HSBC 2019 pre-tax profits drop by a third to US$13.3 billion

Business

HSBC 2019 pre-tax profits drop by a third to US$13.3 billion

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Print this page Email A Friend!


HONG KONG, China (AFP) — HSBC reported earlier this week that its 2019 pre-tax profits fell by a third on year to US$13.3 billion, as interim chief Noel Quinn warned that the global banking giant was “not delivering acceptable returns”.

The Asia-focused lender has been trying to lower costs as it faces a multitude of uncertainties caused by the grinding US-China trade war, Britain's departure from the European Union, and now the deadly new coronavirus in China.

Quinn, who took over as acting CEO after the shock ouster in August of John Flint, has been tasked with overhauling the sprawling international bank which spans more than 50 countries but makes the vast majority of its profit in Asia.

HSBC said a 33 per cent drop in annual profits last year compared to the US$19.89 billion it made in 2018 was largely down to a US$7.3-billion goodwill impairment related to its investment and commercial banking businesses in Europe.

It also reported a loss before tax of US$3.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2019.

But the bank also gave fresh details on plans to overhaul its more underperforming areas, particularly its businesses in the United States and Europe.

“The group's 2019 performance was resilient, however parts of our business are not delivering acceptable returns,” Quinn said.

Last year HSBC announced plans to axe some 4,700 jobs, primarily outside of its more profitable businesses within the Greater China region.

Tuesday's statement suggests further job losses are likely in the coming months.

In the US, the bank said it planned to reduce its branch network by around 30 per cent, consolidate back and middle office activities, and lower operating expenses by 10-15 per cent.

“We also intend to reduce our sales and trading and equity research in Europe and transition our structured products capabilities from the UK to Asia,” the bank added.


Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at http://bit.ly/epaper-login


ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT