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HSBC considers floating UK banking business: FT

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[December 09, 2013]  (Reuters)  HSBC Holdings Plc <HSBA.L> is considering the flotation of up to 30 percent of its British retail and commercial banking arm, the Financial Times reported, a move that would help it cope with planned new rules that demand that British banks ringfence their retail arms.

Citing three people familiar with the project, the FT said the plan was at an early stage but the matter had been discussed with investors and informally at board level.

The paper added that investors estimate such a business could float with a market capitalisation of about 20 billion pounds ($32.7 billion). (http://link.reuters.com/paj35v)

Representatives for HSBC could not be reached for comment late on Sunday.

The British government said in October that it would accelerate the process of splitting up any bank that tries to circumvent new rules designed to ringfence their retail operations from riskier investment banking activities.

(Reporting by Richa Naidu in Bangalore; editing by Edwina Gibbs)

[ 2013 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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