More HSBC Cuts

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HSBC is cutting at least 20 jobs from its corporate finance division, less than two weeks after it let more than 100 people go from its New York bond group, its U.S. equities unit, and other offices around the world.

Financial News says the latest cuts are another sign HSBC is dropping back from former chief John Studzinski's goal of building a global investment banking business. Studzinski left the bank in May. Last year, HSBC's investment banking unit increased its staff by about 1,400 people, which in turn increased expenses and impacted pre-tax earnings. There has been some recovery recently.

HSBC is eliminating its general industrials and technology, media and telecom investment banking teams, Financial News says.

All of the cuts have raised concerns that bonuses at HSBC will be disappointing, which recruiters speculate could prompt a further exodus of what one calls "the remaining quality bankers."

"There is not an HSBC banker I have spoken to who is not hedging himself by lining up options for early 2007," the recruiter told Financial News.

However, some media reports indicate London-based HSBC sees growth in its retail operations and is adding branches in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

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