According to UK news and media, HSBC’s threat to leave the United Kingdom for Asia, mainly Hong Kong, is not entirely bad news. HSBC is part of a big problem where the public perceives banks as money-grubbing entities. With PPI, Libor rigging and questionable Swiss bank practices, HSBC won’t be hearing more goodbyes than their own.
The Guardian had written that HSBC’s leaving is possibly an empty threat or a cause for celebration as one of the UK’s biggest financial headaches cannot repeat the same trouble it caused more than five years ago. This was payment protection insurance.
The UK bank had also gained billions in profit for rigging benchmark London rates for home, mortgage and business loans.
Today, HSBC adds millions per quarter for payment protection insurance along with other UK Big Four banks. The total UK PPI mis selling bill is now at £26 billion and possibly counting, according to Standard & Poor’s.
Meanwhile, HSBC is likely to move its headquarters back to Hong Kong should it decide to leave the United Kingdom. It would also need a skilled regulator that would welcome the banking giant, a stable business environment and a location for hiring bankers and getting clients.