HSBC cuts 500 London jobs

Global bank HSBC has axed 500 jobs in London as the credit crunch continues.

The redundancies are part of a move to cut 1,100 jobs worldwide – about 4% of the group’s global banking and markets employees. The rest of the cuts will be made in Europe and the US.

“We’ve taken the action because of the current market conditions, the economic environment and our cautious outlook on 2009,” said HSBC spokesman Gareth Hewett.

The group’s investment banking division was hit by £2bn in losses from mortgage-backed investments affected by the credit crunch in the first six months of 2008.

Peter Wong, the banking group’s executive director for Hong Kong and China, has been unable to rule out further layoffs.

“The financial environment is difficult now. It’s nothing extraordinary that some staff have to leave our operations,” Wong told broadcaster Cable TV. “I think this kind of action will continue to come in the financial sector.”

On Thursday, mortgage bank Bradford & Bingley announced that it was axing 370 jobs to save money.

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