THE SUNDAY TIMES (UK): HSBC prepares to make British history with profits above €14bn: “…HSBC will still regain the crown of Europe’s most profitable company, a position it lost this month after Shell, the Anglo-Dutch oil and gas giant, reported profits of £9.4 billion” (ShellNews.net) 27 Feb 05
By John Waples
February 27, 2005
HSBC could become the first British company to make profits of more than £10 billion (€14.5 billion) when it releases its results tomorrow.
City analysts are forecasting that Sir John Bond, the bank’s chairman, will announce a record profit nudging £10 billion and some believe it could be even more.
If not, HSBC will still regain the crown of Europe’s most profitable company, a position it lost this month after Shell, the Anglo-Dutch oil and gas giant, reported profits of £9.4 billion.
Such is the international scale of HSBC that Britain now accounts for only 20% of its earnings. For the year just ended, HSBC will have its first full year of profit contribution from its acquisition of America’s Household International. Its profits will now be split equally between America, Asia-Pacific and Europe.
The only British company that could eclipse HSBC’s profits is Vodafone, which is due to report in May. But based on a recent briefing on new accounting standards given by Ken Hydon, Vodafone’s finance director, it is unlikely to achieve it this time. Analysts said under the new international accounting standards, it is on course to make pre-tax profits of about £9 billion. However, it will actually report a loss of almost £5 billion, because of the impact of goodwill amortisation.