Company profile: Citigroup, a poster child for the massive government banking industry bailout of three years ago, is a global financial-services company doing business in more than 160 countries. It serves commercial and consumer clients through its regional consumer banking segment and provides investment banking, treasury, and securities services through its institutional clients group.For fiscal 2012, analysts estimate that the company will earn $4.08 per share and that will grow by 14% in 2013. Investor takeaway: Citigroup's shares, down 44% in 2011, are up 17% this year. S&P has it rated "hold," with a $35 price target, which is about a 17% premium to the current price. It reported net income of $11.3 billion, or $3.69 per share, for 2011, below analysts' consensus views. The bank's huge presence in developing countries gives it the opportunity to outdo U.S. banks in terms of loan growth. S&P's survey of analysts, found 10 "buys," six "buy/holds," seven "holds," two "weak/holds," and one "sell."
Prudential Financial (PRU) Company profile: Prudential is one of the nation's largest life insurers. It also sells asset-management products to individuals and institutions. It has a large international insurance division that operates in more than 30 countries, and is growing that fastest in Asia. Investor takeaway: Down 12% last year, Prudential's shares have gained 14% this year. S&P downgraded its rating in November to "hold" from "strong buy," but its analyst said that "longer term, we view positively (Prudential's) mix of business and its superior financial flexibility." S&P's survey of analysts' ratings found nine "buys," seven "buy/holds," and four "holds."
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