HSBC boss: Soft Brexit could reduce our job losses

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HSBC’s UK chief executive has said that the bank may end up cutting less than the 1,000 jobs it has predicted if the UK opts for a ‘soft’ rather than a ‘hard’ Brexit.

Ian Stuart said this morning that the bank, which has around 43,000 employees in the UK, could cut up to 1,000 jobs, but would be here for “many years to come” and was contingency planning for the “uncharted waters” of how a Brexit deal may look.

Speaking to the BBC, he said: “Depending on a hard or soft Brexit that number [1,000 jobs] might be slightly less than that, so it’s going to be updated all the time. We’re still in uncharted waters today and we don’t know exactly how it’s going to look, so we’ve got to plan ahead.

“At the moment the number is capped at 1,000. It may be slightly less.”

The bank, which is currently targeting smaller pot customers with a robo-advice offering, has previously warned that some of its larger clients are asking for their business to be moved from the UK to offices in mainland Europe before a final Brexit deal is struck.

HSBC is also one of a number of banks to have projected job relocations or losses in the wake of Brexit.