Daily Management Review

HSBC Announces Acceleration Of Restructuring Plan And Cost Cutting


HSBC Announces Acceleration Of Restructuring Plan And Cost Cutting
The London based lender HSBC, the largest European bank in terms of assets, has said that it will further bring down costs of operations compared to what it had suggested previously as a part of its efforts to accelerate its restructuring plan.
This announcement was made by the bank while reporting its performance for the third quarter. The bank reported pre-tax profit of $3.1bn during the quarter which was 35 per cent6 lower than the same quarter a year ago.
The bank also reported a 11 per cent year on year fall in its revenues for the quarter at $11.9bn with its Asian business accounting for $3.2bn.
Nothing so far has been said by the lender about whether its plans of accelerating its restructuring will result in more job losses.
A detailed plan for the restructuring will be provided by it in February next year when the bank reports its full year results, the bank said.
In February this year, its plans of restructuring were first announced by HSBC when the bank had predicted loss of about 35,000 jobs. However that plan was put on hold because of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
But in August the bank said that it would accelerate the plan after it reported a 65 per cent drop in pre-tax profits for the first half of the year.
The impact of lower interest rates, and a lower share of profit from its Saudi subsidiary were primarily responsible for the fall in revenues in the third quarter, the bank said.
There were however some bright spots, said the bank's chief executive Noel Quinn.
"These were promising results against a backdrop of the continuing impacts of Covid-19 on the global economy," he said. "I'm pleased with the significantly lower credit losses in the quarter, and we are moving at pace to adapt our business model to a protracted low interest rate environment."
Earlier the bank had announced the setting aside of between $8bn and $13bn to tackle issue of bad loans which it expects will happened as creditors will default on payment due to the economic hit of the Covid-19 pandemic. However the lender now exp3ects the loan losses sot be on the lower side of its prediction.
The share price of the bank dropped to its lowest since 1995 in September this year as allegations surfaced of the bank previously allowing fraudsters to transfer millions of dollars around the world and had not reacted even though it was aware of such transactions. 
Criticism from the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was also faced by the bank over its stand of supporting the controversial new national security law imposed in Hong Kong.
With a plan to cut $4.5bn in costs by 2022, HSBC was already restructuring even before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
At one point in time, there were more than 300,000 people employed with the bank which has come down with significant trimming of its operations from since the global financial crisis in 2008.