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HSBC chief attacks bankers' bonuses

HSBC chairman Stephen Green has launched an attack on bankers' bonuses branding the sums they have been receiving “inflated”.

He said bankers would have to accept lower payouts in the future following the furore surrounding their remuneration packages.

Green, who is also chairman of the British Bankers' Association, said: "You’ve had bonuses paid off gross income, you've had bonuses paid off first-day [profits], you’ve had bonuses paid without any capital charge, and so you can see how that gives rise to the wrong and frankly inflated numbers [we’ve seen]."

He said the banking industry should feel "uncomfortable" and said the market must be shaken-up so that bankers have nothing to feel 'ashamed of".

HSBC's rival Barclays is expected to announce that most of its senior executives will not get their bonuses for at least three years, and the 100 London partners of Goldman Sachs have had their 2009 bonuses capped at £1m.

Chief executive John Varley has written to employees confirming his plans to defer bonuses for senior staff.

Green added: "As this newer environment beds down, I think you will see a market working in a way that we don't need to be ashamed about."