Citigroup Q4 Earnings Beat Estimates On Top-Line Strength

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Citigroup (C - Free Report) delivered a positive earnings surprise of 4.4% in fourth-quarter 2019, backed by revenue strength. Adjusted earnings per share of $1.90 for the quarter handily outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.82.

Including one-time gain, net income was $5 billion or $2.15 per share compared with the $4.3 billion or $1.64 per share recorded in the prior-year quarter.

Citigroup recorded higher revenues riding on consumer banking, investment banking, and market revenues during the reported quarter. Though equity market revenues disappointed on a more challenging environment in derivatives, fixed income revenues were on an upswing. Moreover, investment banking revenues increased on strong underwriting business, partly muted by lower advisory business. Further, loans escalated.

However, rise in expenses was on the downside. Moreover, cost of credit soared.

For full-year 2019, net income came in at $19.4 billion compared with the $18 billion recorded in 2018.

Expenses Flare Up, Revenues Improve

For full-year 2019, the company reported revenues of $74.3 billion, up 2% year over year. Moreover, it outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $73.7 billion.

Revenues were up 7% year over year to $18.4 billion in the fourth quarter. The reported figure also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $17.7 billion. Higher revenues, both from Global Consumer Banking (GCB) and Institutional Clients Group (ICG), mainly led to this upside.

GCB revenues increased 5% year over year to $8.5 billion. Higher revenues in North, Latin America, and Asia GCB resulted in this upsurge. Notably, both retail banking and card revenues escalated.

In the Institutional Clients Group (ICG) segment, revenues came in at $9.4 billion in the quarter, up 10% year over year. Higher investment banking and fixed income market revenues were partly offset by lower equity market revenues.

Corporate/Other revenues came in at $542 million, up 8% from the prior-year quarter. This upside stemmed from gains on investments, partly underscored by the wind-down of legacy assets.

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