Citibank has begun offering professional investment services to individual customers in its local branches through a subsidiary known as Citicorp Select Investments.
The new service will provide objective advice to clients because its investment consultants will receive flat commissions no matter what investments they sell, said Marc Pershan, regional sales manager.
Consultants also will receive part of their compensation based on the results of annual evaluations of their performances given by their own clients, he said.
Citibank branches in Buffalo and Rochester are the first in the company's national banking network to offer the investment service, he said.
The subsidiary now has five consultants based at five local Citibank branches. They spend part of their time working out of the bank's other five local branches as well, Pershan said.
The bank offers individualized service; customers will have their own consultants, he said.
Citicorp Select expects to serve mainly clients who have between $10,000 and $150,000 to invest, and sees itself competing with large brokerage houses such as Merrill Lynch and Shearson Lehman, as well as with other bank brokerages, he said.
The firm will offer a full range of investments, including mutual funds, Treasury securities, unit investment trusts, stocks, bonds, annuities, bank certificates of deposit, and money market funds, Pershan said.