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Cramer: Be Careful How Negative You Are On Citi

NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Jim Cramer applauds Citigroup for their increase in transactions, what he is calling the "American Express-ization" of the company.

This morning, Citigroup (C), was the third big bank to report better-than-expected earnings in the most recent quarter. For a full run-down of the results, see my colleague Antoine Gara's story here.

Key for Cramer was that Citi's quarter provided a blue print of where the company is going. He explains, "the blue print is one of having less credit risk, of avoiding markets that are difficult to fathom (i.e. Citi has little European exposure)... and really being involved in countries in Latin America and Asia that are clearly growth countries."

Cramer recommends people who think China, India, Brazil, Mexico, Singapore and Korea have the potential to experience a resurgence in growth keep their eye on Citi. It's becoming more of an international transaction company and less of a bank.

While bank earnings are off to a good start, Cramer warns that June's performance will be important in determining if the sector is still thriving or if it is beginning to fall off a cliff.

All told, Cramer says that with a tangible book value of $51.50 per share, giving up on Citi is foolish. His response to concerns that book value is inflated is to say that even if it is inflated by 20%, the stock is still a buy.

--Written by Lindsey Bell in New York.

>To follow the writer on Twitter, go to Lindsey Bell.

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