Citi Swings to Surprise $1.6B Profit—1st in 18 Months

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2009 6:45 AM CDT
Citigroup Chief Executive Officer Vikram Pandit talks with reporters outside the White House in Washington, Friday, March 27, 2009, following a meeting with Barack Obama.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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(Newser) – Citigroup posted its first profitable quarter in 18 months today, thanks in no small part to $45 billion in bailout funds and changes to accounting rules, Bloomberg reports. The company posted a $1.6 billion profit, up from a $5.1 billion loss last year. The company reported a loss per share of 18 cents, beating estimates of a 32-cent loss.

The company would have posted a sixth-straight losing quarter if not for a new accounting rule that lets companies record declines in the market value of its debt as unrealized gain, notes Bloomberg. That change gave the company a $2.5 billion boost. Its investment banking group also turned profitable.