It was inevitable and we talked about it since 2002. HSBC bought predatory lender Household International in late 2002 and finalized the purchase in early 2003. Name liability and associating HSBC’s name and reputation with shady lender Household International was not wise. Ignoring the obvious, HSBC started to become associated with income tax lending, high interest rates, and second mortgages. Stephen Green and othes at the top fielded questions about ‘trailer park lending.’ But today I read the first article that associates the HSBC name and blame for the worldwide mortgage and monetary crisis. The article is here.
Finger pointing and guilt by association is one thing. Being named the Hong Kong Shanghai Bank Corp, based in London and loaning to Americans is quite another. Granted other lenders wee involved in the mortgage crisis on 2007 but HSBC is one of the largest banks in the world, with the strength to loan to Americans. If HSBC had changed the name of Household’s HFC and Beneficial Finance it might have helped. One considers that HSBC changed the name of Household’s high interest tax loan operation, but they changed it from Household Taxmasters to HSBC Taxmasters. Talk about asking for a black eye!
Any bank in the world can buy a predatory lender. No bank – and I mean NO BANK – can afford to be associated with responsibility for the loss of billions around the world.