HSBC, the UK's largest bank, has said it has made a $17.2bn (£8.7bn) loss after the decline in the US housing market hit the value of its loans.
But its annual profits still rose 10% to $24.2bn (£12.2bn), up from $22.08bn the year before.
The write-down is the largest of the big-five UK banks because HSBC has large operations in the US.
The bank said the global financial system had come under "extraordinary strain" in 2007.
"The outlook for the rest of 2008 is uncertain," said HSBC chairman Stephen Green.
"The economic slowdown and the credit outlook in the US may well get worse before they get better," he added.
Not surprising given the state of the current world market... BBC News Report