Daily Mail

Heat on HSBC boss for living in New York

- By Lucy White

HSBC’S chairman is under fire for choosing the US as his base, as the bank pushes ahead with a make-or-break shake-up.

Mark Tucker, 64, has been criticised for orchestrat­ing HSBC’s turnaround from his home in New York – despite the bank being based in the UK and making most of its money in Asia.

Analysts and MPs raised concerns that Tucker, a former profession­al football player for wolverhamp­ton wanderers, risked losing touch with most shareholde­rs and customers as the bank faces a crucial turning point in its history.

The lender is facing a campaign from its largest shareholde­r, Beijing-backed insurer Ping An, to break it up into its Asian and western divisions.

And investors, left disgruntle­d by years of lacklustre performanc­e, are closely watching for signs of improvemen­t at the bank after Tucker promised a radical shakeup. But eyebrows have been raised over the fact that Tucker, who lived in Hong Kong during his former role as head of Asian life insurer AIA, is based in neither London nor Hong Kong.

Tory MP Bob Seely, who sits on the Foreign Affairs Committee, said: ‘I wonder how feasible it is long-term having your chief executive living in another time zone, and away from most of his colleagues and customers? New York is not Hong Kong and it is not London. If he doesn’t want to stay in the UK, he’s not the only banker who can do the job of heading a UK bank.’

Referencin­g the Conservati­ve Party’s decision to suspend MP Matt Hancock for appearing on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me out of Here, Seely added: ‘If Matt Hancock will struggle to serve his constituen­cy from the jungle, I dare say Mr Tucker might have issues running a business from another continent.’

HSBC’s top brass are split between London and Hong Kong – and while the lender does have a presence in the US, it has sold its mass market US retail banking business.

It is understood that Tucker began spending more time in the US during Covid, before moving there permanentl­y with his wife Janet, with whom he has two children.

A former adviser told the Sunday Times that Tucker thought the UK was ‘a smallminde­d country and wanted the f*** out’.

Seely said: ‘I couldn’t think why [Tucker] thinks London is parochial compared to New York. The financial sector in New York is dominated by the US market whereas London has an incredibly global footprint.’

An HSBC spokesman said: ‘There is no stipulatio­n in Tucker’s contract about where he has to live.’

‘Away from most of his colleagues’

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