HONG KONG/LONDON, April 28 (Reuters) - HSBC Holdings PLC’s first-quarter profit tumbled a worse-than-expected 48% after boosting provisions against bad loans as the coronavirus pandemic hits borrowers worldwide.
Europe’s biggest bank by assets said profit before tax came in at $3.21 billion for January-March, down from $6.21 billion a year ago and below an average analyst forecast of $3.67 billion compiled by the bank.
HSBC said last week it is pressing ahead with plans outlined in February to shift capital from underperforming businesses, reduce costs and strip out layers of management. But it has paused job cuts to avoid disruption and leaving staff unable to find work elsewhere.
Reporting by Sumeet Chatterjee and Lawrence White; Editing by Edwina Gibbs