HSBC lures US$9.3b in private banking inflows in Asia

HONG KONG (BLOOMBERG) – HSBC Holdings attracted US$9.3 billion (S$12.6 billion) in net new money for its private banking business in Asia during the first half, with client assets rising 25 per cent from a year ago.

Its Asia wealth balances – which include its Premier & Jade deposits and global private banking client assets – reached a record of about US$810 billion, accounting for nearly half of the total globally, it said in a statement.

The London-based bank is pinning its future on Asia, and has outlined ambitious plans to expand in wealth management, particularly in China. It is shifting billions of dollars to Asia and plans to hire more than 5,000 new wealth planners to grow its business over the next three to five years.

The bank continued to add Asian wealth front-line staff in the first half, with around 600 full-time employees hired, it said in the statement. This included 350 personal wealth planners for HSBC Pinnacle, the bank’s mobile personal wealth planning service in mainland China.

HSBC joins rivals, including Credit Suisse Group, Citigroup and Nomura Holdings, in a battle to manage growing wealth in the region. Citigroup attracted close to US$15 billion in net new money across its Asia-Pacific wealth management business in the first six months of 2021. HSBC’s Asia wealth revenue for the first half rose 26 per cent from the previous year.

Asia-Pacific has 831 billionaires, more than any other region, according to a report by UBS Group AG and PricewaterhouseCoopers last year. Banks have been beefing up wealth management in Asia to boost fee income amid rock bottom rates.

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