HSBC profits plunge 45% as low interest rates and bad loans take their toll


HSBC saw a 14% drop in adjusted revenue in the last quarter as lower interest rates weighed on its operations. Combined with a 60% increase in credit impairment charges to $ 1.2 billion due to significant economic uncertainty in the UK, the result was a 50% drop in adjusted pre-tax profit to $ 2. $ 2 billion.

Europe’s largest bank suffered an 8% drop in adjusted income for the full year and a 45% drop in adjusted pre-tax profits to $ 12.1 billion. In addition, its credit impairment charges jumped about 226% to $ 8.8 billion.

“In 2020, our employees have provided an exceptional level of support to our clients under very difficult circumstances, while our balance sheet and strong liquidity have reassured those who rely on us,” said CEO Noel Quinn in the publication of results.

“We achieved this while delivering a strong financial performance in the context of the pandemic – particularly in Asia – and laying a solid foundation for our future growth. “

Indeed, HSBC made $ 12.8 billion in adjusted pre-tax profits from its operations in Asia last year, which offset a loss of $ 4.2 billion in Europe.

Three of the four banking segments generated less revenue in 2020. Adjusted pre-tax profits fell 53% in the private and wealth banking division, 74% in the commercial banking division and 7% in the banking segment. global and markets.

HSBC shares were last down 1.7% on London’s FTSE 100 index on Tuesday, ranking them among the worst performing for major European banks.

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