Europe’s largest lender, HSBC Holdings plc (00005.HK), is imposing a global freeze on hiring and pay this year, Reuters reported, citing two unnamed sources.
Meanwhile, HSBC’s board met last week to consider moving its headquarters to Hong Kong and to focus on the bank’s strategy.
A decision on domicile could come early this week, a senior employee at the bank told Reuters Wednesday.
An email was sent to staff on Friday detailing the latest cost-saving measures, the report said.
Like many other global banks, HSBC is in the midst of a cost-cutting drive to boost profitability and returns to shareholders.
It is pushing through with plans for annual cost savings of up to US$5 billion by 2017.
The bank said in June that it planned to slash nearly one in five jobs and shrink its investment bank by a third in response to sluggish economic growth and tighter global regulation of banks’ balance sheet risk.
“As flagged in our Investor Update, we have targeted significant cost reductions by the end of 2017,” a spokeswoman for HSBC said, confirming the content of the staff email.
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