JP Morgan Keeps 'Buy' on Citigroup

Analyst Catherine Murray says she's more positive on Citigroup after visiting its operations in Japan

JP Morgan reiterates buy on Citigroup (C ).

Analyst Catherine Murray says she's incrementally positive on the company's medium-term outlook after visiting Citigroup's operations in Japan. She says she believes replicating the scale of the company's Japanese operations and the market impact in other countries should create value for the company. She says, as of Monday's close, Citgroup traded at a price/book value multiple of 1.9, making it oversold relative to its risk profile. Murray notes the last time Citigroup traded near that level was the fourth quarter of 1998, when it hit 1.8 times the book value amid capital markets pressure from the Long Term Capital Mgmt (LTCM) scandal, and Russia's ruble devaluation. She maintains her $3.19 2002 earnings per share and $3.72 2003 estimates. Murray also is keeping her $43 target.

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