canary Wharf.

Then there was the story that Bank of America has junked plans to move its European Headquarters to Canary Wharf "because of fears over Britain being outside the euro".

Both stories have been firmly denied by the parties involved - and both have got everyone hopping mad.

A spokesman for the Stock Exchange derided the very idea that the exchange planned to build a new dealing floor in the former fish market - "we've only just gone electronic".

A Bank of America spokesman dismissed the idea that it had been scared off moving to Canary Wharf by Tony Blair's dithering over European Monetary Union as "fantasy".

Maybe. But both stories indicate the nervousness in the Square Mile over London's future, particularly over the first month's figures for how much trading in the euro has been won by London - due out any day now.

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