HSBC announces 8000 UK job cuts and retail rebrand

Stuart Gulliver
Stuart Gulliver

HSBC is to shed 8,000 of its UK staff as part of global cost-cutting measures that will also see it cut up to 25,000 jobs worldwide.

Europe’s biggest bank, which currently has 48,000 UK workers, is also considering relocating its global headquarters away from the UK and rebranding its British retail operations.

In a statement, HSBC chief executive Stuart Gulliver said jobs would go by “natural attrition”, with staff turnover currently standing at about 3,000 annually.

The bank also said that cuts will affect both its retail and investment banking operations and a total of 10 per cent of its 266,000 global workforce could go.

Meanwhile, HSBC also plans to change the name of its ring-fenced UK retail banking arm, meaning the HSBC brand and logo disappearing from Britain’s high streets.

The bank plans to make the change to its UK branch network once it has been legally split from its global operations in line with new government rules to formally separate the two businesses.

Speaking at an investor day, Mr Gulliver said: “We will operate with a different brand name, we haven’t decided what it is, we’re going to consult with customers and staff.”

Reports are already suggesting that options could include reviving the Midland Bank brand, which HSBC bought in 1992, or adopting the name of its UK online bank, First Direct.

Mr Gulliver said he said wanted to ensure that customers made a distinction between HSBC’s investment and retail banking operations.

Meanwhile, Dominic Hook, national officer with the union Unite, called on HSBC to achieve any job cuts through voluntary means and natural attrition.

He said the bank had not had a voluntary redundancy scheme in the past.

“It’s really sad that all our members, all the hard work they’ve done to try to get the bank back working properly after all the scandals of the last few years, are going to be paying with their jobs,” he said.

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