* HSBC releases H1 results at 0815 GMT on Monday
* Analysts forecast $14.6 bln pretax profit
* Costs, bad debts set to fall, offsetting drop in revenue
* Standard Chartered set for solid H1 profit on Tuesday
LONDON, Aug 5 HSBC's half-year profit
is set to rise 15 percent to more than $14 billion as a
three-year cost cutting plan starts to pay off and lower bad
debts compensate for a fall in revenue at Europe's biggest bank.
The results, due to be released on Monday, are likely to
lack the drama of British rivals last week - a rights issue at
Barclays, a new chief executive at RBS and the
prospect of a swift government sale of shares in Lloyds
Instead, HSBC will show how cutting costs and
restructuring is essential for an industry struggling to grow.
Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver said in May he will redouble
his efforts to drive down costs and could cut 14,000 more jobs
as part of his push to lift profitability and streamline the
Europe's biggest bank by market value is expected to report
pretax profit of $14.6 billion in the six months to the end of
June, up from $12.7 billion a year ago, according to the average
forecast of 14 analysts polled by the company.
Revenues are expected to fall 6 percent to $34.8 billion,
but that will be offset by a drop in losses from bad loans of 2
billion pounds, or 43 percent, to $2.7 billion. Operating costs
are forecast to fall 12 percent to $18.6 billion, driving the
rise in profit.
Gulliver, who is two and a half years into his
cost-reduction drive, had cut 46,000 jobs by May and sold or
closed 52 businesses. He is expected to continue to retreat from
countries where HSBC lacks scale.
The bank said in May that employee numbers could fall to
between 240,000 and 250,000 by 2016.
Gulliver is expected to remain upbeat on dividend prospects,
given the bank's strong capital position and earnings
A pledge in May to pay 40-60 percent of profit in dividends
lifted HSBC's shares, and investors are keen for further clues
on how generous the payout will be.
Standard Chartered , another London-based
bank with strong businesses in Asia, is expected to say on
Tuesday it remains on course for a full-year profit of about $8
billion, after recovering from a weak first quarter.
The bank last month brushed off fears that a slowdown in
China's economy would hit its growth and said annual profit
should grow at just short of its 10 percent annual target after
a decent second quarter.