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HSBC says to cut headcount by more than 1,000

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

HSBC on Tuesday said it planned a net reduction of 1,149 British jobs under a shake-up of the global bank's division that deals with high-depositing investors.

"HSBC is today proposing changes within its UK business which will lead to a potential reduction of 1,149 roles," the British bank said in a statement.

"The changes reflect the changing nature of customer behaviour and regulation. A total of 3,166 employees will be impacted. However, the bank is creating 2,017 new roles and it is expected that the majority of these roles will be filled by displaced employees," it said.

The lender, which is Europe's biggest bank by market value, added: "Wealth remains a strategic business for HSBC.

"The proposed changes will ensure for the first time that all UK Premier customers who already hold over £50,000 ($76,000, 59,000 euros) of savings and investments with the bank, will have a relationship manager qualified to give financial advice as a single contact point for both their banking and wealth management needs."

Britain is tightening regulation surrounding financial advisors in the wake of the global economic crisis.

"Better serving our customers, particularly for their wealth management needs, is essential if we are to fulfil our aspiration of becoming the world's leading international bank," HSBC deputy chief executive Antonio Simoes said in Tuesday's statement.

"These proposals, together with the recent removal of all sales targets for our employees and the complete decoupling of incentives from those sales, mean our customers can expect us to fully focus on serving their needs and do the right thing.

"Evolving and improving our culture will take time but the changes announced today are another step in the right direction," he added.

HSBC employs 52,000 across Britain and a total of 261,000 worldwide. In March, HSBC announced that it had exceeded its target of saving up to $3.5 billion over two years -- after axing 30,000 jobs globally.

At the same time, it said that group net profit sank 16.5 percent to $14.03 billion in 2012, hit by US money-laundering fines, mis-selling scandals, rising tax costs and a huge accounting charge.

Founded in Hong Kong, HSBC currently sees Asia as its main market.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130423/hsbc-says-cut-headcount-more-1000