HSBC’s commercial banking division grew its pre-tax profits 15% during 2017, to $6.7bn (£4.8bn, €5.42bn).
The biggest boost to revenues for the division came from global liquidity and cash operations, up 13% to $4.7bn.
Income for credit and lending operations totalled $5bn, up $52m (1%). Global trade and receivables finance business, while down $21m (-1%), stabilised at $1.8bn, after what the bank termed a “challenging” 2016. Hong Kong and the UK were singled out as growing markets in trade and receivables finance respectively.
During Q4, net operating income for commercial banking in Europe fell 7% to $955m, while net profit slumped 67% to $67m. In the UK, net operating income was 15% lower at $709m, with net profits more than halving to $200m (-106%).
Across the wider HSBC group, revenues grew 7.2% to $51.4bn, while pre-tax profits jumped 140% to $17bn. Loan impairments were almost halved, totalling $1.7bn (-92%).
The results were the last to be published under Stuart Gulliver, who is to pass the title of group chief executive to John Flint.
Gulliver said: “These good results demonstrate the strength and potential of HSBC. All our global businesses grew adjusted profits and we concluded the transformation programme that we started in 2015.
“HSBC is simpler, stronger, and more secure than it was in 2011. It has been my great privilege to lead HSBC for the last seven years, and in handing over to John I am confident the organisation is in great hands.”
Flint said: “These results and the achievements of the last couple of years give us a great platform to build on. I am working with the management team and the board to evolve our strategy and execute it at pace, and I will update shareholders on this work by our half year results.
“The fundamentals of HSBC will remain the same as they always have: strong funding and liquidity, strong capital, and a conservative approach to credit.”