UPDATE 1-Citigroup may sell OneMain lending business late this year- CEO

Thu May 29, 2014 10:37am EDT

(Adds step taken toward sale, description of business)

NEW YORK May 29 (Reuters) - Citigroup Inc may finally be able to sell its OneMain Financial personal loan business later this year, CEO Mike Corbat said on Thursday.

Corbat, speaking at an investor conference in New York, said Citigroup could dispose of the company through an outright sale to a private equity firm, a public stock offering, or a combination of the two, if prices are good.

Citigroup, the third biggest U.S. bank by assets, has wanted to unload the business since shortly after the financial crisis but has been unwilling to let it go for the prices offered, he said.

Earlier this year, Citigroup had OneMain take a step toward independence by issuing some $760 million in securities to establish "arm's-length funding," Corbat said.

OneMain makes subprime loans to individuals and is profitable but does not fit the company's strategy, he said. (Reporting by David Henry in New York; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Jonathan Oatis)