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The Wall Street Journal: HSBC to end its U.S. retail operations

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HSBC Holdings PLC will exit from its U.S. retail and small-business banking operations as the bank shifts its focus to wealth management and international banking, especially in Asia.

The banking giant said late Thursday that it will exit 90 of its 148 branches in the U.S. through a series of transactions. HSBC
HSBC,
+0.06%

has entered into agreements to sell parts of its business to Citizens Financial Group Inc.’s 
CFG,
+1.47%

 Citizens Bank and Cathay General Bancorp’s 
CATY,
+1.64%

 Cathay Bank. It also plans to wind down around 35 to 40 branches.

HSBC will retain around two dozen locations in some of its existing markets and convert the sites into so-called international wealth centers, it said. That would help the bank focus on the “banking and wealth management needs of globally-connected affluent and high net worth clients,” it added.

As such, the bank will no longer service banking customers with balances below $75,000. It will also cut ties with all of its retail business customers, which includes small businesses, it said.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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