- HBSC said CEO John Flint had stepped down as Chief Executive and detailed plans to launch a $1bn stock buyback programme after reporting that half-yearly profits rose 15.8%. The bank warned, however, that falling interest rates in the US and geopolitical uncertainty would hurt growth.

Flint would immediately cease his day-to-day responsibilities at HSBC, but help with the transition as Noel Quinn takes over as interim chief executive.

For the six months through June, reported profit before tax was up 15.8% to $12.4bn as revenue rose 7.6%.

The bank generated earnings per share of $0.42, return on average tangible equity (annualised) (RoTE) was up 150 basis points to 11.2%.

The common equity tier 1 ratio was up 30 points from 31 December 2018 to 14.3%.

The company declared a dividend of 31 cents a share, unchanged from last year.

Looking ahead, the company warned that its outlook had unchanged and no longer expected to achieve its 6% RoTE target in the US by 2020 as interest rates in the US dollar bloc were are now expected to fall rather than rise, and geopolitical issues could impact a significant number of its major markets.

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