HSBC profits halved as virus batters global economy

Hong Kong (AFP) – HSBC on Tuesday said first quarter pre-tax profits almost halved as the banking giant is battered by the global coronavirus pandemic while it embarks on a major restructuring.The lender reported pre-tax profits of $3.2 billion, down 48 percent from the same period in 2019, citing credit losses from clients hit by the economic slowdown as a major cause. “The economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on our customers has been the main driver of the change in our financial performance since the turn of the year,” newly confirmed CEO Noel Quinn said in a statement. The Asia-focuse…

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