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HSBC makes big banking bucks

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07/03/2006

Banking giant HSBC has announced pre-tax profits of £11.5bn, a record figure for a UK bank and well ahead of the City’s expectations. However, less than one-fifth of the profits were generated in the UK.

HSBC, which has 110 million customers in 79 countries, was mainly an Asian bank until it took over the UK’s Midland Bank in 1992, and the bulk of its business is still transacted in Asia, especially Hong Kong and China.

“The figures show that HSBC are very big bankers indeed,” said City analyst Colin Perry. “The profit is absolutely staggering and with China increasingly on the road to out-and-out capitalism, the bank’s regional presence suggests huge potential for more growth.”

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