We are not interested in ratings by A.M. Best. What we are interested in is Household Life, who owns it, and how many holding companies one must go through. Household Life is one of the last remaining reflections of Household International, owned by HSBC since 1993.
As if subprime losses are not enough, big banks including HSBC know they are pushing the limit of credibility on credit card balances. Writeoffs are up 48 percent. The largest credit-card banks each set aside $1 billion to $3.5 billion in the third quarter for losses on card loans as their profits plummeted. The biggest credit-card lenders include Discover Financial Services, Bank of America Corp., Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Capital One Financial Corp., American Express Co. and HSBC Holdings.