Shares in HSBC have surged in early trading extending last week's gains, made after it was revealed the bank was considering relocating away from the UK.
HSBC shares opened three per cent higher in London today following reports over the weekend that Britain's largest bank could spin off its UK business into a separate division and move its main operations to Asia.
The bank's shares closed last week almost five per cent higher on the previous week after chairman Douglas Flint said regulatory pressures had spurred the board to consider moving its headquarters.
"It is essential that we position HSBC in the best way to support the markets and customer bases critical to our future success," he told shareholders at its annual general meeting (AGM) on Friday.
"In this regard, we also have to take fully into account the repositioning of our industry being driven by the regulatory and structural reforms which have been put in place post crisis... We are beginning to see the final shape of regulation and of structural reform, including the requirement to ring fence in the UK.
Meanwhile HSBC's Hong Kong-listed shares climbed as much as six per cent higher, ending Monday's session up 3.6 per cent.
It's understood the bank has already had conversations with investors in Hong Kong who have been "much more welcoming" than shareholders in London, fueling speculation it could be eyeing the finance centre as a new HQ.
HSBC declined to comment on reports it is considering selling off its UK retail banking business.
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