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Recession Watch: Fire Sale at Citi!

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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  • The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, controlled by the government of the United Arab Emirates, is slumming. There's speculation that the group's buying hotels in L.A. and NYC, and they've gobbled up chunks of global private equity firm the Carlyle Group and Barney's New York, and now the Authority is bailing out Citi—it's that bank on every corner, the one plugged in every network commercial break—with a $7.5 billion buy-in, supplanting stache-sporting Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal as the bank's biggest shareholder. It's lovely fodder for Bush conspiracy theorists—Bush invades Middle Eastern nations, jacking up oil prices and making Abu Dhabi rich in the process. Then Abu Dhabi bails out one of the biggest banks in America. Thanks, Bush! The latest Citi deal means almost 10 percent of the company is owned by Middle Eastern investors. Mmm, is someone cooking up a recession? Financial News

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