Citigroup To Waive Fees and Offer Assistance To Coronavirus-Impacted US Customers | Credit Raters

Citigroup To Waive Fees and Offer Assistance To Coronavirus-Impacted US Customers

09 Mar 2020
Approx Reading time: 3 minutes
  • Starting Monday, 9th March 2020, those customers and small businesses that have been financially impacted by the ongoing coronavirus threat would be assisted by Citigroup in some ways.
  • The group has announced a waiver of monthly fees applied to consumer bank accounts and penalties applied to certificates of deposit.
  • Experts have cautioned that a further spread of the virus could result in further damage to markets, and this may cause many people to become delinquent on their debt.
  • Analysts predict more financial service providers may also start offering specialized assistance to customers that have been financially impacted by the coronavirus.
An announcement was made by Citigroup Inc on Friday that some fees would be waived for those consumers and small businesses in the US that had been adversely impacted due to the ongoing coronavirus threat, in addition to further assistance. From today onwards, customers in the US that have been impacted are eligible to get a waiver on monthly fees applicable to their bank accounts as well as penalties charged on certificates of deposit. Hardship programs and additional support for small businesses will also be provided, such as the availability of an extended banker, according to the announcement. According to Anand Selva, who is the Cheif Executive at the US Consumer Bank of Citi, the coronavirus threat is evolving at a rapid pace, and Citi wants to reaffirm its customers that the bank is prepared to provide any assistance that customers may require to deal with its impact. So far, the coronavirus has spread to over 21 states in the country. As many as 566 cases have been reported, and 22 people have lost their lives to the virus in the US, as per data reported on Monday by Worldometers. The total number of cases has surpassed 111,000 around the world, while over 3,800 have reportedly lost their lives to it in over 90 countries. There have been growing concerns around the globe by experts about the impact of reduced consumer spending on markets, as some major economies have already slowed down due to the virus. Karen Petrou, Federal Financial Analytics’ managing partner, has said that if ongoing virus impact continues to result in cancellation of events and travel plans, and closure of businesses, many Americans would be plunged into delinquency on their outstanding debt as they would have no alternative choice. Petrou reaffirmed that, if the current liquidy crises were not quickly resolved, it could lead to solvency issues. There have been discussions at an official level about whether banks and other financial service providers should be asked to implement forbearance programs in an effort to assist cash-crunched customers as they deal with the crippling financial impact of the coronavirus. A similar response has been encouraged by the Federal Reserve in the past during natural disasters such as Hurricane Michael, and also when the government was shut down.

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Akbar Lashari

Akbar is a talented news editor who follows the consumer finance industry closely and has written for many famous news & educational websites such as Forbes.