HSBC to prune number of branches in India

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HSBCIn order to give a thrust to retail and wealth management business to the online channel, Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) is contemplating to shut 24 of its 50 branches in India and restrict its presence to 14 cities in the country.

The London-based lender stated that the decision has been taken after a strategic review of retail and wealth management business in India, adding, it is laying emphasis on more digital transactions.

The move is being seen as a cost cutting measure globally. Earlier, the bank had announced that it will close down its private banking business in India, amid reports of an investigation by India’s tax department against individuals possessing unaccounted foreign currency accounts in the bank’s Swiss branch.

According to reports, one branch will be closed in Chennai, Guwahati, Indore, Jodhpur, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Mumbai, Mysore, Nagpur, Nasik, Patna, Pune, Raipur, Surat, Thiruvananthapuram, Vadodara and Vishakhapatnam, along with two branches in New Delhi and five in Kolkata.

HSBC employs over 33,000 people in India, including those in its outsourcing centre. About 1% of the employees are going to be hit due to this move, an HSBC spokesperson stated.

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