LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s financial watchdog said it was working closely with HSBC and other agencies to make sure the bank was meeting conduct standards after allegations its Swiss unit helped hundreds of people to dodge tax.
In its first statement on the matter, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said on Monday the allegations had served to reinforce the importance of firms operating with the right culture across all of their operations.
“The FCA is working closely with the firm and other agencies which have an interest in this matter to ensure that any questions this may raise in relation to any current practices and culture of HSBC are addressed,” the FCA said.
HSBC referred on Monday to its 4-page statement published last week which said it was cooperating with relevant authorities.
Europe’s biggest bank apologised to customers and investors on Sunday for past practices at its Swiss private bank.
Jon Cunliffe, deputy governor at the Bank of England, HSBC’s other main regulator in Britain, said on Friday the BoE may look into the tax allegations. Britain’s Serious Fraud Office said on Thursday it was open to discussing the allegations with British tax authority HMRC.
Parliament’s Treasury Select Committee are also taking an interest and will grill HSBC Chairman Douglas Flint and CEO Stuart Gulliver on Feb 25.