Date
19 November 2017
HSBC chief executive Stuart Gulliver says the lender will ramp up investment in countries that bridge capital flows. Photo: HKEJ
HSBC chief executive Stuart Gulliver says the lender will ramp up investment in countries that bridge capital flows. Photo: HKEJ

HSBC lifts China growth forecast ever so slightly

HSBC Holdings Plc. (00005.HK) has increased its forecast for China’s gross domestic product growth to 7.5 percent from a 7.4 percent estimate in March, the bank said in a regulatory filing Monday.

Also, it expects Hong Kong to benefit from export growth in the six months to December.

It said the economic outlook for Britain calls for a firm recovery and British interest rates could start to rise in the fourth quarter.

In the United States, interest rates could go up in the first half next year given the positive implication of commercial surplus on revenue, HSBC said.

However, growth in Latin America will remain muted. The Middle East should perform well, albeit overshadowed by regional uncertainty, it said.

HSBC is targeting renminbi services as an investment priority in the next three years, hoping to capitalize on China’s increased efforts to open its capital account and liberalize its currency.

Other opportunities include global trade and receivable finance, payments and cash management, and foreign exchange.

“Our investment in these products is supported by investment in countries that bridge trade and capital flows, such as Germany, the United States and mainland China, and large city clusters which contain deep international revenue pools,” chief executive Stuart Gulliver said.

The lender said profit before tax fell 12 percent to US$12.34 billion in the first half while net profit was down 5 percent to US$9.46 billion.

Profit from the Asian market dropped as did its contribution to the bottom line. Profit from global banking and markets, the largest contributor to the bottom line, fell but earnings from commercial lending, the second biggest profit center, rose during the period.

Net interest income was down 2.32 percent to US$17.41 billion but loan impairment charges improved to US$1.84 billion from US$3.12 billion, the filing said.

– Contact the reporter at [email protected]

RA

Ayishah Ma is a financial reporter on Greater China issues.

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