HSBC posts £7bn profit

HSBC has reported a £7bn pre-tax profit for the first six months of the year.

The figure was around double the amount for the same period last year.

The bank was profitable in every region, except for North America.

HSBC shareholders will receive a second dividend this year, the lender said.

Margaret Leung, Vice-Chairman and chief executive said: "Competition intensified in the first half of 2010 as banks sought to capitalise on increased trade flows and an upswing in investment sentiment.

"We achieved growth in our customer base and income in key segments and we further aligned our operations to support the continued expansion of core revenue drivers."