Financial powerhouse UBS is considering returning to NYC from Connecticut, and Congressman Anthony Weiner faces increasing opposition to his continuing in office.
UBS to NYC
As has been widely reported, UBS, the Swiss investment bank, is considering moving its North American headquarters to New York City. Such a move would reverse the move from New York City to the Connecticut suburbs that occurred fifteen years ago, and move three thousand jobs from Connecticut to New York City. The firm has faced difficulty recruiting the best talent because of its distance from New York City, and, while having several years left on its lease, the leadership of UBS is actively investigating multiple NYC properties.
As we discussed recently, New York City is by far the leader in corporate headquarters for the Fortune 500. New York City is also a leader in the role of North American or US headquarters for foreign companies. Maintaining that lead and increasing the economic success of our city will require us to attract headquarters from other locations while also preventing the departure of our large employers. If New York City can add a major international financial firm and its 3,000 employees in the next few years, the impact will be meaningful. Such a move might also inspire other firms located outside of our city to relocate in order to compete for talent. UBS could be the beginning of a new trend that helps save the New York City economy and solidify our position as the corporate headquarters location of choice for large companies.
Let us encourage our elected and business leaders to be aggressive, creative, and thoughtful in finding solutions for companies who seek to come to or stay in our city.
As pressure mounts on Congressman Weiner to resign, we point out that he was elected by his constituents and not by the other members of Congress. Moreover, polls show that his constituents continue to want him to serve in Congress on their behalf. He undoubtedly has a great deal of work to do to repair his relationships with his family and his supporters, and he should not be asked to focus on gaining the support of other members of Congress while he has so many other people to engage in the humbling process of seeking forgiveness. Because of the recent scandal, it is unlikely that he will be a serious candidate for Mayor in 2013, and he may find that the State Legislature and the Governor take advantaged of his weakened political position to eliminate his district before the 2012 elections (New York State must eliminate two Congressional districts in preparation for next year's national elections). But, another election will come soon enough, and voters in Weiner's district can decide whether he should continue to serve them.
If he decides to leave Congress to focus on his family, we will understand why such a decision might be wise. If he decides to remain in office to attempt to fulfill his duties to his constituents, we will respect that choice and wish him success.