HSBC posts £8.7bn profit as it braces for more fines

HSBC has reported its half-year profits are up 10 per cent to £8.7bn as it sets aside £731m to deal with a raft of ongoing regulatory investigations.

The bank posted a pre-tax profit of £7.9bn at the same time last year.

Its interim results, published today, reveal HSBC has made a provision of £731m to cover “settlements and provisions in connection with legal matters”.

The bank is subject to an FCA past business review into its anti-money laundering systems and controls, and has already made payments totalling £1.2bn to US authorities related to not complying with anti-money laundering rules in the past.

HSBC says it is also co-operating with global authorities over allegations that its Swiss private banking arm helped clients evade tax.

Other live investigations include reviews into the manipulation of benchmark rates such as Libor and foreign exchange rates, as well as claims over fixing the price of precious metals.

The bank is in the process of setting up a ring-fenced retail bank. The new retail headquarters will be based in Birmingham and should be completed by 2018.

HSBC says it has started “detailed work” into reviewing where to base its global headquarters, which is expected to be concluded by the end of the year.