Citigroup Inc (C) Stock Dips Despite Q3 Earnings Beat


Analysts expressed concerns about higher reserves set aside for bad loans and about a weak trading performance.

Quarterly revenue at the New York-based bank was $18.17 billion, up from $17.76 billion a year ago and topping analysts' consensus forecast of $17.896 billion.

Shares in both banks were down slightly in early trade. Citi reported a 3% year-on-year rise in global consumer banking revenue, while in North America retail banking jumped by 12%, excluding mortgages.

USA banks have spent hundreds of millions of dollars attracting consumers to their credit cards with offers of cash-back on spending, plane tickets and free borrowing on balances transferred from other cards.

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"In general, the promotional balances, while a range of offers vary, they do go up to 21 months".

Citigroup's investment bank was the driver of the bank's profit growth in the quarter, despite a notable drop in bond trading revenue.

While Citi's trading desks focus heavily on bond and currency trading, it was the bank's other trading desks that stood out. Banks are looking to growth in loans to help offset the trading slump.

Trading revenue during the fourth quarter of 2016 benefited from a surge in trading activity following the US election.

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Also in ICG, in the closely-watched Markets and Securities Services unit, revenues rose 3% to $4.6bn, with improved sales at its Securities Services arm and the proceeds from the sale of a fixed income analytics unit more than compensating for lower Markets revenues. It will report third-quarter earnings on Tuesday. This represents a 55% drop when compared to the same period of the year prior.

The increase in revenues were driven by growth in both the Institutional Clients Group and Global Consumer Banking segments, partially offset by lower revenues in Corporate/Other segment primarily due to the continued wind-down of legacy costs.

Citigroup's stock has risen 26% this year, by far the best among the U.S.'s six biggest banks, thanks in part to the announcement of a plan to return $60 billion in capital through 2020.

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