Tuesday 17 March 2020 7:08 pm

Noel Quinn made HSBC chief executive on permanent basis

Banking giant HSBC has confirmed that interim chief executive Noel Quinn will take up the post permanently with immediate effect, bringing to an end a six-month external search.

In August last year chairman Mark Tucker ousted chief executive John Flint over an alleged argument about how fast the bank should have been hitting its targets.

Read more: HSBC interim chief executive’s pay set to rise to £1.3m

Quinn, a 27-year veteran of the bank, has been in the top seat ever since, but the appointment comes as a surprise after reports that Tucker had been seeking to hire from outside of the company.

In a statement, Tucker said: “Noel has proven to be the outstanding candidate to take on a role permanently that he has performed impressively on an interim basis since August 2019”.

Last month, the bank unveiled one of the most radical overhauls by a blue-chip lender in the past decade, with 35,000 jobs to go as the firm attempts to slash annual costs by $4.5bn and shed $100bn of assets by 2022.

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The bank will also implement a sweeping restructuring, cutting the number of regional executive roles from seven to four, as well as merging the “back and middle office” sections of its investment bank and commercial bank.

HSBC had come under criticism from some shareholders and analysts for making the announcement without clarity on who would lead the bank through the process.

Read more: HSBC courts the globally mobile with new $1.4 trillion wealth business

Last week it was announced that Quinn would receive a 2.5 per cent pay rise, bringing his total salary to £1.3m.

Shares in the bank rose 6.5 per cent today.

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