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Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Old Jan 14th 2022, 2:18 pm
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Angry Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

We returned to the UK a few years ago and in order to ease the transition my wife opened US HSBC Advance account with a UK address and also has a UK HSBC account. That worked OK (although HSBC could actually be a pain in the proverbial at times). It was very useful to have a US account to pay and accept US money - tax, birthday present purchases, transfer money to family, etc.

Then at the end of last year HSBC informed us that they would no longer be in personal banking in the USA and they were selling our account to Citizen (CITI Bank) online account! That has now taken place and would probably also be OK except, now they have our account, Citizen say they require a US phone number in order to verify any transactions and if we don't provide them with one they require us to close the account by early February!

Anyone else with this dilemma? What is a good solution to retaining a US banking presence from the UK - mostly looking towards a future when my wife may want her US pension paid into a US dollar account?

Richard

Last edited by CaptainPea; Jan 14th 2022 at 3:49 pm.
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 3:30 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

That is a shocker! We also have had a US and a UK HSBC account this last 5 or 6 years, the US account being registered with our UK address and UK phone number. I have 2 US pensions going into it plus tax refunds etc. If the same happens to us then we do fortunately have a US Skype phone number that we can use except it doesn’t receive text messages.
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 3:52 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Their press release said they were closing retail banking and moving to "wealth management" - it may be that you have enough money moving through your account that they want to keep your business. . . for now.

Richard
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 4:33 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Originally Posted by CaptainPea View Post
Their press release said they were closing retail banking and moving to "wealth management" - it may be that you have enough money moving through your account that they want to keep your business. . . for now.

Richard
I expect that it is only a matter of time. Thanks for letting me know, at least I now won’t be surprised when it happens.
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 4:54 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

It seems that are there are now VoIP/ virtual phone numbers that can send and receive txts through an app. I don't have any direct experience myself, but I did find this page from 2019 - assume there are other competing service providers.
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 8:08 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

What about opening a Wise Borderless account, within which you can hold money in different currencies, including US $?
With the Sterling pot, you get a sort code and account number so it’s just like having a UK bank account.
Maybe having a pot in US dollars would give you something resembling a US bank account?
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Old Jan 14th 2022, 8:39 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Originally Posted by Helen1964 View Post
What about opening a Wise Borderless account, within which you can hold money in different currencies, including US $?
With the Sterling pot, you get a sort code and account number so it’s just like having a UK bank account. ....
Except it isn't actually a bank account, and therefore isn't insured. That may, or may not be important to you, (maybe you only carry a small balance and use it primarily as a step for transfers) but it is something you should be aware of.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 8:29 am
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

We had the same problem of requiring a US phone number to receive security verification numbers for our Vanguard account. We already had a Skype account so added a US phone number and now get notifications via Skype.

Since then I’ve found this article https://www.expatfinance.us/united-s...e-verification which gives more options.

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Old Jan 15th 2022, 11:04 am
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Originally Posted by Dizzyp View Post
We had the same problem of requiring a US phone number to receive security verification numbers for our Vanguard account. We already had a Skype account so added a US phone number and now get notifications via Skype.

Since then I’ve found this article https://www.expatfinance.us/united-s...e-verification which gives more options.

That is a good article - thanks.

I used to use Skype for verification for my Vanguard accounts but a year or 2 back they started to allow overseas numbers so I now use my UK mobile phone to get the validation codes and it works great.

When we moved permanently to the UK in 2017 I updated our Vanguard accounts to show our street address as being in the UK but put the correspondence address as that of our daughter in California. Even though we signed up for and get all our Vanguard correspondence online that didn't stop California coming after us for the 2017 tax year saying that it looked like we were residents there. I had to complete forms and send in proof from all our 1099s etc to prove that we live in the UK. At that point I changed the Vanguard correspondence address to the UK.

California also came after our son for a similar reason. When he moved back he gave his company the address of his sister so that the following year his final W2 went to her and she took a photo of it for him to complete his return. A few weeks after he had sent proof to the California IRS that he never lived in California and that the company he worked for was a Texas company not a California company they actually wrote back to him in England with a letter that essentially said "We believe you THIS time." They never wrote back to me so I just assume they accepted that I didn't live in California and that Vanguard is not a California based company.
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Old Jan 15th 2022, 11:56 am
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Durham Lad, I've followed your recommendations about Roth IRA conversions and came unstuck when we tried to do this for the first time in 2021! When we attempted to do the conversion, Vanguard wanted to deduct tax withholding from the conversion (which is never recommended). This was because we had a non-US address so we changed all our account addresses to a friend in California. Then we were able to do the conversion. So, you're saying that we can have the correspondence address in US but the residential address in UK (or for us the Netherlands)? So far, since we left California in 2013 we've had no dealings with the Tax Board (although we have a condo in Oregon so still on the hook for tax there).

We still want to do a few more conversions before we need to start taking distributions from our main IRA and I'd rather we could tell the truth and give a foreign phone number for account verifications.

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Old Jan 15th 2022, 3:00 pm
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Default Re: Goodbye US HSBC - you dumped us

Originally Posted by Dizzyp View Post
Durham Lad, I've followed your recommendations about Roth IRA conversions and came unstuck when we tried to do this for the first time in 2021! When we attempted to do the conversion, Vanguard wanted to deduct tax withholding from the conversion (which is never recommended). This was because we had a non-US address so we changed all our account addresses to a friend in California. Then we were able to do the conversion. So, you're saying that we can have the correspondence address in US but the residential address in UK (or for us the Netherlands)? So far, since we left California in 2013 we've had no dealings with the Tax Board (although we have a condo in Oregon so still on the hook for tax there).

We still want to do a few more conversions before we need to start taking distributions from our main IRA and I'd rather we could tell the truth and give a foreign phone number for account verifications.
You absolutely can have the street address in the UK and correspondence address in the US. That was our situation until last year when I changed our correspondence address to be the same as our street address here in the UK. A week or so ago I made our very last Roth conversation, so we are now both 100% Roth. I expected to be required to make a tax withholding from everything I’ve read here, but that option didn’t even appear on the screen so the conversion has now gone through with no withholding which is perfect.
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