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A sign sits above a HSBC bank. [Photo/CFP]

HSBC, Britain's biggest bank, is leaning towards keeping its headquarters in the UK, 10 months after it said it was considering a move

back to Asia, to Hong Kong or other cities, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the process.

The bank, which was originally founded in Shanghai and Hong Kong in the mid 19th century, announced last April that it was considering a move out of London, possibly to Hong Kong, where it was headquartered until it acquired Midland Bank Plc and changed its domicile to the UK in 1993.

The decision to consider moving back to Asia was in part triggered by rising bank taxation and increased regulatory pressure in the UK, but the Financial Times said the situation in British banking had become more stable since last April's announcement.

China's economic climate had also become a factor, the FT reported, citing the people familiar with the process.

HSBC is due to hold a board meeting on February 19, three days before the bank announces its full-year results.

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