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Mortgages are bulk of troubled Citigroup assets
February 28, 2009 / 1:36 AM / 9 years ago

Mortgages are bulk of troubled Citigroup assets

NEW YORK, Feb 27 (Reuters) - Mortgage and real estate assets constitute more than two-thirds of the $300.8 billion Citigroup Inc (C.N) portfolio in which the government agreed to share in losses, the bank said on Friday.

Citigroup also said net consumer credit losses in each of the first two quarters of this year could be $1 billion to $2 billion above the third-quarter 2008 level, and that “at this time we believe that we will be at the higher end of this range.”

In addition, Citigroup said it is in talks with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over goodwill. A large goodwill writedown for consumer banking revealed earlier Friday more than doubled the bank’s previously reported fourth-quarter loss, and boosted its 2008 deficit to $27.68 billion.

Disclosures in Citigroup’s annual report filed with the SEC show how the housing slump and subsequent credit crisis are weighing on the third-largest U.S. bank.

Citigroup earlier Friday announced a new rescue package that could lead to the U.S. government taking a 36 percent equity stake. Shares of Citigroup fell 39 percent, and touched their lowest level in more than 18 years.

In the SEC filing, New York-based Citigroup said $187.9 billion of the $300.8 billion portfolio were mortgage-related loans, securities and lending commitments, including $154.1 billion of first and second consumer mortgages.

Another $19.9 billion of the assets related to commercial real estate, while $16.2 billion constituted retail auto loans. securities. The remaining assets fell in several categories.

By segment, $191.6 billion of the assets were consumer loans, $51.5 billion were unfunded lending commitments, $31.9 billion were securities and $25.8 billion were corporate loans, the bank said.

Citigroup separately reported that a growing number of mortgage borrowers have low credit scores and owe on their mortgages a large percentage of what their homes are worth.

The bank said 26 percent of borrowers with first mortgages ended the year with credit scores below 620, a level thought to divide “prime” from “subprime” borrowers, up from 17 percent at the time the loans were made.

It also said 25.4 percent of first mortgage borrowers with credit scores below 620 and who owed more than 90 percent of their homes’ value were at least 90 days delinquent at year end.

Citigroup shares closed Friday at $1.50. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; Editing by Gary Hill)

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