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Citi CEO: Bank Regulation is The "Right Direction"

Vikram Pandit
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Vikram Pandit

President Barack Obama's plans to regulate and limit the size of banks is the "right direction," said Vikram Pandit, CEO of Citi , since the company has been weeding out companies that didn't fit into the company already.

"We are quite aligned with the principals he set out," said Pandit during an interview with CNBC from Davos, Switzerland where we was attending the World Economic Forum. "We think it's generally the right direct. It shouldn't be a surprise given what we've been doing at Citi for the past few years."

The company has been shedding businesses like proprietary trading company Phibro and other hedge funds and private equity funds.

"We're 20 percent smaller in size as a bank." "We've asked ourselves are we in client business or not—which we are—do these businesses belong with us or not, and if they don't we've sold them."

Pandit echoed the concerns of other bank CEOs, like Deutsche Bank's Josef Ackermann, that if rules are set in place in the U.S. they should be global, too.

"It is an international industry. Level playing fields are really important around the world," said Pandit. "Ultimately the G20 has to come together and call us around some set of rules. And if this is the direction they want to go in, I think that direction is generally fine with us."

Pandit also said that he expects the government would sell their 27 percent stake in Citi at some point over the next year.

"They're inclined to sell the stock over time, and we're going to do everything we can to help them," he said.

UPDATE: This story has corrected the percentage of the US stake in Citi.

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