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Defence Secretary announces massive £2.5bn investment in UK nuclear submarines READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/defence-secretary-announces-massive-25bn-investment-in-uk-nuclear-submarines
Struggling bank the Co-op will shut 50 bank branches to help cover a £1.5 billion capital black hole. Reports suggest 10 per cent of its overall workforce, could be axed with job cuts likely to come from its banking division as part of a radical overhaul of its whole business. The Co-op made no comment on the reports. In May, the bank had its credit rating downgraded to ‘junk’ status by credit ratings agency Moody’s and was forced to present a capital plan to the Bank of England after Moody’s suggested the bank may need funding help from other parts of the business. The Capital Action Plan included details of plans to sell its life and savings division to Royal London and the sale of its general insurance division. Mismanagement and the decision to buy Britannia Building Society was blamed for the problems that left the bank with a £1.5 billion hole in its balance sheet. The Bank of England is expected to approve the changes which will see the mutually-owned organisation give up ownership of the Co-op Bank. The final number of jobs to go was still being decided this weekend, according to Sky News, but it is expected to be well over 1,000 out of a total workforce of about 9,000 that work for the Co-op’s banking division, primarily in its corporate lending business as it refocuses lending to small business customers. The new deal would need the approval of 80 per cent of the shareholders and a vote is expected to take place before the end of the year. The Co-op Bank needs to attract new investment and ordinary investors are likely to be given a combination of bonds and income guarantees to secure future support.The Bank is being forced to list on the stock exchange for the first time and the two biggest institutional bondholders, two US hedge funds, are likely to emerge as the biggest shareholders when the bank’s shares appear on the stock exchange for the first time next year. The fact that the mutual will no longer be the majority owner of the Co-op Bank is likely to upset many of the Bank’s customers. This has resulted in the institutional bondholders being quick to praise the Co-op’s ethical stance and aims. One of the biggest corporate shareholders, LT2 said in a statement last week: "The Co-operative Bank is unique for its ethics, mission and heritage which are an essential component of the Bank’s differentiated approach. "It is important to us that the Bank will maintain its unique characteristics and ethos. "The Co-operative Group Ltd. will remain the Bank’s largest shareholder by far and the Bank will benefit by this connection to the Co-operative movement." Link: http://www.myfinances.co.uk/savings/2013/11/04/co-op-to-cut-10-of-banking-staff
HSBC has reported a £13.7bn pre-tax profit for 2012 as the bank was hit by further misselling provisions of £1.5bn and its £1.2bn fine from US regulators last year The bank saw profits fall 5.5 per cent last year, down from £14.4bn in 2011. The bank has set aside an extra £1.5bn in 2012 to cover compensation payments for the misselling of financial products, including £1.1bn to cover costs related to the misselling of payment protection insurance and £397m to cover costs relating to the misselling of interest-rate swaps. In total, HSBC has set aside £1.6bn to settle PPI-related claims. HSBC also had to pay a £1.2bn fine from US regulators last year to settle a money-laundering inquiry. Total group revenue fell 5.6 per cent from £72.8bn to £68.3bn. The group’s core tier 1 capital ratio increased from 10.1 per cent in 2011 to 12.3 per cent in 2012. HSBC’s European division made a £2.3bn loss in 2012, due to a £2.7bn write down in its own debt. The previous year it made a £3bn profit. In the UK, the bank lent £16.4bn to mortgage customers in 2012, up 24 per cent on the £13.2bn lent in 2011 and £4bn more than its original commitment of £15bn of new mortgage lending in 2012. The bank approved £19bn in total in 2012. The bank had a 12 per cent share of the UK mortgage market as at the end of 2012, up from 10 per cent a year earlier. Group chief executive Stuart Gulliver says: “Although reported pre-tax profit fell by 6 per cent to US$20.6bn [£13.7bn] in 2012, underlying profit, which includes the impact of fines and penalties and UK customer redress provisions totalling US$4.3bn, grew by 18 per cent. This was primarily due to revenue growth, notably in global banking and markets and commercial banking, and lower loan impairment charges in North America. We regard this as a good performance.” Link: http://www.mortgagestrategy.co.uk/latest-news/hsbc-posts-137bn-profit-but-sets-aside-extra-15bn-for-misselling/1067038.article
HSBC is expected to pay more than $1.5bn (£933m) in fines to US authorities within weeks to settle money-laundering investigations into its business. HSBC is expected to pay more than $1.5bn (£933m) in fines to US authorities within weeks to settle money-laundering investigations into its business. The bank could be fined the sum as early as next week as part of a settlement with federal prosecutors, according to reports yesterday. HSBC has put aside $1.5bn to meet the cost of the fines, but admitted at its latest results presentation that the eventual penalty could be “significantly higher” and that it could face criminal charges. Yesterday’s reports put the likely size of the fine at $1.8bn. HSBC declined to comment. The fines relate to an investigation of HSBC’s US and Mexican operations that found the bank had allegedly ignored warnings that billions of dollars of funds being moved between the two subsidiaries were linked to drug trafficking. A Senate committee described the bank as “pervasively polluted for a long time”. It highlighted what it said were lax controls and inadequate compliance by staff as the bank was accused of handling transactions involving terrorists, drug lords and rogue regimes. Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9728409/HSBC-set-to-pay-more-than-1.5bn-to-settle-money-laundering-probe.html