Citi's quietly building its Delta One desk in NYC

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It's nearly December and hiring in investment banks has virtually ground to a halt as everyone waits for bonuses to be paid. The exception appears to be Delta One desks. Delta One desks in NYC are still welcoming new staff, especially at Citi.

In the past month, Citi's hired three senior Delta One traders from rivals. They are: Kai Chen from UBS; David Rustico from Barclays; and Christopher Shanks from Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

All appear to have left previous jobs, suggesting Citi has compensated them for lost bonuses at ex-employers. The hires are understood to be replacements after traders left following the arrival of Tom Regazzi from UBS as Americas head of prime finance in March.

Citi isn't alone in hiring for Delta One. Deutsche Bank is also understood to have poached Rahul Shah from Barclays. Shah left Barclays in October and has yet to land elsewhere.

Delta One desks are popular as banks seek to bolster their prime brokerage businesses and increase revenues from synthetic financing without exposure to additional risk. BNP Paribas also appointed a new head of global prime trading in September this year.

Delta One can also be risky, however: both Jerome Kerviel and Kweku Adoboli worked in Delta One, and lost $7.2bn and $2bn respectively.

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