Citi adds three directors to board in response to regulatory probe

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NEW YORK - US bank Citigroup has expanded its board to 17, adding three new members, and has announced corporate governance enhancements, to appease US regulators who earlier this month pressured the bank into signing a secret regulatory deal to repair its governance.

The three external hires are Diana Taylor, Timothy Collins and Robert Joss. Internal appointments announced included a new non-executive chair of Citibank NA, head of the oversight committee for Citi Holdings and chair of the bank's internal audit and risk management committee.

Earlier in July it was reported that Citi was close to a secret deal with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to fix issues with its board, governance, asset quality, expenses management, and capital and liquidity disclosures.

Taylor is a former superintendent of banks for the New York State Banking Department and serves as managing director of fund manager Wolfensohn Capital. Collins is chief executive officer of investment firm Ripplewood Holdings, and Joss serves as dean and business professor at Stanford University.

The Financial Times reported earlier this month that a governance deal was being negotiated with the FDIC because the regulator was frustrated at the bank's losses, the slow speed with which Citi disposed of its toxic assets, and a shortage of commercial banking experience at the top.

The bank says it has appointed Jerry Grundhofer as its non-executive chairman of the board of Citibank NA, its retail-banking arm. He will also chair the bank's audit and risk management committee.

The US government agreed a 36% equity stake in Citi in February, by converting $25 billion in government aid into common shares within the bank, while Treasury stress-testing exercises in May found the bank required $5.5 billion more capital to satisfy its stress requirements.

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