HSBC, the UK’s largest bank, has announced that it may axe up to 30,000 employees. The move comes despite announcing pre-tax profits of £7bn for the first half of the year, a three per cent increase on 2010.
However, most of the losses are expected to fall outside the UK, part of a reduction in the bank’s global workforce, which currently totals around 300,000.
Earlier this year, HSBC announced it was to cull 7.000 jobs, a move in which 500 jobs were expected to be shed in the UK as the bank looked to reduce its operational costs.
The new cuts will take place over three years, with the bank withdrawing from operations in around 20 countries.
HSBC's chief executive, Stuart Gulliver, had already announced the closure of 195 branches in the US, yet he insisted more cuts were required to make up for the poor performance of the bank’s investment arm.
The news follows a similar announcement from Credit Suisse as the sector looks to restructure following Europe’s poor economic performance in recent years.
The rise in half-year profits comes on the back of the bank’s strong showing in Asia and Latin America.