New York Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C) announced today that one of its U.S. broker-dealer affiliates, Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CGMI), has agreed to a settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission resolving the SEC's industry-wide investigation of certain collateralized debt obligations (CDOs). The agreement is subject to court approval. Citigroup is fully reserved for this matter as of September 30, 2011.
Without admitting or denying the SEC's allegations, CGMI will pay disgorgement, interest and penalties totaling $285 million related to the marketing and sale of notes issued by Class V Funding III (Class V) in late 2006 and early 2007. The Commission has not charged CGMI or any individuals with any intentional or reckless misconduct in connection with Citigroup's CDO business activities. Citigroup understands that this settlement resolves all outstanding SEC inquiries into those activities.
"We are pleased to put this matter behind us and are focused on contributing to the economic recovery, serving our clients and growing responsibly. Since the crisis, we have bolstered our financial strength, overhauled the risk management function, significantly reduced risk on the balance sheet, and returned to the basics of banking," the Company said in a statement.
The Commission's complaint alleges that CGMI negligently failed to disclose in the Class V offering documents that CGMI played a role in the asset selection process for the transaction and retained a short position in certain of those assets. While CGMI did subsequently realize gains on short positions in Class V collateral, Citigroup affiliates also retained over $100 million of the notes issued by Class V and ultimately sustained losses on these positions, along with very substantial losses the company incurred on retained long positions in other CDOs.
Citi, the leading global financial services company, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.
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