HSBC saw its pre-tax profit plummet by 65% in the first of the year as the UK’s largest bank was forced to hike funds to cover bad loans due to the coronavirus.The lender reported profits of $4.3bn (£3.2bn) in the half year to 30 June, down from $12.4bn (£9.5bn) for the same period in 2019.HSBC’s results reflected the trend of lenders globally increasing their financial buffers to absorb loan losses as companies reel from the impact of the COVID-19 crisis.In response to the coronavirus pandemic the bank’s provision for bad debts in the first-half soared to $6.9bn (£5.3bn), compared to $1bn (£760m) for the same period a year earlier.It had set aside $3bn (£2.3bn) to cover loan losses in the first quarter. Advertisement HSBC said its total provisions against loan losses could be between $8bn (£6.1bn) and $13bn (£10bn) in 2020 – up from its April forecast due to the deteriorating global economic outlook and worse-than-expected actual losses in the second quarter.The bank has suffered a turbulent year on the markets with the London listed shares falling more than 40% from 595p to 342p as of 30 June. More from Covid-19 Coronavirus: Wales pubs, cafes and restaurants reopen for indoor… Read full this story
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