That said, I wouldn't necessarily expect to see Citigroup get wild praise for this quarter's report. Both revenue and net income came in below the average estimates, though not by large amounts. Revenue was up 10% and profits from continuing operations were up 11%, but you just really never know when the Street will collectively overreact to a one-penny shortfall.
Not surprisingly, Citigroup got a big boost from its investment banking operations this quarter. Like Goldman Sachs
In times like these, I think you can better appreciate the advantages of Citigroup's scale and scope. Net interest margins have been very troublesome for the bottom lines of purer-play banks like Commerce Bancorp
Citigroup is a sort of value-income hybrid -- a stock that, frankly, our folks at Inside Value or Income Investor could both love. And while that's good in some respects (good valuation, good income cash flow, pretty fair margin of safety), it does mean that this is not a stock that will make you wildly rich in just a short period of time. Patient investors might want to take a closer look, though, since this high-quality global operator is trading at a valuation that just doesn't seem to be presuming a whole lot of future performance.
For more Foolish financial thoughts:
Fool contributor Stephen Simpson has no financial interest in any stocks mentioned (that means he's neither long nor short the shares).