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Standard Chartered profits down 64% with revenue missing estimates

A woman walking past Standard Chartered Bank/AFP

A woman walking past Standard Chartered Bank/AFP

HONG KONG, China, Apr 26 – Standard Chartered said Tuesday first quarter profits slumped 64 percent year-on-year as revenue for the period also plunged, following a turbulent 2015 in which the troubled bank announced it would axe thousands of jobs.

The Asia-focused bank said profits for the first three months fell to $539 million from $1.49 billion in the same period last year.

Revenue also missed estimates at $3.35 billion  short of the $3.49 billion predicted by analysts polled by Bloomberg News and slumping 24 percent compared with the first quarter a year earlier.

Earnings from corporate clients fell 27 percent to $1.85 billion, while income from retail clients also saw a drop of almost 20 percent to $1.21 billion.

But in a statement filed to the Hong Kong stock exchange the bank remained upbeat despite the results.

“Although trading conditions in the first quarter remained challenging, we continue to make good progress on our strategic objectives,” group chief executive Bill Winters said.

Like many global banks, Standard Chartered is battling turmoil in global financial markets that has seen stocks and commodities plunge.

In February it said it had swung to a surprise $2.36 billion net loss in 2015 against a backdrop of global market volatility, restructuring costs and bad loans, adding that its 2016 performance would remain “subdued”.

It announced in November that it was refocusing on “affluent retail clients” rather than corporate and institutional banking businesses and would exit or restructure $100 billion of assets and axe 15,000 jobs.

The bank also said executive directors did not receive bonus payments for the year.

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