Standard Chartered Operating Profit Falls As Wholesale Slips

Standard Chartered Shanghai Towers

Standard Chartered said operating profit in the first quarter declined 'slightly as wholesale banking revenue fell.

Bloomberg reports that revenue grew from a year earlier as an increase in consumer banking income offset a 'mid single digit decrease in wholesale operations, the London-based company said in a statement Wednesday, without giving specific figures.

CEO Peter Sands, 51, is trying to increase revenue by at least 10% a year while keeping cost growth at a similar pace, as he hires and opens branches in China and Africa.

Standard Chartered, which gets most of its profit from Asia, last year reached a $667m settlement with U.S. regulators who said it violated sanctions with Iran.

'Stanchart will surely grow this year, but it remains to be seen whether they can achieve their double-digit targets', said Sandy Mehta, chief executive officer of Value Investment Principals Ltd. in Hong Kong, which doesn’t own shares in the bank. 'The year is off to a slow start so some catch-up will be required'.

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