02/23/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/22/2021 22:10
'In 2020, our people delivered an exceptional level of support for our customers in very tough circumstances, while our strong balance sheet and liquidity gave reassurance to those who rely on us. We achieved this while delivering a solid financial performance in the context of the pandemic - particularly in Asia - and laying firm foundations for our future growth. I am proud of everything our people achieved and grateful for the loyalty of our customers during a very turbulent year.
The growth plans we are announcing today aim to establish HSBC as a dynamic, efficient and agile global bank with a digital-first mindset, capable of providing a world-leading service to our customers and strong returns for our investors. We intend to deliver them at pace.'
We recognise a number of fundamental changes, including the prospect of prolonged low interest rates, the significant increase in digital engagement from customers and the enhanced focus on the environment, and we have aligned our strategy accordingly.
We intend to increase our focus on areas where we are strongest, increase and accelerate our investments, and continue to progress with the transformation of our underperforming businesses. As part of our climate ambitions, we have also set out our plans to capture the opportunities presented by the transition to a low-carbon economy.
We will continue to target an adjusted cost base of $31bn or less in 2022. This reflects a further reduction in our cost base, which has been broadly offset by the adverse impact of foreign currency translation due to the weakening US dollar towards the end of 2020. In addition, we will continue to target a gross risk-weighted assets ('RWA') reduction of over $100bn by the end of 2022. We no longer expect to reach our return on average tangible equity ('RoTE') target of between 10% and 12% in 2022, as originally planned and will now target a RoTE of greater than or equal to 10% in the medium term.
We intend to maintain a CET1 ratio above 14%, managing in the range of 14% to 14.5% in the medium term and managing this range down in the longer term. The Board has adopted a policy to provide sustainable dividends going forward. We intend to transition towards a target payout ratio of between 40% and 55% of reported earnings per ordinary share ('EPS') from 2022 onwards, with the flexibility to adjust EPS for non-cash significant items, such as goodwill or intangibles impairments.
We have had a good start to 2021, and we are cautiously optimistic for the year ahead.
UK - Heidi Ashley
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7992 2045
Hong Kong - Patrick Humphris
Telephone: +852 2822 2052
UK - Richard O'Connor
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7991 6590
Hong Kong - Mark Phin
Telephone: +852 2822 4908