* APAC institutional deposits at all-time high
* Profit growth led by consumer banking and GTS
* Nearly half of Citi's 2010 earnings came from Asia-Pacific
(Adds details and quote from the memo)
By Michael Flaherty and Nishant Kumar
HONG KONG, Jan 27 Nearly all of Citigroup Inc's
(C.N) fourth-quarter profit came from its Asia-Pacific unit,
according to an internal memo seen by Reuters, further evidence
of the growth Wall Street and European banks are seeing in the
region, particularly in commercial banking.
Much of Citi's fourth-quarter results focused on its return
to profit for the full year, combined with a drop in bond trading
revenue that caused the bank to miss profit estimates.
Very little attention was paid to the size of the
contribution that a single region contributed to Citi's bottom
line, a fact that Asia-Pacific Chief executives Stephen Bird and
Shirish Apte highlighted in a memo on Thursday.
Quarterly net income for the region was $1.02 billion, the
memo said, or 78 percent of the bank's total, $1.3 billion
"This region was the largest contributor to Citi's global net
income for the quarter and for 2010," the memo said.
The CEOs also cited Asia's growth to the bank's Global
Transaction Services group, the part of the bank that handles
cash management and custodial services for companies.
Citi's steady Asia business resembles that of Standard
Chartered Plc (2888.HK)(STAN.L) and HSBC Holdings Plc (0005.HK)
(HSBA.L) -- two Britain-based banks that do most of their
business in Asia. StanChart's Asia CEO told Reuters in an
interview last year that 80 percent of the bank's business and
headcount was now in Asia.
Last quarter's performance was primarily driven by Citi's
Regional Consumer Bank, whose $2.1 billion in full-year net
income rose 52 percent, the memo said.
Institutional deposits for 2010 in Asia-Pacific stood at an
all-time high of $130 billion, according to the memo.
The majority of Citi's $86.6 billion in 2010 revenue was
earned outside Asia, which contributed $14.4 billion for the
year. Asia-Pacific contributed $4.6 billion, or nearly half, of
Citi's $10.6 billion in net income for the year.
The bank, which took $45 billion in U.S. bailout funds during
the financial crisis, saw its shares surge by about 50 percent
since the beginning of 2010 -- a year CEO Vikram Pandit said
would be the year the bank "turned the corner".
Fourth-quarter figures showed that while the bank returned to
profit, it still faces challenges throughout its sprawling
business, particularly with its securities and trading unit.
(Editing by Chris Lewis)