RPT-UPDATE 2-HSBC warns of growing risk aversion as profit drops

lunes 4 de agosto de 2014 07:24 GYT

* Heavy agenda of reforms risks overburdening staff, operations

* "Creeping concern" of zero tolerance for risk-taking -chairman

* H1 profits drop 12 pct after fall in revenues

* HSBC set to benefit from higher interest rates

* Shares up 2.5 pct (Repeats to additional subscribers)

By Steve Slater and Matt Scuffham

LONDON, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Europe's largest bank HSBC warned that regulators' zeal to punish wrongdoing was putting its staff off taking reasonable business risks, as it reported a 12 percent drop in first-half profit.

HSBC Chairman Douglas Flint on Monday called on international regulators to clarify what they expected of bank staff after recent record sanctions for misconduct, including a $9 billion U.S. fine against France's BNP Paribas, had left them fearful of retribution.

"There's a creeping concern that staff are clearly very focused on the penalties for getting things wrong and are building risk-aversion into the way they think," Flint told reporters on a conference call.   Continuación...