Shrinking Credit Losses Boost Citigroup Profit

Citi Field
Citi Field

Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C) reported first-quarter results before markets opened this morning. The bank posted adjusted diluted quarterly earnings per share (EPS) of $1.29 on revenues of $20.8 billion. In the same period a year ago, Citigroup reported adjusted EPS of $0.69 on revenues of $18.7 billion. First-quarter results also compare to the consensus estimates for EPS of $1.17 on revenues of $20.17 billion.

On a GAAP basis, excluding credit/debit valuation adjustments, revenues for the first quarter totaled $20.5 billion and first-quarter EPS totaled $1.23, reflecting higher revenues and lower net credit losses. Credit losses in the first quarter totaled $319 million before taxes, compared with $1.3 billion in the first quarter a year ago.

The bank's CEO said:

During the quarter, we benefitted from seasonally strong results in our markets businesses, sustained momentum in investment banking, continued year-over-year growth in loans and deposits in Citicorp, and a more favorable credit environment. However, the environment remains challenging and we are sure to be tested as we go through the year.

At the end of the first quarter, the bank's Basel I Tier 1 capital ratio was 13.1% and the common ratio was 11.89%. Citigroup's estimated Basel III Tier 1 common ratio at the end of the quarter was 9.3%.

Net credit losses in all the bank's divisions totaled about $3 billion, which though not a small amount was substantially better than a year ago. At Citi Holdings, net credit losses in the first quarter totaled $930 million, compared to $1.73 billion a year ago. And at the bank's global consumer banking division, credit losses fell from $2.28 billion in the first quarter a year ago to $2 billion this year.

Shares are up about 1.7% in premarket trading this morning, at $45.55 in a 52-week range of $24.61 to $47.92. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of around $51.70 before today's results were announced.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Banking & Finance, Earnings Tagged: C