HSBC, headquartered in London is the world’s fifth largest bank by total assets and offers numerous financial services including money transfers. The HSBC name is derived from the initials of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation. HSBC continues to see both the United Kingdom and Hong Kong as home markets. HSBC has around 6,600 offices in 80 countries and territories across Africa, Asia, Oceania, Europe, North and South America, with approximately 60 million customers.
HSBC is organized into four principal business divisions: Commercial Banking, Global Private Banking and Retail Banking and Wealth Management. Investment banking falls into HSBC’s category of Global Banking and Markets.
Global Banking and Markets provides investment banking and finance for corporate and institutional clients, including corporate banking, investment banking, capital markets, trade services, payments and cash management, and leveraged acquisition finance. It provides services in equities, credit and rates, foreign exchange, money markets and securities services, as well as asset management services.
Global Banking and Markets has offices in more than 60 countries and territories worldwide, HSBCnet is the specific global service providing payments and foreign exchange.
Personal Exchange Services are available only to HSBC bank account members:
HSBC money transfers offers Expat banking accounts. Multicurrency accounts and wealth management services are specifically designed for expats, or customers who regularly make international payments.
HSBC Business and Corporate Services:
Dynamic sales and trading teams offer up-to-date market intelligence, advice and timely deals through trading day. HSBCnet integrates real-time foreign exchange pricing tools into secure transaction portal. With HSBCnet clients can:
HSBC offers modern tools- like a currency calculator, backed by more than 140 years of experience.
HSBC’s website epitomises information overload with a twist of under informing visitors. Seeking to make a currency exchange is neither easy to find, nor is the very odd ‘HSBC Spot FX ‘currency calculator. Mid-market rates are given with the note: ‘This currency calculator supplies indicative information only and the data should not be used as the basis for any transactions or treated as either a definitive currency price or investment advice.’ Their rate is nowhere near mid-market, and won’t be seen until the transfer process is activated, so account members can’t compare rates.
Services are impossible to access online without telephoning HSBC or visiting the bank as the single page HSBC devotes to foreign exchange services gives only a vague sense of what might be available once the visitor does contact the bank. Bank to bank service is much less convenient than companies specializing in foreign exchange.
TRUSTPILOT rated HSBC money transfers had a bad 0.6 with 267 reviews. Consistently customer service wait times provoked misery. In person at the bank, prospective account members waited a hour to be seen and then they waited weeks for their account information. Those telephoning waited on hold for typically 40 minutes and were dissatisfied with service afterwards. Online account members found seriously out-dated online and mobile features that didn’t work properly. After wasting time online, they wasted more time waiting on the telephone.
ConsumerAffairs gives HSBC 1 out of 5 stars with 673 reviews. Again- waiting times even in branches was clocked at over an hour in branches all over the world. Marathon phone waiting wasn’t rewarded with effective customer service.
Mybanktracker rates HSBC 1 out of 5 stars with 71 reviews. Customer service is seen to be very, very poor. Online banking and service issues are ongoing.
Given that HSBC have a market value of over £120 billion, perhaps they don’t feel they need to value each and every account holder. Times are changing, though and people have little reason to waste time with huge banks when they need to make transfers. HSBC is a mighty banking machine offering poor customer service to those who are account holders. It’s far easier and more profitable to turn away from HSBC for travel money and foreign exchange services with the added bonus of having not having to wait on hold for service!
1 out of 5 stars for customer service and foreign exchange value
Traditionalists may enjoy feeling secure with a familiar banking brand. Some of HSBC’s services like a weekly Expat email may feel like support from home.
HSBC foreign exchange seems to operate out of the old fashioned notion that the money they trade is theirs and not their account holders. HSBC behaves opposite to the way companies specializing in foreign exchange work. Time is money, and HSBC has average phone wait time of 40 minutes.