Remember all the talk about how America was losing its competitive edge in financial services? For "America", read "New York City", of course. Well, the concern may be lessening. At a conference on the future of New York hosted by the Economist on Tuesday, Mayor Bloomberg was apparently very upbeat. According to the New York Times City Blog - "Economic Threat From London? Not to Worry, Mayor Insists", "Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg — fresh from a visit to England, during which he stayed at his London apartment — presented an extremely cheerful report card on the state of New York’s economy." Later panelists apparently talked about how NYC could stay competitive (unlike the Mets) -- but there did not seem to be any wailing and gnashing of teeth.
Is there really a threat of London gaining ground on NYC as a financial center? Probably yes. Is it a major blow to the US financial services industry? Probably no. Improvements to US financial regulation and other economic policies are needed -- not just for the competitiveness of NYC as a financial hub but for the economic system of the US as a whole. As we develop our I-Cubed Economy, our policies will need to catch up with where our financial system has already gone.
But, as for all the hype of the-sky-is-falling, a quote from that wonderful New York show - Saturday Night Live - may be called for: "never mind".