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  1. Wealth
July 6, 2009

Bloomberg: HSBC asked clients to reveal names

By Spear's

July 3 (Bloomberg) — HSBC Holdings Plc’s Swiss private bank last September asked clients and independent money managers to surrender their right to banking secrecy protection in order to keep securities invested in 28 countries.

July 3 (Bloomberg) — HSBC Holdings Plc’s Swiss private bank last September asked clients and independent money managers to surrender their right to banking secrecy protection in order to keep securities invested in 28 countries.

In countries where rules demand investor disclosure, HSBC asked for permission to hand over the names of clients that want to keep their investments, the Geneva-based bank said in a letter that it e-mailed to Bloomberg News today. Those countries include Brazil, China, India and Greece.

Credit Suisse Group AG is also asking clients holding French securities to let it release their details to France’s financial regulator. While both banks are seeking to comply with securities regulations, the moves may increase investor concern after Swiss banking secrecy came under attack from the U.S. and Europe this year.

“It might be a way to undermine the secrecy system,” said Christian Stark, a banking analyst at Credit Agricole Cheuvreux in Zurich. “If Switzerland was suddenly inundated with insider trading requests, it would be obvious what’s behind it.”

To read the full story, visit bloomberg.com

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