We are now seeing the third round of bailouts for Citigroup, after the US government already has taken a 36 percent stake in the bank. This makes the US government the largest shareholder of a bank, whose second largest shareholder is Saudi Prince Alaweed Bin Talal.
Currently American taxpayers are in hock for 45 billion dollars to bailout Citigroup, while the Treasury, the FDIC and the Federal Reserve cover 90 percent of Citi's 335 billion dollar losses. The numbers are scary and since most financial experts predict that the bailout isn't done yet, is likely to only be the beginning. It's unclear how much US taxpayer will have to go into debt in order to bail out Citigroup.
But in bailing out Citigroup, the American taxpayer isn't simply bailing out Prince Alaweed Bin Talal's bank, who actually increased his stake at the end of 2008 when investors were jumping overboard, or protecting the investment of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. We're also engaging in a 300 billion dollar plus bailout of Sharia finance. Because Citigroup's Islamic Banking operation represents the world's leading of Islamic loans and Sukuk bonds.
Citigroup pioneered the big bank embrace of Sharia finance back in the 90's. Citigroup co-launched the Dow Jones Sukuk bond index in 2006. Citigroup continues to help bring Sharia finance across the world with its wholly owned subsidiary, the Citi Islamic Investment Bank.