NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The names of the Citigroup ( C ) executives who negotiated the troubled institution's bailout in November 2008 were kept from the public for fear of harassment, Bloomberg reports.

The U.S. Treasury withheld the names of those at Citigroup in order to prevent harassment like employees at American International Group ( AIG), who were pilloried for taking big bonuses, according to Bloomberg.

The names were blacked out of nearly 1,800 pages of emails and documents released to Bloomberg in response to an August 2009 Freedom of Information Act request, related to Citigroup's $45 billion bailout, the article says. Certain content from the emails was also blacked out by the Treasury, Bloomberg says.

Treasury had previously disclosed the names earlier last year, after processing a similar request by News Corp.'s ( NWSA) Fox Business Network, Bloomberg said, citing a Treasury spokesman. Citigroup had protested the disclosures at the time of the Fox request.

Citigroup in December repaid $20 billion in trust-preferred securities related to the injection of capital through the Troubled Asset Relief Program. It is now waiting for the U.S. Treasury, which owns a 27% stake in Citigroup through the conversion of TARP preferred shares to common equity, to begin exiting its stake.

Citigroup shares are up 18% so far in March, as the U.S. Treasury's lock-up period -- during which it could not sell its stake -- expired on Tuesday. The stock was trading above the $4 mark for the first time since December on extraordinary volume last week leading up to the expiration date.

Still, market observers say that, along with the Treasury's exit of Citigroup shares, the troubled institution needs to show several consecutive profitable quarters to get its stock up to the $5 level.

Shares retreated slightly on Friday. The stock was down 1.5% to $3.96 on volume of 290 million shares on Friday.

-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

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