HSBC: Banker out of business after questioning climate change warnings

Stuart Kirk’s offer is said to have been pre-agreed upon by the chiefs (Image: HSBC)

HSBC has suspended a senior banker who claimed that warnings about the climate crisis were “unconfirmed” during an incendiary display, it was alleged.

The chief investment officer responsible for the city giant wondered if anyone would care about cities being underwater in the future.

Now it is expected that Stuart Kirk will be investigated after the event at London Last week – despite comments that were reportedly agreed in advance with the chiefs.

He is said to have told a conference that there was always ‘some great work telling me about the apocalypse’ and showed slides that argued that ‘uncertain, sharp, partisan, self-serving, appalling warnings are always wrong’.

Kirk also claimed that central bankers exaggerated the risks of global warming, according to financial times.

Now the bank is under pressure to sack him after the presentation titled “Why Investors Don’t Need to Worry About Climate Risk”.

The banker accused officials at the United Nations and the Bank of England of overestimating the financial risks of climate change.

His comments come after the latest dire warnings from experts about the state of the environment around the world, with The UN chief warned last month that the world was on the ‘fast track of climate catastrophe’ After a devastating historical report.

But the dismayed attendees of the Financial Times’ ethical money conference were reportedly told by Mr. Kirk last Thursday: “Who cares if Miami has been underwater six meters in 100 years? Amsterdam has been underwater over six meters for the ages and this is a really beautiful place.” .

The CEO of HSBC strongly condemned the comments.

Noel Quinn wrote on LinkedIn this weekend that the announcements “are inconsistent with HSBC’s strategy and do not reflect the views of HSBC’s senior leadership or HSBC Asset Management.”

He added: “I do not agree – at all – with the statements made at the Financial Times Ethical Money Summit last week.

We aspire to be the leading bank supporting the global economy in the transition to net zero.

Senior HSBC officials distanced themselves from the comments, but the topic of the show was agreed internally (Image: AFP)

“We have a lot of work to do, and I’m determined that last week’s comments won’t distract our team.”

However, it is understood that the theme of the show has been given the internal green light.

HSBC has yet to issue an official statement on the reported suspension of Mr Kirk and said it “cannot comment on individual staff”.

But Nicholas Moreau, chief executive of Panel’s asset management division, also distanced himself from Kirk’s views.

“Observations made at the FT Moral Money event do not in any way reflect the views of HSBC Asset Management nor the HSBC Group,” he said in a statement last Friday.

HSBC, which has been targeted by groups like the Extinction Rebellion because of its climate credentials, is likely to see the comments particularly embarrassing as it seeks to bolster its green reputation.

Investors recently voted to support a new climate pledge.

Mr. Kirk was appointed to head HSBC’s Responsible Investment Unit in July 2021 – a role that includes consideration of risks to ESG investments.

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