By Vikram Pandit, CEO March 11, 2010 06:28 AM
Welcome to new.citi.com, a new way for us to share ideas and create dialogue on all sorts of topics ranging from the global economy to personal finance, from microfinance to mobile technology. Being in more than 100 countries means we have a range of perspectives, and we hope this site will encourage lots of discussion, ideas and debate.
As Citi begins a new chapter in our nearly 200-year history, this new platform is needed now more than ever. We all are intensely focused on serving our clients and customers, and on leveraging our innovative spirit and international footprint to boost recovery and drive shareholder growth. We know we have a responsibility to do nothing less.
I hope you'll take the time to join us in this space and participate in conversations. We welcome your feedback and comments. We promise we're listening.
By Citi March 10, 2010 06:24 PMCiti helps our customers avoid overdraft fees every day. We have never allowed overdrafts at ATMs or through debit point-of-sale transactions if the customer does not have sufficient funds. We are pleased to see that some other banks are now doing the same in advance of overdraft fee regulations taking effect this year. In addition, Citi also offers low-balance alerts, real-time access to balances online and through mobile services, and overdraft protection products and services, such as our overdraft line of credit and linked accounts with a $10 transfer fee. We're working to make these overdraft protection products available to even more consumers. Also, unlike most of our competitors, we do not assess continuous overdraft charges that can lead to additional costs for consumers.
By Vikram Pandit, CEO March 04, 2010 05:29 PMEarlier today, I appeared before the Congressional Oversight Panel on the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), and had the opportunity to report to the panel on how Citi has fundamentally changed over the course of the last two years by bolstering our financial strength, sharpening our strategy around core banking businesses and overhauling risk management and reducing risk exposures.
I also reiterated Citi's gratitude for the investments the U.S. government made in Citi and the financial system. In addition, I took the opportunity to discuss Citi's support of prudent and effective reform of the financial regulatory system and our ongoing support of consumers and businesses across the U.S.
Click here to view the complete prepared testimony.
By Citi March 02, 2010 12:02 PM
Today there's a big need - but also a big opportunity - to support advances in clean technology, and to spur green job creation. Citi and the Citi Foundation have been committed to green initiatives for years, especially at the global level. But we're just as excited to support a new mentorship program right in our backyard that's working to get tomorrow's best ideas off the ground today.
SJF Advisory Services, a nonprofit organization that helps entrepreneurs and early-stage businesses in the "cleantech" industry, has matched promising cleantech entrepreneurs in the New York area with experienced industry leaders and veteran entrepreneurs. The aim is that with guidance and feedback from their mentors, peer-to-peer discussions, educational sessions on hot topics, feedback from SJF Ventures' investment team and access to its network - these entrepreneurs will be well equipped to develop and grow their businesses in order to achieve greater impact.
We wish SJF's first round of program participants much success. To learn more details about the program, check out our press release here.
By Citi February 26, 2010 02:03 PMOn February 22, 2010, a number of new rules that implement the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 (Credit CARD Act of 2009) went into effect. This federal law was passed in May 2009 and is designed to protect consumers. Some of the new rules already went into effect in August 2009 and more will be implemented in July and August 2010, but the majority of the new rules went into effect this week.
These new rules will affect the credit card industry in three key areas: the information that must be disclosed to customers; rates, fees and credit limits; and billing and payment practices. Details about these changes can be found at the Federal Reserve's web site.
By Citi February 26, 2010 10:35 AMSingle, 36- to 49-year-olds in Dallas spend $57 per month on hobbies. Who knew?
Anyone might now, with the launch of personal finance site BundleSM, removing the veil of secrecy from how other people save and spend their money.
Bundle, of which we at Citi are proud to be an investor and strategic partner, boasts one of the most extensive collections of free consumer spending data on the Web. This allows users to measure their own activity against others just like them.
By Citi February 23, 2010 02:28 PMDiffuse information is the enemy of good decision making. So we've introduced CitiDirect (R) PRISM, our latest tool to bring together data from multiple, unrelated sources to help asset managers make better, faster decisions that minimize risk and maximize the performance of their clients' investments.
Using cutting-edge heat-mapping visualization technology, CitiDirect PRISM creates a single information view that equips fund managers as well as asset owners to more easily grasp a portfolio's performance and risk exposure.
It does what smarter technology can do: provide insights into complex data relationships across several metrics and enable interaction with large amounts of data in an intuitive way. The flexible aggregation and reporting dashboards improve upon existing tools that help spot patterns and anomalies that could be missed in larger reports.
The net result of CitiDirect PRISM? Information that's more available and useful, resulting in improved risk evaluation.
By Citi February 22, 2010 01:09 PM
For many Americans, homeownership is the investment of a lifetime, and having it jeopardized by job loss or other financial setbacks can be overwhelming, to say the least.
At Citi, we understand the special responsibility we bear, and are working every day to keep distressed homeowners out of foreclosure.
For more information on the CitiMortgage programs, visit www.citimortgage.com
By Citi February 17, 2010 01:08 PMThese days, the mobile phone transcends voice communication. We have the power to book a dinner reservation, purchase movie tickets for afterward and ensure a cab is waiting at the end of evening - all from the palm of our hand.
So why should philanthropy be any different? This question rings especially true in light of the recent devastation in Haiti.
CauseWorld, a new application from shopkick for the iPhone and Android phones (with other platforms coming soon), lets users give back to important global causes simply by visiting businesses in their local area.
With each visit, the user earns "karma points" that they can donate to causes they choose from a list in the CauseWorld application. Users can donate to multiple causes, including the American Red Cross disaster relief in Haiti.
Citi and Kraft have provided nearly $500,000 in donations to power CauseWorld's launch. It is our hope that other companies will follow suit upon seeing the results that such an innovative business model can achieve.
CauseWorld is available for free at the iPhone App store and on Android devices.
By Citi February 15, 2010 08:00 AMAt Citi, we are deeply committed to finding every solution possible to help families avoid foreclosure. Unfortunately, and despite our best efforts, the reality is that not every homeowner has the financial ability to remain in their home.
So Citi has recently launched a pilot program designed to help distressed CitiMortgage customers who are ineligible for other homeowner assistance programs. The Citi Foreclosure Alternatives Program allows eligible borrowers to avoid the foreclosure process and stay in their homes for a period of up to six months in exchange for the deed to their property. At the end of the six months, the borrower will turn over the property deed to CitiMortgage. To help with their move, CitiMortgage will provide relocation counseling and a minimum of $1,000 in financial assistance. This deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure program is being piloted in Texas, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey and Ohio.
We hope this program can help homeowners make a smooth transition into the next chapter of their lives.
For more information on Citi's homeowner assistance programs, visit www.citimortgage.com