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SEC says Citi has no basis to pull 'racial equity audit' proposal

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has rejected a bid by Citigroup Inc to exclude a shareholder proposal that would call for an audit and public report on the bank’s “adverse impacts” on communities of color.

SEC staff on Friday said shareholder proxy rules don’t provide a basis for Citi to exclude the proposal by activist investor CtW Investment Group from a vote at its annual meeting. The bank had argued in a December letter that it was entitled to nix the proposal because it had already addressed the concerns through reports and efforts to improve credit access for minorities, support Black businesses and home ownership and improve internal policies to become an “anti-racist institution.”

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