HSBC says US remains vital market despite retail exit

Reassurance comes a day after the bank sells its US retail banking business

HSBC  is also seeking to sell its French retail banking operations, and has entered final negotiations to sell that business to private equity firm Cerberus. Photograph: Getty Images

HSBC is also seeking to sell its French retail banking operations, and has entered final negotiations to sell that business to private equity firm Cerberus. Photograph: Getty Images

 

HSBC said on Friday the US remains key to its growth plans, a day after announcing the sale of its mass market retail US banking business in a country where it has long struggled to make a strong profit.

HSBC’s business in the US will focus on internationally-oriented corporate customers, chief executive Noel Quinn told the lender’s annual shareholder meeting in London.

“The US is key to our international network and an important contributor to our growth plans,” Mr Quinn said.

HSBC announced on Thursday its long-awaited US retail exit as it shifts its business more towards Asia, where it has had greater success making money.

The lender is also seeking to sell its French retail banking operations as part of the same strategy, and has entered final negotiations to sell that business to private equity firm Cerberus, Reuters reported in March.

A small group of protesters outside the meeting criticised HSBC for not forgiving poor countries’ debt to allow them to better cope with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, something charities have called on the private sector to do. – Reuters