HSBC’s profits dive 67% in the second quarter as COVID-19 and US-China geopolitical trade risk hit the lender

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FILE PHOTO: A man walks past a logo of HSBC at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia August 6, 2019. REUTERS/Lim Huey Teng/File Photo

HSBC reported that profits dropped more than two-thirds in the second quarter of 2020 as the bank faced coronavirus-driven challenges in the market.
The British bank reported profit before tax of $1.1 billion, 67% lower than the $3.2 billion it made in the first quarter of 2020.
The bank said it is accelerating its transformation programme it announced in February, including job cuts and merging its retail, wealth and private banking businesses.
Shares in HSBC slipped on the earnings, falling 4% in European morning trade.
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HSBC reported a plunge in profits-before-tax of 67% in the second quarter of 2020 as COVID-19 and a period of geopolitical risk weighed on the lender.

The British bank reported profit before tax of $1.1 billion, 67% lower than the $3.2 billion it made in the first quarter of 2020.

Profits before tax were also down 82% compared to the same quarter in 2019, it said.

Noel Quinn, HSBC’s chief executive, said: “Our first half performance was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, falling interest rates, increased geopolitical risk and heightened levels of market volatility.”

Here are the key numbers:

Profit before tax: $1.089 billion compated to $6.194 billion in the second quarter of 2019.
Earnings per share: $0.01 versus analyst estimates of $0.081.
Operating income: $13.15 billion versus analyst estimates of $12.59 billion.

The bank said it was also “accelerating” a so-called transformation programme it announced in February this year, which will see thousands of jobs cut.

“Having paused parts of our transformation programme in response to the Covid-19 outbreak, we now intend to accelerate implementation of the plans we announced in February. We are also looking at what additional actions we need to take in light of the new economic environment to make HSBC a stronger and more sustainable business,” Quinn said.

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In February, the bank announced it would cut about 35,000 jobs and merge its retail and wealth divisions.

HSBC said in its earnings release: “We are moving forward with these plans wherever we can. We have already begun combining our wholesale back office operations, and brought our retail, wealth and private banking businesses together into a single global business – Wealth and Personal Banking.”

Read more: A Wall Street quant chief breaks down why a COVID-19 vaccine is not the silver bullet investors have been hoping for — and warns another stock-market meltdown is likely

The British lender also said geopolitical tensions weighed on the bank.

“Current tensions between China and the US inevitably create challenging situations for an organisation with HSBC’s footprint. We will face any political challenges that arise with a focus on the long-term needs of our customers and the best interests of our investors,” HSBC said.

Read more: These 16 global stocks have at least 20% upside in the next year — and they’ll continue to thrive as COVID-19 accelerates a crucial technological shift, UBS says

HSBC shares slipped 4% as of 4:12 a.m. ET.

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Source:: Usa Today News


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