Report: Citigroup's Stress Test Hampered by Audit Lapses

By Emerging MarketsFOXBusiness

The Federal Reserve’s decision to reject Citigroup’s (NYSE:C) capital plan was reportedly caused in part by weaknesses in the banking conglomerate’s auditing and controls.

The report comes after Citi revealed $400 million worth of fraud at its Mexican subsidiary and said federal authorities are investigating its money-laundering concerns.

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According to the Financial Times, weaknesses in auditing in far-flung outposts contributed to Citi failing the Fed’s capital assessments.

Last week, Citi became the only major U.S. bank to have its plans for dividend increases and share buybacks rejected by the central bank, which also shot down the capital plans of four foreign banks.

The negative result was not caused by the alleged fraud at Banamex, the Mexican subsidiary, the FT reported.

The Citi failure has irked investors and rattled senior executives at the New York-based bank.

One senior executive told the FT Citi CEO Michael Corbat had shown himself to be “overconfident” that he repaired the bank’s relationship with regulators and had “mistaken a ‘not bad’ relationship for a good relationship.”

Another exec told the paper Corbat is facing “unhappy staff, shareholders and some people who are both -- like myself.”

There is no sign that Corbat, who became CEO less than 18 months ago, nor his lieutenants are in jeopardy of losing their jobs, the FT reported. “I don’t think heads will roll,” a senior executive said.

Shares of Citi ticked up 0.70% to $47.58 in premarket trading Monday morning, putting them on track to trim their 2014 slump of about 9%.

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