HSBC Holdings Plc is planning to cut up to 10,000 jobs, more than 4% of its workforce, as interim Chief Executive Officer Noel Quinn seeks to reduce costs across the banking group, the Financial Times reported on Sunday.
The plan represents the lender’s most ambitious attempt in years to cut costs, the newspaper said, citing two people briefed on the matter. It said the cuts will focus mainly on high-paid roles.
HSBC declined to comment on the FT report.
The bank had 237,685 full-time employees at the end of June 2019, according to its 2019 interim report.
HSBC could announce the beginning of the latest cost-cutting drive and job cuts when it reports third-quarter results later this month, the FT said, citing one person briefed on the matter.
Quinn became interim CEO in August after the bank announced the surprise departure of John Flint, saying it needed a change at the top to address “a challenging global environment.”
Flint’s exit was a result of differences of opinion with chairman Mark Tucker over topics including approaches to cutting expenses, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters in August.
Any job cuts implemented as part of the latest plan would come on top of the redundancies announced earlier, the FT said.
HSBC said it would be laying off about 4,000 people this year, and issued a gloomier business outlook due to an escalation of a trade war between China and the United States, an easing monetary policy cycle, unrest in its key Hong Kong market and Brexit.
Former HSBC Group CEO Stuart Gulliver announced plans to cut 30,000 jobs when he took the job in 2011 as part of a programme to cut $3.5 billion in costs over three years and raise the bank’s return on equity to 12-15%.