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Banking

Jane Fraser faces two big challenges as Citi’s CEO in waiting

It seems odd that a good soldier like Mike Corbat should hand to one of his colleagues the tough task of leading Citi through the Covid battlefield.

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When Jane Fraser takes over as chief executive of Citigroup in February, she will face two big problems: JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America.

Unusual among the big three American banks, Citi’s brand is far stronger outside the US, while it is a less significant force in its home market – the world’s richest for banking and financial services.

Mike Corbat announced on Thursday his plan to retire next year, and had a stab at marking his own homework, pointing out that from 2012 to 2019 Citi’s net income increased from $7 billion to nearly $20 billion, while its return on tangible common equity increased from 5% to over 12%.

However, he acknowledged: “There is always more to do, and I believe the time is right for my successor to lead Citi through this next stage of progress.”


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