Brexit shock sees HSBC net profit plunge 82%

HSBC has revealed its net profit plunged 82% in 2016, with “largely unexpected economic and political events” to blame.

The bank said the Brexit vote, President Trump’s protectionist stance and uncertainty surrounding upcoming European elections had contributed to “volatile market conditions”.

Net profit stood at $2.48bn (£1.99bn) for the year, compared with $13.52bn (£10.87bn) in 2015.

In the final quarter of 2016, the bank swung to a $3.45bn (£2.77bn) pre-tax loss.

Making a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, HSBC group chairman Douglas Flint reaffirmed earlier reports that 1,000 roles may be moved from London to Paris – depending on how Brexit negotiations pan out over the next two years.

HSBC has been struggling to boost profits since June’s Brexit vote – with stricter capital rules and low interest rates also impeding its performance.

In 2015, it announced a radical overhaul to cut annual costs by $5bn (£4bn) over two years by shedding 50,000 jobs worldwide, exiting unprofitable businesses and focusing more on Asia.

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