HSBC profits jump to $17.2bn on Asia growth

HSBCHSBC has posted a pre-tax profit of $17.2bn (£12.3bn) in 2017, saying its focus on Asia was driving growth.
The results represent a 141% jump on the $7.1bn profit of the previous year.
But that comparison is flattering, given 2016 saw the bank incur a string of one-off costs including the sale of its Brazil business.
Though well known on the British High Street, HSBC makes most of its money outside the UK, with Asia accounting for the bulk of global profits.
And the bank said the prospect of regional Asian trade deals and lending linked to China’s Belt and Road projects “provided cause for optimism”.
“A large increase in reported profit before tax reflected both a healthy business and the non-recurrence of significant items from 2016,” said group chairman Mark Tucker.
While an stark improvement on 2016’s results, the profit is still lower than the $18.9bn reported in 2015.
HSBC, Europe’s largest bank, has been focussing on a drive to streamline its business and slash costs.
Later this week, chief executive Stuart Gulliver will hand over the reins to current retail banking and wealth management head John Flint, after seven years at the helm.
Mr Flint has said he wants to speed up the pace of change at the firm. -BBC

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