We’re still in shock at how much money Citi has had to raise to shore up its balance sheet (or, rather, were in shock that the company could be so unfathomably stupid in its debt gambling business), but Citi-killer Meredith Whitney thinks the latest $4.5 billion infusion isn’t nearly enough. Fortune:
Oppenheimer analyst Meredith Whitney writes in a report out late Tuesday that the bank’s decision to sell $3 billion in common stock won’t keep Citi from having to raise more money via further stock sales and asset dispositions. “The fact that Citi raised capital at this time did not come as a surprise to us, but the fact that the company raised such a small amount of capital at this time confounds us,” she writes. She expects to see Citi raising an additional $10 billion to $15 billion in capital, on top of the nearly $40 billion it has raised since December. If she’s right – and she often has been since her call last fall that Citi would have to cut its dividend – the bank still has a ways to go to optimise its capital structure, as finance chief Gary Crittenden put it in Tuesday’s stock-sale announcement.
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