While the upturn in the West struggled to gain momentum during the first half of 2010, Asian economies remained at the forefront of the world's emerging markets-led recovery. The pick-up in world trade continued to improve, and as emerging nations increasingly trade with each other, Asia's role in keeping the global economy on track looks more important than ever.

Against these sound fundamentals, The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited delivered a strong and improved performance. Profits of HK$38,575 million were well ahead of the first half of 2009, increasing by 26.4 per cent. Profits outside Hong Kong contributed 45.5 per cent of the total, nearly double the level of four years ago. Growth was well spread across the region, driven by improving economic conditions, higher trade flows, increasing customer confidence, improved sales productivity and our relentless focus on developing the products and services that our customers need. 

We continue to explore both organic and inorganic opportunities for growth in Hong Kong and the region. Outside Hong Kong, our focus is on the six key regional markets of mainland China, India, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and Australia where we see the greatest opportunity to support the growing local and international needs of our customers.

Profits surge at HSBC as impairment provisions slashed

A very impressive set of results, spurring on the rest of the banking sector and markets in general today as well it seems, the key being a massive fall in Loan impairment charges.

HSBC Hldgs (LON:HSBA) has been my preferred banking pick for a while now.

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