Citi sells Phibro and ends bonus furore

The US banking giant Citigroup has sold Phibro, its oil trading business, in a deal that helps the group to avoid potential sticky questions over a $100m (£63m) bonus paid to star trader Andrew Hall.

Citi has sold Phibro to Occidental Petroleum, a Los Angeles energy company, for $250m, describing the sale as "the outcome of an evaluation of a variety of alternatives ... consistent with Citi's core strategy of a client-centred business model".

The sale ends the controversy surrounding payments to Mr Hall, who heads Connecticut-based Phibro. While the bank has sought taxpayers cash in the US, it has continued to pay him huge bonuses, reflecting Phibro's performance.

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