HSBC Q3 pretax profit climbs 32%

HSBC HQ London 3

HSBC Monday reported a better than expected 32 percent rise in pretax profit for the third quarter, as lower fines and settlements offset a decline in revenue.

The bank's pretax profit was $6.1 billion, up from $4.6 billion in the same period a year ago, HSBC said as the impact of a strategic review announced in June starts to take effect.

That was more than the consensus estimate of $5.2 billion in a Reuters poll.

Adjusted revenue was down 4 percent on year as the stock market correction in Asia affected its Principal Retail Banking & Wealth Management unit, while revenue was also lower in the Global Banking & Markets unit.

Reported operating expenses of $9.0 billion were 19 percent lower than in the same period last year.

This largely reflected a net favorable movement in significant items compared with a year ago, principally a reduction in fines, settlements and UK customer redress, as well as the favorable effects of currency translation between the periods, HSBC said.

"There is more to achieve on costs and we expect the measures we have already taken to have a further impact in the fourth quarter. We also started a number of additional initiatives in the third quarter that will deliver savings before the end of the year," HSBC said in a statement.

Net interest income, the difference between what HSBC earns in interest and what it pays when it borrows, was $8.03 billion during the third quarter, down 8.28 percent from a year ago.

HSBC also noted that the management is undertaking a review to assess the best place for HSBC's headquarters to be located to enhance shareholder value and the bank's strategic opportunities.

HSBC's board will take the final decision on the location and an announcement will be made when the board makes its final decision and, if necessary, a further update will be provided at the time of the full year results announcement.

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