About a month has now passed since shares of Citigroup (C) reverse split on a one to ten basis, and judging by the early returns, management at the company may be wishing they reconsidered. While the reverse split was intended to help boost the bank's share price, the reality is that the opposite has occurred. In the four weeks of trading since May 6th (the last day that shares of C traded on a pre-split basis), shares of C are down by 15%.
Now, the last four weeks have not exactly been a bullish period for financial stocks, or for that matter any equities, but if we compare C's performance to its peers, the stock has still underperformed. Of the 24 companies in the KBW Bank Index, C is down more than any other stock (-15.2%).
Finally, while shares of C have had a rough month since their reverse stock split, shareholders can take some solace in the fact that it could have been worse. The last notable Financial sector company to have a reverse split was AIG in July 2009. In the month after AIG's 1-20 split, the stock dropped by more than 40%. Since then, however, the stock has now risen by 150%.
(Click charts to expand)