HSBC pre-tax global profits slump by halve

Banking group HSBC found its pre-tax profits dropped by 51 percent from $10.2 billion compare to the same period; the first six month of 2009.

Group Chairman Stephen Green said “it may be that we have passed, or are about to pass, the bottom of the cycle in the financial markets”.

“Of all the big banks in the US and UK, HSBC is the one that comes closest to being able to claim – without stretching credibility too much – that it’s a proper commercial operation, not too reliant on finance or insurance from taxpayers,” he added.

HSBC is in the process of closing most of its retail lending operations in the US, having taken hefty losses from mortgages which went unpaid.

HSBC has not had to go to governments for extra cash. It decided instead to ask existing shareholders for more money through a rights issue in April, which raised $17.8bn.

Source: BBC, CNN, HSBC


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