[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Monday, 5 March 2007, 10:02 GMT
HSBC sees record profits of $22bn
HSBC bank
HSBC has hit record profits despite tough times in the US
HSBC, Europe's biggest bank, has reported a 5% rise in profits to a record $22.08bn (11.5bn).

The profit rise was within the range of analysts' expectations, but came against a backdrop of tough conditions in the US.

HSBC said bad debt provisions for 2006 would be about $10.5bn (5bn) as a result of the slowing housing market in the US.

The bank is facing substantial bad debts because of US mortgage defaults.

Global spread

HSBC chairman Stephen Green said the growth in profits in the face of the US situation was "a testament to the strength and diversity" of the bank.

The collective sigh of relief [in response] to these numbers was reflected by an early uptick in the share price, very much against the flow of the market
Richard Hunter, Hargreaves Lansdown

That diversity was reinforced by a deal unveiled earlier on Monday between HSBC and India's Canara Bank.

HSBC will take a 26% stake in a joint insurance business with Canara and New Delhi-based Oriental Bank of Commerce.

HSBC shares rose 1% in London, despite a global sell-off of shares that saw markets falling worldwide.

Richard Hunter, head of UK Equities at stockbrokers Hargreaves Lansdown, said HSBC's profits were a morale-booster in a falling market.

"The collective sigh of relief [in response] to these numbers was reflected by an early uptick in the share price, very much against the flow of the market."

HSBC's US boss, Bobby Mehta, quit his post in February after the bank issued a warning about its exposure to the housing market there.

Significant numbers of HSBC customers had difficulty meeting repayments on large mortgages while US house prices stalled.




SEE ALSO
HSBC exec goes after US home woes
22 Feb 07 |  Business
US housing slowdown knocks HSBC
08 Feb 07 |  Business
HSBC cautious on UK consumer debt
05 Dec 06 |  Business
HSBC to 'review' online security
10 Aug 06 |  Business
HSBC profits in emerging markets
31 Jul 06 |  Business
HSBC buys Panama bank for $1.8bn
21 Jul 06 |  Business

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific