After being down 0.17% in overnight trading, Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) is up 1.58% about two and half hours into the trading day. All four of the big banks are up, along with all three major indices, but Citi may have more going for it than just herd dynamics.
But before get into that, here’s a quick look at where Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C)’s peers and the markets are shaking out so far:
- Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) is up a healthy 1.36%.
- Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) is up a solid 1.18%.
- And JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) is leading the pack: up by 1.55%.
The markets are all in the green, as well, with the broader S&P 500 up by 0.27%, the narrower Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.09%, and the Nasdaq Composite up 0.35%.
Bank vs. bank
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Citi has filed suit against British banking-giant Barclays PLC (ADR) (NYSE:BCS) for $141 million, over losses Citi allegedly incurred by providing Lehman Brothers with currency-clearing services in the week between the imploding investment bank’s bankruptcy filing and its liquidation.
Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) claims it had no exposure to Lehman at that time, but provided the currency-clearing service to Barclays PLC (ADR) (NYSE:BCS) because the British superbank was trying to buy Lehman’s North American businesses in that desperate week. Per the complaint, Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) had tried to recover its money directly from Barclays, but Barclays PLC (ADR) (NYSE:BCS) refused to pay.
Foolish bottom line
For the country’s third-largest bank, $141 million isn’t much, but when you’re trying to repair a balance sheet still significantly affected by the financial crisis, every little bit helps. As such, investors might be rewarding Citi for its assertiveness in going after what it rightly feels belongs to it.
I’m a Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) investor, and I know I was happy to see this news. I feel Citi is in a crucial moment of turnaround, with CEO Michael Corbat quietly but firmly taking charge of the superbank and looking out for its long-term interests. Stories like this only bolster that happy feeling.
Of course, it could also be that this lawsuit news is having no appreciable impact on today’s share-price performance. It is a happy day in the markets, with all the big four banks up along with the three major indices. Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) may just be going along for the ride.