Union accuses HSBC of 'creative accounting' with job losses

Union Unite has said it is furious that HSBC is misleading staff and customers about the extent of the damage caused by job cuts.

Union Unitehas said it is furious that HSBC is misleading staff and customers about the extent of the damage caused by job cuts. It has accused the bank of using clever accounting to mislead the public.

The Union claims HSBC's announcement that it is cutting 1,228 jobs, including 126 IT roles, misrepresented the actual number being laid off.Unite described the figure issued by HSBC as "creative accountancy" and said the real figure is 2,900.

But HSBC said 2900 people will not lose their jobs. It added it has been very open in its language that the announcement today is that 1,200 staff face potential redundancy following an operational review of its business.

"Over the course of the year-long review, a number of individuals will retire or leave the organisation through personal choice, new roles will be created and vacancies which are currently available may or may not be filled.We feel that it is always best to focus on the number of our colleagues who may be at risk of losing their jobs -this is what the 1,200 refers to -and this is the right and proper thing to do."

Derek Simpson, Unite Joint General Secretary, said: "As if it were not bad enough for staff of HSBC to hear from the media that their jobs are at risk, we now have a situation where the company is failing to come clean with the true extent of these cuts."

"This is creative accountancy with peoples' jobs. Unite is furious that HSBC is misleading its staff and customers about the full extent of the devastation the announcement this morning will cause. HSBC is using clever accounting to mislead the public and staff about the number of jobs they intend to cut from the UK. Their approach today is totally disgraceful."

A total of 126 IT staff have received redundancy notification today as a result of a reorganisation, consolidation of tasks and reduction in manual tasks, said HSBC.The roles are spread fairly evening across in London, Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds, Winkfield, Stirling, Brighton and Worthing.

Banks in general are making redundancies as business volumes fall.

HSBC cut 1,100 jobs in its investment banking division in September, including 500 front- and back-office jobs in London.

Credit Suisse, which made a loss in the third quarter of this year of £704m, has announced 650 job cuts including IT support functions.

Citigroup plans to cut its global workforce by 52,000 jobs across all businesses and geographies in the near future. Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit revealed last month that the bank would cut 20% of its employees at the group.

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is expected to make thousands of job cuts. According to various reports last month, up to 3,000 jobs will be cut in the bank's global banking and markets divisions.

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