MOSCOW -(MarketWatch)- HSBC Holdings PLC (HSBA.LN) is closing its Russian retail banking operations, retaining only an office for corporate lending, as international lenders faces growing challenges in a market dominated by state-controlled giants.
HSBC’s retail exit follows that of Barclays PLC (BARC.LN), which in February said it would sell its retail operations in Russia after taking a writedown of GBP243 million on an acquisition. In addition to Russia’s perenially poor investment climate, foreign financial firms in Russia have faced heightened bureaucracy and scrutiny from regulators who have close ties to the biggest state-controlled banks, OAO Sberbank (SBER.RS) and VTB Group (VTBR.RS).
Here. The concepts are the same in the U.S. as in Russia, they just appear different. In the U.S. and other so-called free countries, firms are controlled by regulations, subsidies, and threats. The people who work in these firms are not free to make decision based on what they think is best for the firm, they have to abide by what the politicians impose on them.