HSBC Bank USA
|Type||Subsidiary of HSBC Holdings plc|
|Industry||Finance and Insurance|
|Founded||1850 (as Marine Midland Bank)|
|Headquarters||New York, NY, USA|
|Employees||43,000 (including HSBC Finance Corporation)|
HSBC Bank USA, National Association, an American subsidiary of UK-based HSBC Holdings plc, is a bank with its operational head office in New York City and its nominal head office in McLean, Virginia (as designated on its charter). HSBC Bank USA, N.A. is a national bank chartered under the National Bank Act, which means that it is regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), a part of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation acquired a 51% shareholding in Marine Midland Bank of New York State, headquartered in Buffalo, New York, in 1980 and extended to full ownership in 1987. The banks continued to operate under the Marine Midland name until 1998, when the branch offices were rebranded as HSBC Bank USA in line with the worldwide corporate identity of HSBC.
In 1994, Marine Midland acquired Spectrum Home Mortgage, which operated in eight states. Then in 1995, Marine acquired United Northern Federal Savings Bank, with branches in Watertown and Lowville, New York. Marine Midland also acquired The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation's six New York City retail branches, and the next year Hang Seng Bank's two branches in New York City.
That same year, Marine Midland acquired 11 branches from the East River Savings Bank in the New York Metropolitan area. Marine also acquired the US dollar clearing business of JPMorgan. At the same time, HSBC transferred two branches in the northwestern United States to HSBC Bank Canada. The next year, Marine completed its acquisition of First Federal Savings and Loan from Toronto-based CT Financial Services, for $620 million. First Federal Savings, headquartered in Rochester, had $7.2 billion in assets, 1,600 employees, 79 retail branches in New York State and 15 mortgage origination offices in nine states.
In 1998, Marine Midland acquired First Commercial Bank of Philadelphia, which had been established in 1989 as the first-state chartered Asian-American bank in Pennsylvania. The bank served the local Asian community, which often faced language and cultural barriers at traditional American banks. Marine paid $23.75 million for First Commercial, which had $90 million in assets and $78 million in deposits in two branches.
After the acquisition of Republic National Bank in 1999, the head office of HSBC Bank USA moved from One HSBC Center in Buffalo to 452 Fifth Avenue, New York City, although the official headquarters are in Wilmington, Delaware.
On July 31, 2011, First Niagara Financial Group, headquartered in Buffalo, announced that they had bought all of HSBC's upstate New York branches for $1 billion.
In December of 2012, HSBC paid a record $1,900,000,000 fine for laundering in excess of $881,000,000 in drug cartel money and violating anti-terrorism sanctions.
HSBC Bank USA was the ninth largest bank at the end of 2008 as an individual bank. (Not including subsidiaries)
Prior to its deal with First Niagara there were some 400 HSBC branches throughout New York in addition to some 20 to 25 branches in other states, including Florida and California. There was a branch office on the ground floor of the World Trade Center in New York City.
In 2010, HSBC was rated the worst in customer advocacy by Forrester Research, which asked bank customers to rank their banks. In the national survey of approximately 4,500 banking customers assessing the top 50 banks, in answer to the question: “My financial provider does what’s best for me, not just its own bottom line,” HSBC set a new all-time low with a 16% rating, 10% below the previous year. 
Marine Midland owned several prominent properties, including the Marine Midland Building at 140 Broadway in Manhattan, near the World Trade Center. Completed in 1967, this 52-story, 688 ft (209.7 m) highrise provides 1.2 million square feet (110,000 m²) of office space in lower Manhattan and is noted for the distinctive Noguchi's Cube sculpture at its entrance. One HSBC Center is the tallest building in Buffalo, and is noted for its open entry level, under which the Buffalo Metro Rail passes.
Also of note, Marine Midland had purchased naming rights to the Buffalo sports and entertainment venue constructed in 1996, the Marine Midland Arena, home of the Buffalo Sabres. Today, the venue is known as the First Niagara Center.
- Money Economics Top 10 Banks Project
- Schultz, Jennifer Saranow, "The Least-Trusted Banks in America", The New York Times, February 3, 2010
- HSBC Bank USA website
- "Senate report criticizes HSBC for inadequate internal controls" by Brady Dennis, The Washington Post, July 16, 2012