Citigroup shares continue to slide despite better than expected earnings and revenue

Joe Hall
Follow Joe
Citibank To Cut 11,000 Jobs
Costcutters: Citi has seen net income rise after cutting costs (Source: Getty)

Citigroup shares slipped in pre-market trading - even after the American investment bank reported better than expected earnings in its fourth quarter reports.

The figures

Revenue of $18.5bn (£12.9bn), a four per cent increase on a year earlier, beat analysts' expectations of a figure closer to $17bn while earnings per share of $1.06 also beat predictions.

Citi's net income hit its highest level since 2006 at $17.1bn - following a $3.4bn increase boosted by higher revenues and lower operating expenses.

Yet despite the strong quarter, investors may have been unimpressed with the bigger picture: Full-year revenue fell two per cent from $77.6bn to $76.1bn.

Read more: Battle of the banks: did Bank of America, JP Morgan, Citi or Goldman Sachs do better?

Why it's interesting

Chief executive Michael Corbat is on a mission to cut costs at Citi as the bank grapples with a loss of investors' confidence in Wall Street.

Since the turn of the year, Citi's stock has fallen by 12 per cent and is currently 7.5 per cent down year-on-year.

Corbat's job was not made easier by a hefty $70m fine imposed by US regulators following a review into how it sold credit card products.

Yet Citi managed to reduce operating expenses by 23 per cent in the quarter to $11.1bn. It has now shed over 20 consumer and institutional businesses in the last three years.

What Citigroup said

Corbat commented:

Overall, we had strong performance during 2015. The $17.1 billion [sic] we generated in net income was the highest since 2006, when our company was very different in terms of headcount, footprint, mix of businesses and assets.

We have made sustainable investments not only in our capital planning process but also in the risk, control and compliance functions, which are critical to maintaining our license to do business. We have undoubtedly become a simpler, smaller, safer and stronger institution.

In short

Early signs suggest Citi's share price slide is not likely to be halted anytime soon, but beyond the industry-wide concerns over a plummeting oil price and poor global outlook there are signs for encouragement at Citi.

Related articles