European banking correspondent
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Jun 10, 2015

New StanChart boss Winters says bank needs to strengthen finances

LONDON, June 10 (Reuters) – Standard Chartered’s
new chief executive Bill Winters wants the Asia-focused bank
needed to strengthen its finances, simplify and restructure to
achieve better returns, he said in a letter to staff on his
first day in charge.

“We need to reinforce our foundations; streamline our
business; strengthen our financial position; and re-orient the
bank for better returns on our capital,” Winters said in the
letter seen by Reuters on Wednesday.

Jun 9, 2015

HSBC to shed up to 50,000 jobs, slash investment bank

HONG KONG/LONDON (Reuters) – HSBC will shed almost 50,000 jobs and take an axe to its investment bank, cutting the assets of Europe’s biggest lender by a quarter in a bid to simplify and improve its sluggish performance.

The bank said on Tuesday about half the staff cuts will come from the sale of businesses in Brazil and Turkey. The other half will come from cutting about 10 percent of the remaining 233,000 staff by consolidating IT and back office operations and closing branches. About 7,000-8,000 cuts are expected to be in Britain, or one in six UK staff.

Jun 2, 2015

Too big to succeed? Investors want ‘radical surgery’ at HSBC

LONDON (Reuters) – No longer feared as “too big to fail”, shareholders are weighing whether HSBC is now “too big to succeed”, and want to know next week how the bank’s bosses propose to increase profitability at a sprawling group beset by huge costs.

Investors believe CEO Stuart Gulliver and Chairman Douglas Flint need to announce bold moves to restore the London-based bank’s flagging fortunes at a strategy day on June 9.

Jun 2, 2015

HSBC set to cut thousands of jobs globally – Sky News

LONDON/HONG KONG, June 2 (Reuters) – HSBC Holdings Plc
could announce thousands of job cuts at a strategy day
next week, Sky News reported on Monday, part of chief executive
Stuart Gulliver’s overhaul plan that could also see him sell
operations in Brazil and Turkey and take a knife to his
investment bank.

An estimated 10,000 to 20,000 jobs will be axed, Sky News
said, citing unidentified sources. The number has not yet been
finalised and Gulliver will lay out the plans at an investor
presentation on June 9, the broadcaster said. (bit.ly/1cu2n87)

May 28, 2015

RBS may need to bulk up Williams & Glyn to improve competition

LONDON, May 28 (Reuters) – Royal Bank of Scotland
could be asked to increase the size of the Williams & Glyn
business it plans to sell next year after the British government
asked for a speedy review of its impact on competition in the
banking market.

RBS must sell Williams & Glyn, which consists of 307
branches, as a condition of having received state aid during the
2007-09 financial crisis. The Treasury on Thursday asked the
Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to assess what impact
the sale would have on the British banking market.

May 27, 2015

Bank of England to finalise ringfencing rules in 2016

LONDON, May 27 (Reuters) – The Bank of England said it will
finalise rules designed to protect banks’ domestic retail
customers from riskier parts of their operations in the first
half of next year.

The BoE’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) said on
Wednesday it had made a number of amendments to its original
proposals but didn’t consider that responses to its initial
proposals had necessitated major changes.

May 22, 2015

UK lawmaker Tyrie set to lead bank scrutiny in parliament again

LONDON, May 22 (Reuters) – British lawmaker Andrew Tyrie is
on course to win a second term as head of a powerful panel in
parliament that scrutinises the work of the finance ministry,
the Bank of England and the London’s financial services
industry.

The influence and importance of the Treasury Select
Committee has risen since the 2007-09 financial crisis, when
more than 60 billion pounds ($93.7 billion) of taxpayer cash was
used to save banks and sharpened the focus on the failings of
bankers, politicians and regulators.

May 22, 2015

Misconduct bill tops $235 bln as banks struggle to shake off past sins

LONDON, May 22 (Reuters) – Twenty of the world’s biggest
banks have paid more than $235 billion in fines and compensation
in the last seven years for a litany of misdeeds that has
scarred the industry and is delaying its rehabilitation.

The scale of the payouts, equivalent to the annual economy
of Greece or Portugal, has hampered banks’ efforts to rebuild
capital, reduced dividends for investors and cut the amount
firms are able to lend.

May 20, 2015

Banks to get SEC waivers following forex guilty pleas – sources

NEW YORK/LONDON (Reuters) – Citigroup Inc and JPMorgan
Morgan Chase & Co are receiving regulatory waivers to
allow them to continue to quickly issue new securities and
continue doing business with mutual funds and exchange-traded
funds, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission is expected to
publicly confirm the waivers will be in place once the banks
formally enter criminal guilty pleas to manipulating foreign
exchange rates, possibly near the end of the business day on
Wednesday, the sources said.

May 15, 2015

HSBC Chairman: Should banks be mortgage lenders?

LONDON, May 15 (Reuters) – Blue chip banks could provide a
bigger stimulus to Europe’s flagging economy if they pared back
low-return mortgage lending to pump more firepower into small
business and consumer credit, the chairman of HSBC told
Reuters.

Douglas Flint, boss of Europe’s largest bank, said
policymakers and banks needed to reconsider the “natural
long-term holders” of Europe’s multi-trillion euro mortgage
market and debate the case for encouraging other money managers
to play a bigger role.

    • About Steve

      "Responsible for overseeing coverage of the European bank sector and direct coverage of the international UK-based banks, based in London. Have been in current role for three years, and for previous three years was UK banking reporter. Have over 15 years experience as a financial newswire journalist in London and New York."
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