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Morning Coffee: Citi Run by a General and His Troops

Chief executive Michael Corbat didn’t choose “his guys” to help run Citi, differing from most other bank heads who have historically favored personal loyalty over experience when appointing their lieutenants. Instead, Corbat chose to reward those whose careers have mirrored his own: Citi lifers who have shown loyalty to the company, not necessarily its top men.

Like Corbat, executives Jamie Forese and Manuel Medina-Mora, who were named co-presidents of Citi on Monday, have spent the better part of their career at Citigroup or its predecessor companies. Forese will oversee Citi’s institutional businesses while Medina-Mora will retain responsibility for the firm’s consumer banking units. Each man will manage both operations and technology functions within their respective divisions, and will report directly to Corbat, who declined to replace former chief operating officer John Havens, his predecessor’s right-hand man.

By choosing executives with experience and success in their domain, rather than promoting his own people, Corbat is embracing continuity and control, Richard Lipstein, managing director at executive search firm Gilbert Tweed Associates, told eFC.

“Major restructuring has to occur, and Corbat understands that you need to rely on people who are running things on a daily basis to make good decisions,” said Lipstein, who believes the new structure will allow Corbat to better determine where layoffs should occur.

And by not naming a new COO, instead relying on two presidents who will report directly to himself, Corbat has made his motto clear: Citi will rely on its troops, but the general is solely in charge.

Hiring Shuffle (Business Insider)

From all indications, bonus season on Wall Street has been less than spectacular. Now it’s causing employed bankers to look elsewhere, opening up a potential hiring shuffle through back channels and personal networks.

All Settled (NBC)

Bank of America has reached an $11.6 billion settlement with mortgage house Fannie Mae following years of squabbling over soured mortgages related to the bank’s nightmarish 2008 purchase of Countrywide Financial Corp.

Back on Top (WSJ)

Mark Mahaney, who was fired from Citigroup in October for his role in the botched Facebook IPO, has been hired by RBC Capital Markets as a managing director. For years regarded as one of the top technology analysts in the country, Mahaney is back covering the Internet sector.

Watered Down (WSJ)

Global regulators have agreed to ease and delay impending liquidity rules that will require banks to hold a surplus of cash in reserve to guard against a financial meltdown. Strict liquidity rules often result in layoffs, so this is good news.

Pink Slip (Bloomberg)

Richard Cookson, chief investment officer of Citigroup’s private bank, has reportedly been let go.

Hot Programming Languages (eFinancialCareers)

Java and J2EE remain the most sought-after IT skills on our CV database, followed by C++ and C#.

London Falling (Financial News)

The number of financial professionals authorized to work in the U.K. has fallen to an eight-year low.

Buzz Around the Office

Burger King Was Closed? (AP)

A Detroit man was arrested on Saturday after ordering food from a McDonald’s that he robbed in October.

List of the Day: Turning Down an Offer

Turning down a job is no easy task in the current economic environment, but sometimes you are better off saying “no.”

  1. When you don’t respect the boss.
  2. When the only appealing aspect is the pay.
  3. When you’re embarrassed to work there.

(Source: AOL)

AUTHORBeecher Tuttle US Editor

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