Stephen Green, Baron Green of Hurstpierpoint

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The Right Honourable and The Rev
The Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint
Stephen Green, September 2006.jpg
Minister of State for Trade and Investment
In office
11 January 2011 – 11 December 2013
Preceded by Mark Prisk
Succeeded by Lord Livingston
Group Chairman of HSBC Group
In office
26 May 2006 – 3 December 2010
Preceded by John Bond
Succeeded by Douglas Flint
Group Chief Executive of HSBC Group
In office
1 June 2003 – 26 May 2006
Preceded by Keith Whitson
Succeeded by Michael Geoghegan
Personal details
Born (1948-11-07) 7 November 1948 (age 66)
Political party Conservative
Spouse(s) Janian
Children 2
Alma mater Exeter College, Oxford
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Profession Banker
Religion Church of England

Stephen Keith Green, Baron Green of Hurstpierpoint (born 7 November 1948) is a British Conservative politician, former Minister of State for Trade and Investment, and former Group Chairman of HSBC Holdings plc.


Lancing College

Green attended Lancing College and Exeter College, Oxford and received a master's degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He began his career with the British Government's Ministry of Overseas Development. In 1977 he joined McKinsey & Co Inc. management consultants, with whom he undertook assignments in Europe, North America and the Middle East.

He joined The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited in 1982 with responsibility for corporate planning activities, and in 1985 was put in charge of the development of the bank's global treasury operations. In 1992 he became Group Treasurer of HSBC Holdings plc with responsibility for the HSBC Group's treasury and capital markets businesses globally.

In March 1998 Green was appointed to the Board of HSBC Holdings plc as Executive Director of Investment Banking and Markets, responsible for the investment banking, private banking and asset management activities of the Group. He assumed additional responsibility for the Group's corporate banking business in May 2002. His appointment as Group Chief Executive took effect on 1 June 2003. Green oversaw the acquisition and integration of the U.S. consumer-finance group Household International, which represented HSBC's largest acquisition in a series of acquisitions made in the five years prior to Green's appointment as chief executive.

In January 2005, Green became Chairman of HSBC Bank plc, the group's UK clearing bank subsidiary, and Group Executive Chairman in June 2006. Shortly after, Bloomberg Markets magazine reported that HSBC was allowing money laundering by drug dealers and state sponsors of terrorism. Green said that “This was a singular and wholly irresponsible attack on the bank’s international compliance procedures”. Subsequent investigations however, confirmed that money laundering took place at HSBC [1] for several years throughout Green's tenure as Chief Executive and Chairman,[2][3] chiefly for the Sinaloa Cartel.[4] Stephen Green earned well over 25 million pounds per year at the time.

Green's successor as the top of HSBC, Stuart Gulliver, said “between 2004 and 2010, our anti-money laundering controls should have been stronger and more effective and we failed to spot and deal with unacceptable behaviour.”[5]

In September 2010, it was announced he would join the UK's Conservative – Liberal Democrat coalition government in early 2011 as an unpaid Minister of State for Trade and Investment.[6][7] He stepped down as Group Chairman of HSBC on 3 December 2010 and was replaced by Douglas Flint.[8] To enable him to be accountable to Parliament, he was created a life peer on 16 November 2010 as Baron Green of Hurstpierpoint, of Hurstpierpoint in the County of West Sussex,[9] and was introduced in the House of Lords on 22 November. He was Minister of State for Trade and Investment in both the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office from 11 January 2011 until 11 December 2013.


Some of his prior directorships included The Bank of Bermuda Limited, HSBC Mexico, SA and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited. He was also Chairman of HSBC Private Banking Holdings (Suisse) SA and HSBC North America Holdings Inc., Deputy Chairman of HSBC Trinkaus & Burkhardt AG and was a board member of HSBC France. In 2005 he was appointed a Trustee of the British Museum, a position from which he resigned before his appointment to Minister of State.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Green is an ordained priest in the Church of England,[11] having studied theology at Manchester University's Northern Ordination course while in Hong Kong,[12] and he is the author of the book "Serving God? Serving Mammon?".[13]

Green was awarded an honorary doctor's degree from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London in 2010.[14]

He is married to Janian and has two daughters, Suzannah and Ruth. He has a sister called Elizabeth who lives in the USA and a brother, George Francis Green, who is Professor of Labour Economics and Skills Development at the Institute of Education, University of London.


His reputation was damaged by revelations of his bank's role in the credit crisis, breaking US sanctions against Iran and laundering money for Columbian and Mexican drug cartels.[15]


  • "With the benefit of hindsight, this is an acquisition we wish we had not undertaken", Stephen Green, HSBC's chairman, said, referring to HSBC's $15Bn acquisition of the sub-prime lender Household International in 2003.[16]
  • Green on the banking industry: "The industry has done many things wrong. It is important to remember that many ordinary bankers have always sought to provide good service to their customers; but we must also recognise that there have been too many who have profoundly damaged the industry's reputation."[17]
  • "Underlying all these events is a question about the culture and ethics of the industry. It is as if, too often, people had given up asking whether something was the right thing to do, and focused only whether it was legal and complied with the rules. The industry needs to recover a sense of what is right and suitable as a key impulse for doing business."[18]
  • McKinsey News (March 20, 2006) quoted Green saying this on making acquisitions: "We use four criteria when approaching acquisitions – financial value creation, client and product portfolio synergies, systems integration, and the fourth is ‘culture.’ We ask, ‘will the cultures mesh? Is there a good human fit in the way we do business?’ We consider this very seriously because we know that a cultural clash would be devastating for our shared ethos."[19]


  1. ^ Kumar, Nikhil; Dunkley, Jamie (11 December 2012). "HSBC: The drug world's local bank". London: The Independent. Retrieved 16 June 2013. 
  2. ^ Treanor, Jill (25 July 2012). "Lord Green 'regrets' HSBC scandal but still refuses to answer questions". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  3. ^ "HSBC money laundering - what did Lord Green know?". Channel4. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  4. ^ "HSBC became bank to drug cartels, pays big for lapses". Reuters. 12 December 2012. 
  5. ^ "HSBC money-laundering scandal casts a cloud over Lord Green, the trade minister". London: the Daily Telegraph. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  6. ^ "Stephen Green appointed as UK Minister for Trade and Investment" (Press release). 7 September 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2010. 
  7. ^ "Experienced banker takes Government trade role". UK Trade & Investment. 8 September 2010. Retrieved 8 September 2010. 
  8. ^ "HSBC announces new leadership team" (Press release). HSBC Holdings plc. 24 September 2010. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  9. ^ The London Gazette: no. 59609. p. 22333. 19 November 2010.
  10. ^ "British Museum Trustees". 8 July 2005. 
  11. ^ "The real power behind No 10". The Independent (London: The Independent). 27 June 2005. Archived from the original on 2008-04-25. Retrieved 7 October 2013. 
  12. ^ Crockford's Clerical Directory under "The Reverend Prebendary The Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint"
  13. ^ Crowter, Harold S. (November 1996). "Serving God? Serving Mammon? (Book Review)". evangelicals Now. 
  14. ^ "Stephen Green, HSBC Chairman, Receives Honorary Doctorate". SOAS eNews (12). March 2010. 
  15. ^ Treanor, Jill (11 December 2012). "Bleak day for British banking as Libor arrests follow record fine for HSBC". London: Guardian. 
  16. ^ Croft, Jane (2 March 2009). "Risky US purchase rued in hindsight". Financial Times. 
  17. ^ Hosking, Patrick (3 March 2009). "HSBC's Stephen Green finds it's not easy to attack bonuses". The Times (London). Retrieved 27 March 2010. 
  18. ^ Lynch, Russell (2 March 2009). "HSBC in bid to raise £12.5bn". The Independent (London). Retrieved 27 March 2010. 
  19. ^ "Stephen Green (77-82 LON, NYO) Leads HSBC to the Crossroads of the World". McKinsey News. 20 March 2006. 

External links[edit]

Business positions
Preceded by
Keith Whitson
Group Chief Executive of HSBC Group
Succeeded by
Michael Geoghegan
Preceded by
John Bond
Group Chairman of HSBC Group
Succeeded by
Douglas Flint