Citigroup and Bank of America Post ‘Profits’

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TARP-sponsored financial institutions Citigroup and Bank of America posted profits this morning, but there's little reason for respective CEOs Vikram Pandit and Ken Lewis to crank up the Ludacris just yet. Bank of America is still down 5.5 percent from last year, and lost more than $2 billion to credit cards, because that's what happens when people don't have jobs. Citigroup is struggling with credit losses, too, which we predict is going to get much worse, since they like to make sure their customers get paper statements that don't match up at all with the ones online, and assess you weird fees, and generally have a customer-service department that is so incompetent and unhelpful that one is tempted to default on one's bill so as to just not deal with them any longer, especially the one called Jeanine. The $4.3 billion profit they've declared is based on the sale of their Smith Barney unit to Morgan Stanley — a one-time deal, like selling a bunch of your grandma's antiques on eBay — and oh, the loss of 30,000 employees worldwide.

BofA's Net Edges Lower; Citi Swings to Profit [WSJ]