The U.S. Department of Justice is pressing for Citigroup’s main banking subsidiary to plead guilty to a felony tied to the rigging of foreign-exchange markets, according to two people briefed on the matter.
Bloomberg News reports that Citigroup has countered with an offer that the plea come from a subsidiary that’s smaller than the Citibank NA unit, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private negotiations.
An agreement could come as soon as May and the related fine probably won’t exceed $1bn, one of the people said. Two other people said the Justice Department is weighing all options and hasn’t decided on a particular entity.
A guilty plea by its main banking unit might threaten Citigroup’s ability to operate certain types of businesses through that subsidiary, which accounted for more than 70% of the firm’s revenue last year.
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