In addition to the riskier assets, Citi Holdings also oversees Citi's asset management and consumer finance segments.
The unit that operates more traditional banking operations is called Citicorp. The split is part of Citigroup's effort to return to profitability and streamline its operations.
Citi has been among the hardest hit banks by the ongoing credit crisis and recession. Analysts widely expect Citi to post a sixth consecutive quarterly loss when the bank announces first-quarter results later this month. The New York-based bank lost $8.29 billion in the fourth quarter.
The government has provided Citigroup with $45 billion to help bolster its balance sheet and additional guarantees on hundreds of billions of dollars in risky loans and investments.
Corbat will work closely with Gary Crittenden, who was recently named chairman of Citi Holdings. Crittenden had previously served as chief financial officer of Citigroup.
Before taking over as CEO of Citi Holdings, Corbat served as CEO of Citi's global wealth management unit. He has also served as head of Citi's global corporate bank and global commercial bank during his 26 years at Citigroup.
Separately, Citigroup said it named Eric Aboaf as its new treasurer. Aboaf will work with both Citicorp and Citi Holdings in managing the overall company's balance sheet.
Before being named treasurer, Aboaf served as CFO of Citigroup's institutional clients group. He joined Citigroup in 2003.