Citigroup announced Thursday it'll exit 13 international consumer banking markets, shifting its focus to wealth management and faraway from retail banking in places where it's small. Citigroup will focus its global consumer banking business on four markets: Singapore, Hong Kong, London and therefore the United Arab Emirates. But Citigroup will depart China, India and 11 other retail markets, where "we do not have the size we'd like to compete," said Citi Chief Executive Jane Fraser.
Fraser, who moved into the CEO role in March, described the pivot as a part of an attempt to "double down" on wealth management, where the expansion opportunities are better. Most of the markets being exited are in Asia, where Citigroup's global consumer banking business at the top of 2020 had $6.5 billion in revenues, 224 retail branches and $123.9 billion in deposits.
The move came as Citigroup reported first-quarter profits of $7.9 billion, quite 3 times the extent within the year-ago period. Revenues fell seven percent to $19.3 billion.As with other large banks, Citigroup's profits were bolstered by a robust performance in its investment banking and trading businesses, also because the release of reserves put aside for bad loans. These benefits were offset somewhat by a haul from low interest rates.The other 11 markets suffering from the choice are: Australia, Bahrain, Indonesia, South Korea , Malaysia, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.