Citigroup to Repay $20B of Bailout

Citigroup, the last large bank left with the Treasury designation of "exceptional assistance," has reached an agreement with the Treasury Department and regulators on how it will repay $20 billion in Troubled Asset Relief Program funds. The bank will sell $20.5 billion of capital and debt and $17 billion of common stock, while the U.S. Treasury will concurrently sell as much as $5 billion of the common stock it owns. According to Citigroup, the company will also substitute "substantial common stock" for cash compensation. The returned funds will contribute to the $136 billion already returned by bailed-out banks, including $45 billion from Bank of America Corp., which exited from TARP last week. This big-ticket payback comes just in time for President Obama's meeting with chiefs of the nation's biggest banks on Monday, where he will encourage the banks to help speed up economic recovery by providing more loans to homeowners and small banks. “We have to get them off the sidelines and get them to play a more active role in our economic recovery,” said the White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel.