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HSBC half-year profits up 5% after turbulent 2016

HSBC’s profits rose 5% in the first half of the year after a turbulent 2016.

The results were better than expected with Europe’s largest bank reporting that its pre-tax profit for the first six months to June came in at $10.2bn (£7.8bn), compared with $9.7bn (£7.4bn) for the same period last year.
The bank’s operating profits dropped 12% to $16.4bn (£12.5bn), partly down to a sell-off of its Brazil operations.
HSBC also announced a share buyback of up to $2bn, which it said it expected complete by the end of 2017, raising the amount of total stock it has pledged to buy since the second half of 2016 to $5.5bn.
The figures come after the bank warned in February of the challenges posed by Brexit and Donald Trump’s presidency in the US as it reported a 62% fall in earnings for 2016.
The London-based global lender has been on a recovery drive during the last two years to streamline the business and reduce costs.

In the midst of a revamp it has laid off tens of thousands of staff and shifted more of its focus towards Asia.
HSBC chairman Douglas Flint struck a positive tone in his response to the half year results, describing them as “extremely pleasing”.
He also attributed the bank’s performance to several factors: “Markets-based revenues benefited from market share advances, commercial banking customer activity was robust, wealth management and insurance revenues were notably stronger in Hong Kong, and credit experience globally remained remarkably sound.”
Mr Flint said there were still “uncertainties arising from increasing geopolitical tensions and ambiguous predictions around the shape of transition to, and final form of, the UK’s future relationship with its major trading partners in the EU” post-Brexit, but described HSBC’s performance as “resilient”.
HSBC confirmed earlier this year that it may have to move 1,000 roles from London to Paris due to Brexit over the next couple of years.

Source: Sky

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