This excerpt taken from the HBC 20-F filed Mar 4, 2005.
Prior to 28 March 2003, HSBC Finance Corporation directors could choose to defer all or a portion of their cash compensation under the Deferred Fee Plan for Directors. At the end of the deferred period selected by the director, all accumulated amounts will be paid in shares in one or more instalments. Following the acquisition of HSBC Finance Corporation the rights to receive HSBC Finance Corporation common shares under the plan were
converted into rights to receive HSBC Holdings ordinary shares. No further awards will be granted under this plan. A summary of the rights to receive HSBC Holdings ordinary shares under this plan is set out below. Full details are available on www.hsbc.com by selecting Investor Relations, then Share plans or can be obtained upon request from the Group Company Secretary, 8 Canada Square, London E14 5HQ.
HSBC Holdings ordinary shares of US$0.50