America's Top 20 Bank Holding Companies

HSBC North America Holdings Inc.

Ranked ninth on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council's (FFIEC) list of the top fifty banks, HSBC North America Holdings Inc. has assets valued at $345,971,649.

HSBC (Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation) has been around since its first branches opened in Hong Kong and Shanghai in 1865. Originally the bank was founded by Sir Thomas Sutherland while Hong Kong was under British control. In 1980 HSBC acquired part ownership of Buffalo, New York based Marine Midland Bank. It took over full ownership in 1987 and continued to use the original name until 1998 when the name changed to HSBC Bank USA in order to show its relationship with the other HSBC banks around the world.

Throughout the 1990s Marine Midland acquired several financial operations and banks including Spectrum Home Mortgage, United Northern Federal Savings Bank, part of the Hang Seng Bank, East River Savings, JP Morgan's US dollar clearing house, First Federal Savings and Loan, First Commercial Bank and Republic National Bank. It was after the last take over in 1999 that the US headquarters moved from Buffalo, New York to New York City.

In 2002 HSBC USA purchased part of Arthur Andersen's tax service as a part of the company's new Wealth and Tax Advisory Services. In November of that year the company spent $15.5 billion dollars to acquire sub-prime mortgage lender, and credit card issuer, Household Finance Corporation (HFC). Taking the name HSBC Finance for this division, the company was the second largest lender of sub-prime mortgages in the United States. After the housing bubble burst, the division was shut down in March of 2009. The credit card division continued to operate but 6000 jobs were lost.

In the second half of 2011 HSBC Holding Plc. made a decision to sell nearly 200 branches to First Niagara Financial Group Inc. in order to better serve their customers worldwide. Also that year, HSBC sold their credit card division to Capital One Financial Corporation. They also seek to find a buyer for their insurance business as well.

As an American subsidiary of HSBC, the US headquarters are located in New York City with a second head office in McLean, Virginia. The main headquarters for HSBC are in London while the CEO office is in Hong Kong.

In the United States, the bank operates out of New York which is the financial center of North America. HSBC, as a whole, operates in each of the major financial markets across the world. This means that they are easily able to have access to market developments, find investors, keep a close eye on all of their competition and easily find buyers as they attempt to divest their assets.