Standard Chartered shares slump after profit warning

5th December 2013, Comments 0 comments

Shares in banking giant Standard Chartered tumbled in Hong Kong on Thursday after warned that operating profit could fall at least 10 percent this year.

The Asia-focused lender said it had been adversely affected by weakness in its South Korean business, which had tempered improvement elsewhere.

Because of this, it said operating profit in the consumer banking arm would be down by "a double digit rate" from last year's US$1.75 billion. It also said wholesale banking profit would be flat.

The news sent the bank's shares tumbling six percent in early trade before recovering slightly to end the morning session 4.38 percent lower.

"Difficult market conditions that began in August have continued in the second half and are likely to remain through to the year end. This has had a significant impact on business performance in the second half," a statement published on the company's website said Wednesday.

"Income for the full year is expected to be broadly flat on 2012," the bank said.

The bank last month lowered its annual revenue growth target to a range of seven to nine percent for the next "couple of years", from an initial forecast of at least 10 percent.

Good performances in Africa and India had been offset by weak performances particularly in South Korea, where the bank has been hit a government program that lets people with debt problems restructure their loans.

Excluding South Korea Korea, the group's consumer banking operating profit is expected to be up by a "high single digit percentage", it said.

"We are responding to near term challenges to ensure we strike the right balance between growth and returns," group chief executive Peter Sands said in the statement, adding that it was "a challenging year".

-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this story --


© 2013 AFP

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