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The impact of ‘Brexit’ on UK banks: An analysis of challenges and opportunities for UK

You are required to prepare a research proposal (or business case) for your Dissertation (or Applied Business Project) which must contain the following 3 sections:    


Identify the research question (or business problem) which underpins your proposed research and justify why this research question (or business problem) and the context of your research is important. 


Critically review relevant literature which underpins your chosen research topic and question .


Outline your philosophical position, methodology and/or method(s) and justify why they are appropriate to support your research. 



1.  Introduction

The word “Brexit” describes the UK’s exit from the EU. It has gained popularity since the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union in a referendum on 23 June 2016. In several sectors of the UK economy, exit from the EU has accelerated transformation and significantly impacted the financial sector. The United Kingdom’s banking sector, built on its EU dependence, has faced several challenges and opportunities in the wake of Britain’s departure. In the wake of the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, there were substantial changes in legislation, market access, trade agreements, and prevailing economic circumstances. These changes have far-reaching implications for UK banks’ operations, competitiveness, and performance (Cazan, 2017). This research aims to examine the impact of EU withdrawal on UK banks in a detailed manner, focusing mainly on possibilities and challenges arising from regulatory frameworks. A complex and diverse relationship exists between Britain leaving the European Union and the financial sector. Given the integration of the UK financial system with other European countries, EU directives and standards have had an important impact on regulatory frameworks which control the United Kingdom’s banking sector. Concerning the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union, it has taken a new path, establishing its regulatory framework and identity outside the European Union. Several new regulatory challenges and possibilities are emerging, requiring considerable research to understand how these changes will impact UK banks.

The adjustment to the new environment of regulation is a significant challenge for UK banks. The adoption of EU financial legislation no longer required the development of a separate regulatory framework following the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union. This technique entails implementing new local legislation, ensuring compliance with international standards, and maintaining regulatory equivalence with the EU to preserve access to European markets (Howarth and Quaglia, 2021). The UK banks may need help to adapt to the change in legislation, which would require a substantial investment in understanding and comply with new legislative frameworks. On the other hand, Brexit brings distinct opportunities for UK banks in regulatory frameworks. The United Kingdom’s banks can implement reforms that increase competitiveness, encourage innovation and stimulate economic development through increased control over national legislation. The capacity to modify rules to unique national requirements and goals can help the banking sector become more agile and responsive.

Furthermore, Brexit may offer new routes for regulatory cooperation and engagement with foreign partners outside the EU, resulting in new market access and development prospects. Brexit has generated significant policy uncertainty for the UK financial industry because of the changes in the UK’s relationship with the EU. Trade prices in this industry are also likely to rise. Brexit is having an impact on a wide range of businesses. The same may be said about the financial industry. As a result of its significant integration with the EU and the European Union, the UK’s banking industry has experienced several issues in recent years.

2. Outline of the study

2.1 Aim and Objectives

This research aims to analyze the impact of Brexit on UK banks, explicitly focusing on the opportunities and challenges within the regulatory frameworks.


1. To look at the effects of Brexit on UK financial regulatory systems.

2. Identifying exceptional opportunities in the new regulatory framework for UK banks.

3. To study UK banks’ difficulties shifting to post-Brexit regulatory regimes.

4. To assess UK banks’ procedures and methods to deal with regulatory changes.

5. Discover how regulatory changes influence UK banks’ competitiveness and performance.

The research will include a comprehensive academic literature review and data analysis. The study will employ qualitative and quantitative data to assess the impact of Brexit fully. The study contributes to the existing body of information by giving insight into the future of UK banking following Brexit. Overall, this thesis aims to provide a comprehensive analysis of the effects of Brexit on the UK banking industry and suggestions to UK banks on dealing with the opportunities and challenges that Brexit brings. The study’s findings will assist policymakers, industry professionals, and academics in better understanding the impact of Brexit on UK banks.

2.2 Research Question

The research question in this paper will be what is the impact of Brexit for UK banks in terms of opportunities and challenges within the financial regulatory frameworks?

Justification of Research Question

Studying the impact of Brexit on UK banks and assessing opportunities and challenges within regulatory frameworks is essential for regulators, policymakers, and other stakeholders. Understanding the effects of Brexit on the banking industry is critical for policymakers to make informed decisions, devise effective regulatory measures, and assure post-Brexit stability, growth, and competitiveness. This study provides valuable information for industry players, particularly UK banks, in navigating the changing regulatory environment, allocating resources efficiently, and capitalizing on chances for innovation and development. Furthermore, the findings add to the body of information on the impact of Brexit on the financial industry, focusing on the specific implications for UK banks under regulatory frameworks. This research provides policymakers and stakeholders with practical insights and suggestions to assist UK banks’ resilience, compliance, and long-term performance, eventually defining the banking sector’s trajectory in a post-Brexit scenario. The relevance and timeliness of Brexit as a big event with far-reaching ramifications for the financial industry justifies this study. This research topic and its rationale emphasize the need to know the possibilities and difficulties within regulatory frameworks to handle the effects of Brexit on UK banks successfully.

2.3 UK Bank’s Reaction to the Brexit

The UK’s banks confront a variety of challenges. Some are immediate, while others take time to develop. The outcome of these issues is contingent upon numerous factors. Loss of pass-porting privileges for their operations in the rest of the EU is the greatest obstacle for many established British businesses. Losing pass-porting privileges could disrupt the business and necessitate reorganization. The theft of a passport would be of less concern to modest businesses based within the United Kingdom. The preponderance of their clients reside outside of the United States. Financial and finance companies will be required to restructure their businesses, among other difficulties. A British institution may also contemplate the locations of its European operations outside the country. They could be in companies incorporated in the United Kingdom, Member States, or non-EU states. This bank could decide to reduce or divide the activities of these business entities.

3.  Literature review

The impact of Brexit on UK banks and examining opportunities and difficulties within regulatory frameworks has received considerable scholarly interest. Several studies have examined the regulatory changes brought about by Brexit and their impact on UK banks. According to Miethe and Pothier (2016), the UK’s exit from the EU needs a rethinking of regulatory structures, putting new compliance criteria on banks. Obstfeld (2016), on the other hand, stresses the complications associated with adopting regulatory changes, posing issues in retaining compliance with EU requirements. While these studies give insight into regulatory problems, further study is required to dive deeper into particular regulatory developments and their consequences for UK banks.

Similarly, the impact of Brexit on UK banks’ market access and capacity to perform cross-border transactions has been a research focus. According to Ramiah et al., (2017) Brexit has raised concerns over pass-porting rights, which might limit UK banks’ access to the EU market. Furthermore, Somai and Biedermann (2016) underline the need for advantageous trade agreements to maintain access to the EU market. More study is needed, however, to investigate the long-term consequences of changes in market access on the competitiveness and expansion of UK banks. Another aspect that has received scholarly attention is UK banks’ challenges in dealing with regulatory responsibilities following Brexit. According to O Morgan, (2020) the rising legal expenses generated by regulatory disparities are a major source of worry for banks. Chang (2018) also emphasizes the significance of appropriate risk management methods in the face of legislative changes and uncertainty. More study, however, is required to assess the effectiveness of risk management measures used by UK banks and their influence on total risk exposure. Scholars have also explored the methods and techniques used by UK banks in reaction to Brexit-related regulatory changes. Berger and Badenhoop (2018) explore the significance of operational and technological changes in maintaining compliance and competitiveness. James and Quaglia (2022) emphasize the importance of strategic alliances and acquisitions for UK banks to access new markets. While these studies provide useful information, more study is needed to determine these tactics’ long-term usefulness and sustainability. Furthermore, academics have provided policy implications and recommendations to help policymakers and industry stakeholders.

Espar and Castell (2020) advocate creating a regulatory framework that compromises competitiveness and stability. To address regulatory problems, James and Quaglia (2019) advocate more regulatory collaboration between the UK and the EU. Furthermore, Sowels (2019) emphasizes the significance of continual communication between regulators and market actors. More study is needed, however, to investigate the implementation and effectiveness of these policy proposals in boosting the resilience and growth of UK banks. Finally, the critical evaluation of the literature underlines the problems and potential within UK banks’ regulatory frameworks following Brexit. The current body of knowledge contains information about legislative changes, market access, compliance, and risk management. However, further study is needed to fill gaps in understanding specific regulatory changes, long-term market access effects, and the success of UK banks’ efforts. The findings of this literature review highlight the need for continued research and collaboration among academics, policymakers, and industry stakeholders in navigating the changing regulatory landscape and ensuring the stability and growth of UK banks in the post-Brexit future.

3.1 Research Gap

The need for complete knowledge of the long-term repercussions of regulatory changes on UK banks following Brexit is one study gap in the literature. Although studies have examined the immediate challenges and opportunities within regulatory frameworks, there is a greater need for in-depth research that evaluates specific regulatory changes and their long-term implications for UK banks. The success and sustainability of UK banks’ strategies, the impact of regulatory changes on market access and cross-border operations, compliance issues, and the implementation and efficacy of policy efforts are all part of this research requirement. By addressing this research vacuum, policymakers, industry stakeholders, and banks will gain crucial insights into the developing regulatory environment and its influence on UK bank operations, competitiveness, and growth. Recognizing the long-term consequences of regulatory changes would allow for better-informed decision-making, effective risk management and the formulation of policies to support the stability and growth of UK banks in the post-Brexit future. This study will add to the body of knowledge by giving a more in-depth understanding of specific regulatory changes and their consequences for UK banks. It will also help identify possible impediments and opportunities from regulatory framework development. The study’s conclusions will interest lawmakers developing regulatory policies and industry players navigating a changing regulatory landscape. Finally, this research aims to give practical insights to help UK banks adjust to the regulatory changes brought about by Brexit while maintaining their long-term success in the financial industry.

4. Research design and adopted methodology

4.1 Research design

This project will use a quantitative research methodology and a secondary data analysis technique to examine “The Impact of Brexit on UK Banks: Analyzing Opportunities and Challenges in Regulatory Frameworks.” The study mostly depends on current literature, papers, articles, and publications. The research will examine various sources, including academic journals, industry publications, regulatory body reports, and reliable research databases. The journals chosen will be those regarded as authoritative and renowned in banking, finance, and regulatory studies. Journals having a two, three, or four-star rating on their impact factor or citation index will be prioritized to guarantee the inclusion of high-quality and rigorous research. Regarding variables or information kinds, the study will concentrate on essential components of regulatory frameworks and their influence on UK banks. It covers regulatory framework changes as a result of Brexit, unique possibilities for UK banks within the new regulatory environment, problems experienced by UK banks in adapting to post-Brexit regulatory frameworks, tactics, and techniques implemented by UK banks to manage regulatory changes, and the effects of regulatory adaptations on UK banks’ competitiveness and performance. The research will examine material produced in the years leading up to and following the June 2016 Brexit referendum. It will guarantee a thorough examination of regulatory changes and their implications for UK banks in the context of Brexit.

4.2 Adopted Methodology

4.2.1 Data Collection: Secondary data will be gathered from trustworthy sources such as academic journals, industry reports, regulatory publications, and UK bank financial statements. The relevance of the data sources to the study objectives and the quality of the material given will be used to pick them.

4.2.2 Data Analysis: The obtained data will be analyzed using quantitative data analysis techniques. Statistical approaches such as descriptive statistics, regression analysis, and comparative analysis will be used to discover trends, patterns, and correlations between variables.

4.2.3 Regulatory Framework Analysis: The effects of Brexit on regulatory frameworks for UK banks will be studied by a thorough assessment and analysis of regulatory papers, policy developments, and industry recommendations. This research will shed light on the specific regulatory changes and their consequences for UK banks.

4.2.4 Opportunities and Challenges Analysis: The determined opportunities and challenges within the new regulatory framework will be evaluated based on the data collected. This research will examine market access, trade agreements, regulatory needs, and risk management practices and will analyze UK banks’ potential and challenges,

This study is undertaken to offer a complete understanding of how Brexit will change the regulatory regimes for UK banks by employing secondary analysis and a quantitative research technique. Reviewing regulatory paperwork and industry case studies could help understand UK banks’ possibilities and challenges. The results of this study will extend the understanding of the topic while also offering the opportunity to help regulators, industry stakeholders, and banks to navigate the post-Brexit regulations. The present research endeavours to provide an in-depth understanding of the impact of Brexit on UK banks within regulatory frameworks by employing a secondary data analysis technique and a wide range of credible sources. Current knowledge and insights may be extensively investigated using secondary data, allowing the study to add to the body of knowledge and benefit UK banks, industry stakeholders, and regulators in their decision-making.

5.  Conclusion

This study attempts to offer a detailed answer to the main question through an effective research methodology and data analysis tactics. The study seeks to present a thorough picture of UK banks’ possibilities and difficulties in the altering regulatory landscape post-Brexit by carefully assessing secondary data. The research will thoroughly assess relevant literature, industry papers, government publications, regulatory records, and financial statements from UK banks to address the fundamental issue. The systematic data collection will allow for a thorough understanding of the legislative changes and their ramifications for UK institutions. Secondary data will be extensively evaluated using qualitative and quantitative approaches to provide relevant insights. The qualitative study will include a thematic analysis of the gathered data to find and analyze key themes and sub-themes related to the impact of Brexit on UK bank regulatory frameworks. This comprehensive analysis will provide a clear grasp of the difficulties and possibilities due to regulatory reforms for UK banks. The study intends to find underlying patterns, trends, and viewpoints that provide light on the impact of Brexit on UK banks through thorough data coding, classification, and interpretation. Simultaneously, quantitative analysis techniques will be used to study the quantitative elements of the collected data. Before and after the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, data will be used to assess a range of performance measures, market developments, and criteria for compliance with legislation. The study will assess changes in those dimensions to provide quantitative evidence on the impact of Britain leaving the EU on UK banks’ competitiveness, market access, and compliance. Various kinds of data, both qualitatively and quantitatively, will have to be used. The study will collect and evaluates data to undertake a detailed and thorough assessment of the impact of the United Kingdom’s exit from the EU on British bank regulation. A synthesis of this type should enable the discovery of common themes, cohesiveness, or discrepancies in quantitative data, which might lead to a more comprehensive and correct interpretation of results. The study shall seek to take a significant view of changing regulatory frameworks about UK banks due to Britain’s departure. To adapt to these changes, it aims at identifying and studying the possibilities of such a new regulatory environment and its challenges for UK banks.

6.  Expected Outcome

The research looks at the regulatory environment for UK banks and its impact on competitiveness and performance. The Programme shall aim to expand the current information base, giving policymakers, industry stakeholders, and banks a good understanding of their situation through its presentation in an easily understandable format. This research will be carried out with a strict scientific design and methodology to assess the impact of the UK’s exit from the EU on the UK banking regulatory framework. The research is designed to provide the UK banking sector with critical information on its potential and constraints as it approaches an age after leaving the EU by systematically analyzing obtained secondary data combined with Qualitative & Quantitative Techniques and Synthesis findings. These findings will contribute to enhancing the process of policymaking and bank stability in the United Kingdom, as well as a more detailed understanding of the implications of Britain’s departure from the European Union for the financial system.

7.  References

Berger, H., & Badenhoop, N. (2018). Financial services and Brexit: Navigating towards future market access. European Business Organization Law Review, 19(4), 679–714.

Cazan, S. A. (2017). Brexit implications over the England banking system-An event study approach. Journal of Public Administration, 11, 81–92.

Chang, W. W. (2018). Brexit and its economic consequences. World Economy, 41(9), 2349–2373.

Espar, O., & Castell, J. (2020). Choice of law and jurisdiction in banking and finance contracts after Brexit: a perspective from Europe. Law and Financial Markets Review, 14(2), 121–127.

Howarth, D., & Quaglia, L. (2021). Brexit and the battle for financial services. In The Politics and Economics of Brexit (pp. 30–48). Routledge.

James, S., & Quaglia, L. (2019). Why does the United Kingdom (UK) have inconsistent preferences on financial regulation? The case of banking and capital markets. Journal of Public Policy, 39(1), 177–200.

James, S., & Quaglia, L. (2022). Rule maker or rule-taker? Brexit, finance, and UK regulatory autonomy. International Political Science Review, 43(3), 390–403.

Miethe, J., & Pothier, D. (2016). Brexit: What’s at Stake for the Financial Sector? DIW Economic Bulletin, 6(31), 364–372.

O Morgan, K. (2020). Was Brexit really about Europe? In Observatoire de la société britannique (pp. 9–26)

Obstfeld, M. (2016). The initial economic impact of Brexit: An update to early December 2016. Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, 2016(2), 359–366.

Ramiah, V., Pham, H. N. A., & Moosa, I. (2017). The sectoral effects of Brexit on the British economy: early evidence from the reaction of the stock market. Applied Economics49(26), 2508–2514.

Somai, M., & Biedermann, Z. (2016). Brexit: Reasons and challenges. Acta Oeconomica : Periodical of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, 66(s1), 137–156.

Sowels, N. (2019). Managing Brexit in Financial Services. Observatoire de La Société Britannique, 24, 141–159.

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