HSBC, Europe’s largest bank with $2.5 billion in assets, is cutting 35,000 jobs and dumping $100 billion in riskier investments by the end of 2022.
The bank is shrinking its lending in Europe by 35 percent and in the U.S. by 45 percent, while redirecting those assets to higher-growth areas mainly in Asia, where it is also relocating some operations from London.
To conserve cash, the bank will stop buying back its own shares but will continue to pay stock dividends.
The move is one of the most thorough restructurings in the bank’s 155-year history, according to Noel Quinn, interim CEO.
The stock market greeted the 19 February announcement by knocking 6 percent off HSBC’s share price.
TRENDPOST: Europe’s banks are struggling to find ways to survive in a prolonged era of low or negative interest rates. Last year, the troubled Deutsche Bank revealed a plan to cut 18,000 jobs worldwide.
TREND FORECAST: Negative interest rates in Europe and Japan will continue to deepen the banking sector’s turmoil. More banks will take increasingly drastic steps to shrink staff, consolidate operations, or merge. Some big names will be bought out… and others, including the “too big to fail,” will go under when the “Greatest Depression” strikes in 2021.

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