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by Staff Writers
London (AFP) May 15, 2013
Asia-focused bank HSBC announced Wednesday that it will make another $2-3 billion (1.5-2.3 billion euros) of new cost savings, as the group seeks to boost profitability.
The lender said in a statement that it will seek the additional sustainable savings between 2014 and 2016.
Questioned about the impact on jobs, chief executive Stuart Gulliver told journalists that the bank would employ between 240,000 and 250,000 staff worldwide by 2016. That compares with the current level of 254,000.
HSBC had already revealed last week that it had slashed $4.0 billion from its annual costs, axing about 46,000 jobs since 2011 under its previous three-year restructuring plan.
"We have transformed HSBC in the first phase of the execution of our strategy," Gulliver in Wednesday's statement.
"We have announced the closure or disposal of 52 non-strategic or underperforming businesses, achieved $4.0 billion of annualised sustainable cost savings and generated double-digit loan growth in 15 priority markets.
"HSBC is now simpler, easier to manage and ready to take advantage of growth opportunities."
HSBC had announced last week that first-quarter net profits more than doubled to $6.35 billion, aided by sliding bad debts, deep cost cutting and a solid performance in Britain and Hong Kong.
Last year, however, HSBC had posted a 16.5-percent slump in net profits as it was hit by US money-laundering fines, mis-selling scandals, rising taxation and a vast accounting charge.
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