Citibank is planning to sell the consumer banking operations it has run for a century in Argentina, Brazil and Colombia as South America’s three biggest economies suffer a major downturn. The New York-based bank said in a statement that its decision was prompted by a desire to allocate resources where it can generate the best returns.
Citigroup said on Tuesday that it will bow out of the retail banking business in 11 markets, part of its ongoing effort since the financial crisis to restructure and slim down. The news came as the bank announced third-quarter earnings.
Banking giant Citigroup will pay 7bn dollars to US authorities to settle an investigation into risky sub-prime mortgages. Citigroup will pay 4bn to the Department of Justice and 2.5bn for consumer relief.
US Federal Reserve has rejected plans by Citigroup to buy back shares and boost dividends for shareholders. It cited deficiencies in the bank's ability to plan for how stressful situations would hurt its business. The decision is a setback for Citigroup boss Michael Corbat who was brought in to bolster internal controls after the bank failed stress tests two years ago.
Citigroup chief executive Vikram Pandit has surprised Wall Street by resigning with immediate effect. Mr Pandit is being replaced by Michael Corbat, who was previously the bank's chief for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.