NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of HSBC Holdings plc (HSBC) are down -0.46% to $51.41 in heavy trading volume this afternoon as the bank moves to reduce the number of countries its private bank serves by 50% after selling a portfolio of Swiss banking assets, the latest bank to narrow its wealth management focus in a bid to improve profitability and cut compliance risk, Reuters reports.
Most of the reduction will be via a deal agreed to today to sell $12.5 billion of its Swiss private banking assets to Liechtenstein bank, LGT Group Foundation.
Those assets were held by clients in dozens of countries, including in central and eastern Europe, and some countries in west Europe, Africa and in Latin America that HSBC sees as not strategically important, Reuters said.
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