If we look at the world. financial centres in each country hardly change. Once established, it takes a hell lot of catastrophe to overthrow it. Big Banks are not that sensitive to tax rate. Business a lot more complicated than finding the cheapest place to operate. Otherwise, the Dakotas would have replaced NYC a long time ago.
Montreal lost because, we know why
In 2030 the Toronto area has grown to 8 million people. There has been almost no investment in transit except for a handful of light rail lines (which hardly anyone uses) and some minor improvements in bus service and Toronto traffic has become worse than LA. Toronto traffic is getting to be like Beijing in the bad old days (in the early 2000s or so) when it only had 2 subway lines as well but Beijing traffic has since drastically improved due to heavy investment in subways. The Gardiner, DVP, 401, 427, 400, 409, 404, 403, 410, QEW and every arterial road in the city are severely congested the entire day, 7 days a week. In rush hour you are lucky if you drive faster than 10km/h on the highway. Of course the 407 is congestion-free but it is a monopoly and it costs $1/km to use it in rush hour, and it is full of Mercedes and BMWs, and Highway 7 moves slower than bicycle speed. The two existing subway lines are so overcrowded, being much faster than trying to drive in rush hour, that "pushers" are employed in rush hour and the rear 2 cars are a "women only car". The GO trains continue to run once an hour and are packed. Emergency subway plans are proposed but there is no money for anything other than a few light rail lines, because the Ontario government is in danger of defaulting on its debt. The Chinese have become the highest income per capita country in the world while the Canadian economy has gone down the toilet.
As for financial centres never moving, I hope you're right but I suspect you're not. London and NYC are international alpha cities that aren't comparable to Toronto. We've already seen Canada's financial centre move from Montreal to Toronto. For that matter, Melbourne used to be Australia's financial centre but now it's Sydney, as you correctly mention. So beta-city financial centres have moved before.
You aren't going to see the financial centre moving to Calgary but you will see MORE financial activity occuring there. I actually see Toronto and Calgary being more synergistic than in direct competition. In my opinion Vancouver has much more to loose from a rising Calgary in terms of shifting trends. And Calgary has more to fear from Houston with respect to it's energy sector than a prosperous Toronto.
^Thanks for that. I was going to mention the downward trend in London but the link does it for me.
Toronto in 2030: A top 5 financial centre. And Allah willing we finally get our head out of collective arse and build PROPER transit. Because right now, we're beyond embarrassing ourselves and can't even get the half-assed shit started not to mention completed. Toronto will be an even better place to live than it is now and Durham will finally sink into the lake never to be heard of again. Toronto will have a real, proper mayor and people will finally be allowed to legally raise chickens. Graff will be encouraged in laneways and alleys as a form of public art and Rob Ford's war on graff will be the subject of a hilarious film about a crew who battle the forces of an evil, maniacal, and fascist government force bent on destroying the spice of life. Toronto in 2030 will become world-renowned for it's odd balance between being grimy and flash and for its ability to house people from otherwise warring factions without incident...which I suppose is one thing we're already well enough known for.
Toronto in 2030 will have the Portlands built out finally (geeeeze!) and the mouth of the Don naturalised.
Cherry Beach will still be a hangout of those still high as kites from last night's party and sitting on the dock, drinking gin out of the bottle will still be one of my top 20 things to do on a Sunday morning.
PS: Calgary will plateau in importance within 30 years and then decline. Sorry but their power and importance is mostly derived from an outdated and finite technology and resource. Vancouver has nothing to worry about in that regard (as if they were worried LOL!). Winnipeg will still be my fave city between Toronto and Van City and I will still drive Winnipeg to Calgary or Lethbridge straight so as to only spend one day driving the dreary prairies (no trees!).
So, I don't know....I suppose I'm saying that nothing much will change.
Let's not forget the Toronto exchange was larger and more influential then Montreal's exchange way before RBC and BMO moved head offices. Take a look at pictures of Montreal's financial industry in its heyday. It was just 2-3 blocks of 4-6 story buildings. It was never recognized internationally. It was easy for many players in the industry to move.
You can actually argue that, in Calgary's case, the benefits actually accrue to the people who live there, while in Toronto's case, the benefits accrue to outsiders and the costs (e.g. rising home prices) are imposed on locals.
For Alberta's oil sands to remain cost effective the price of oil must remain high. As i said earlier, should the price of oil hit the 90s level you will see Alberta's economy get hit hard. It's happened before and for anyone to think it can't happen again is ridiculous.
Saudi and several other oil reserves around the world have a cost advantage on Alberta.
Speak to many in the know and they'll tell you the biggest mistake Alberta has done is rely too heavily on oil revenue and not diversify its economy.
If the Dollar drops Ontario will be back.