Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Citigroup Crisis

Citigroup is on crisis now, their CEO quit after their earning drop 54% , and now the Bank faces investigation by SEC. Analist Meridth Whitney says that their only way to save the bank is to sell it by parts. In wall Street ppl start calling Citigroup the CITIcorpse. this maybe the beginning of another Enron.

Meredith Whitney: The $360bn analyst

The analyst who sparked pandemonium in global financial markets with a simple note has a colourful history

The words of one woman were enough to knock fragile stock markets into a freefall not seen since the advent of the sub-prime crisis in August, after a pessimistic report on Citigroup's future sparked a chain reaction of panic selling.

The report of Meredith Whitney, a financial services analyst from CIBC World Market, a subsidiary of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, led to about $369 billion (£177 billion) being wiped off the US stock market value by the end of yesterday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid more than 360 points, or 2.6 per cent.

In London, the FTSE lost £32 billion, dropping 65 points. Today another £15.5 billion has been lost, bringing the total to £47 billion. Indications are that the FTSE will make some recovery in afternoon trading.

Ms Whitney's report caused Citibank to lose more than $15 billion of market capitalisation, with its stock plunging more than 7 per cent in the first half hour of trading. In her report, Ms Whitney said Citigroup would need to cut its dividend or sell assets to avert what she said was a $30 billion capital shortfall. It was the biggest stumble for Citibank’s shares since September 2002.

“No one had the moxie to put in print what I put in print,” Ms Whitney said.

Ms Whitney, 37, the maven (and expert) of the financial industry, has been steadily accruing influence and audience, and she is frequently quoted in numerous publications, ranging from The New York Times to Business Week, from Forbes to Fortune. She is also a regular business contributor to Fox News, 82.1 per cent owned by The News Corporation, parent company of The Times.

It was when making an appearance on Fox News' Bulls and Bears programme that she met her future husband, John Charles Layfield, a professional wrestler and former World Wrestling Entertainment champion.

Mr Layfield, whose wrestling persona is based on JR Ewing, the oil tycoon from the 1980s television series Dallas, had just written his book Have More Money Now: A Common Sense Approach to Financial Management.

The two immediately clicked over dinner.

Mr Layfield later said of his wife: "She took a country boy like me and kind of refined me. I know what fork to use now at the dinner table, and I drink my beer from a glass."

Prior to her work at CIBC, where she and her team focuses on mid-to-large sized banks as well as corporate financial institutions, Ms Whitney spent four years leading Financial Institutions research at Wachovia Securities. Before that she spent six years covering Specialty Finance at CIBC World Markets (formerly Oppenheimer).

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