HSBC is preparing its first sale of sub-prime loans since the height of the financial crash, as Britain's largest bank begins to off-load more than $40bn (£25bn) of toxic US debt it still holds on its books.
HSBC was one of the first banks to recognise the problems in the US sub-prime housing market, where millions of Americans were given loans to buy properties they could not afford.
The bank's warning in February 2007 of the large losses it said it expected to take on the low-quality mortgages precipitated the credit crunch.
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