HSBC chairman will not be standing down

1 June 2010

Stephen Green, chairman of HSBC, has announced he expects to stay on in his current post for at least another year after recent media reports claimed he would be standing down in 2010.

Mr Green made the statement at the bank’s annual general meeting (AGM) of shareholders.

Numerous reports in the press claimed that the post holder would be relinquishing his role as chairman this year and handing over responsibility to non-executive director John Thornton, chairman of HSBC’s unit in North America.

However, the chairman quashed the rumours during the meeting saying: “To be clear, I look forward to chairing the next AGM in 2011.”

He stated: “When I have something to say, I’ll say it.”

Mr Green added that he would not be following the majority of HSBC’s senior management team and relocating to Hong Kong.

The chairman’s role “must be essentially full-time” and based in the UK while the chief executive officer needs to be based in Asia, he explained.

Meanwhile, Mr Thornton, who is also chairman of HSBC’s remuneration committee, is to lead an investigation into the bank’s payment procedures.

The move follows criticism from some shareholders over the size of pay packets handed to top executives including HSBC CEO Michael Geoghegan.

By Jim Ottewill

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