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Citigroup says prepared for trading after power outages

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation - Tue, 30 Oct 2012 22:08 GMT
Author: Reuters
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By David Henry

Oct 30 (Reuters) - Citigroup Inc said it was ready for markets to re-open on Wednesday despite power outages in the waterside neighborhood where it is located and flood damage in a building where its investment bankers work.

"We are prepared for the re-opening of the markets, and will utilize our back-up locations to ensure continuity of operations until our staff can return to our Lower Manhattan offices," the company said in a statement on Tuesday afternoon.

Earlier in the day, the company said that its building with trading floors at 390 Greenwich Street, which is a short distance north of the World Trade Center site, was running on power from a generator and was expected to be accessible in the next two days.

An adjacent skyscraper, where investment bankers work, sustained minor flooding from Hurricane Sandy and had no power, according to a Tuesday memo to employees that was seen by Reuters. That building is also expected to be accessible in the next two days, the memo said. It is also used by Citigroup's transaction services unit, which caters to corporations and governments around the world.

The memo said damage assessments were continuing.

A building at 111 Wall Street, which is the bank's third major facility in downtown Manhattan and is used by some of the company's back-office processing and human resources staff, had severe flooding and will be out of commission for several weeks, according to another staff memo sent later on Tuesday.

Citigroup has a back-up trading floor in New Jersey that it planned to use as of Sunday, two sources at the bank said on Sunday.

Global investment banks generally have large trading desks in Europe and Asia that can help carry work loads for one another.

Bank branches were still closed in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Delaware, according to the memo. The bank said it was trying to open branches in Washington, D.C., Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts on Tuesday afternoon.

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