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HSBC's Asia Wealth Arm To Boost Headcount, Singles Out Singapore - Report

Tom Burroughes

31 May 2019

The Asia retail wealth management arm of will take on another 300 staff by the end of this year, increasing a focus on Singapore, an executive reportedly said.

The Hong Kong/London-listed bank's retail banking and wealth management division serves clients with less than $5 million of investable assets, while those above that threshold are served by the bank's private banking unit.

Headcount in Singapore will rise by 50 and HSBC will roll out new digital offerings this year, Kevin Martin, Asia-Pacific head of retail banking and wealth management, told Reuters.

WealthBriefing has contacted HSBC for comment and may update in due course.

The report said that the bank did not provide figures on its wealth management headcount in Singapore at present, but noted that the bank's business of offering advice and investment products to affluent clients in the city-state is smaller compared with its presence in China and Hong Kong.

"It's fair to say that our entire business in Singapore underperformed, and we haven't hidden from that fact," Martin was quoted by Reuters as saying, referring to the retail banking and wealth arms.

(Editor's note: While this publication deals mainly with the private banking side of HSBC, a rise in headcount, if it can be achieved, for the business serving HNW and mass affluent clients up to the $5 million AuM watermark is clearly positive news overall. As ever, the difficulty for firms wanting to build headcount is finding talent and holding on to it in what is a fiercely competitive market.)