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Could Midland Bank be set for a comeback?

Industry experts believe HSBC may resurrect the old Midland brand, before selling off the UK arm of its business.

The group, which today outlined plans to cut as many as 8,000 British jobs, is moving its head office to Birmingham and said it plans to rebrand its UK retail banking business.

Economics Editor Richard Edgar reports on the changes and a potential return to the "Midland" name HSBC dropped 23 years ago:


HSBC plans branch closures in Britain

Along with the announcement of 7,000-8,000 UK job cuts, HSBC has confirmed that it will "trim" its 1,057 branches across the UK.

HSBC plans to 'trim' its UK branches

The group said it aims to cut its worldwide network of branches by 12%, with the UK being one of seven regions to be impacted - but it declined to give further details for British branch closures.

HSBC's British high street operations are also set to undergo a rebrand, CEO Stuart Gulliver said. They will operate under a new brand name that is yet to be decided on.

HSBC's UK head office is being relocated from London to Birmingham by 2019 amid regulatory "ringfencing" rules, giving rise to speculation that the group's retail arm will see a return to the "Midland" brand.

Its UK branches used to be known as Midland Bank before they were swallowed up by HSBC in 1992.

HSBC to decide on HQ move 'by the end of the year'

HSBC will decide on whether to move its headquarters from London by the end of the year.

Any move that goes ahead will take two years to execute, ITV News Business Editor Joel Hills reported.

The bank, which today announced it is axing between 7,000 and 8,000roles from its 48,000-strong UK workforce as part of a cost-cutting strategy, said it is "too soon" to say whether it will keep its UK head office.


'Frontline staff are being punished for actions of bankers'

Unite has called on HSBC to make any job cuts "voluntary" as it blamed the bank's expected cull of its UK workforce on the misconduct of senior and investment bankers.

HSBC, Europe's largest bank, is expected to slash as many as 8,000 UK jobs as part of a global restructuring initiative.

Unite are seeking to meet with UK chief executive Antonio Simoes as soon as possible to demand that any redundancies are through voluntary means or managed through natural attrition.

After all the scandals of recent years, frontline staff have suffered time and time again as they are forced to pay for the mistakes of others with their jobs, their terms and conditions and their reputation.

– Dominic Hook, Unite national office for finance

HSBC high street branches 'should prepare for job losses'

High street branches of HSBC will face job losses as part of the banking giant's plan to cut 8,000 jobs in the UK, a financial commentator has said.

Justin Urquhart Stewart speaking to Good Morning Britain. Credit: ITV/Good Morning Britain

The bank said today it was undertaking a "significant" reshaping of the business by cutting up to 25,000 jobs worldwide.

Justin Urquhart Stewart told ITV's Good Morning Britain that while he expected the investment side of the bank to "take the brunt" of the cuts, workers in high street stores should prepare for a reduction in staff.

Warning of "big changes" in the UK, Mr Stewart said: "All the banks are skinnying down their branch networks and even in those branches there is more automation and less people."

HSBC's strategy to cut costs and reshape the business

As HSBC is poised to cut thousands of jobs, chief executive Stuart Gulliver said that "world has changed" and the bank needs to change with it, as he outlined the bank's strategic plan to cut costs.

HSBC CEO Stuart Gulliver will present the bank's strategy to investors today Credit: PA

We recognise that the world has changed and we need to change with it. That is why we are outlining the following... strategic actions that will further transform our organisation.

The world is increasingly connected, with Asia expected to show high growth and become the centre of global trade over the next decade.

I am confident that our actions will allow us to capture expected future growth opportunities and deliver further value to shareholders.

– HSBC Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver

Key points from HSBC's cost-cutting strategy:

  • Cut costs by $4.5 billion (£3 billion) to $5 billion (£3.3 billion) a year by 2017
  • Sell operations in Turkey and Brazil, but retain a corporate presence in Brazil
  • Reduce the bank's risk-weighted assets (RWAs) by at least 25%
  • Set up a UK ring-fenced bank
  • Increase investment in Asia

HSBC to cut up to 25,000 jobs globally

HSBC is expected to announce global job losses of up to 25,000 today - affecting 8,000 of the bank's 48,000 UK employees.

As many as 8,000 UK jobs could be axed by HSBC today Credit: PA

The bank said it is planning a reduction of around 10% of its full-time workforce.

Chief executive Stuart Gulliver will present an update to investors today and could also reveal more details of how HSBC will decide where to base its headquarters.

It recently announced that it was considering a move away from the UK following "regulatory and structural reforms".

The bank is seeking to deliver annual cost savings of around £2.9 billion to £3.3 billion by the end of 2017.

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