Citi’s commitment to oil giant ExxonMobil was reinforced recently when the US bank was named as the lead advisor on its $60 billion merger with Pioneer, one of the biggest oil deals for decades. This deal is bad for the planet as it will see Exxon double down on oil production. The merger no doubt earned Citi tens of millions of dollars in fees and it follows a long history between the bank and Exxon.

Number 1 buddies

Exxon is Citi’s number 1 fossil fuel client: since 2016 Citi has pumped $15.3 billion into Exxon. During this time, Citi has been a champion for Exxon despite its controversies. In 2016, with investigations in the US underway after it emerged that Exxon scientists knew about the harms of climate change but the oil operator chose to cover it up, Citi pumped $3.2 billion into Exxon. By 2020, when the full extent of Exxon’s destructive role in delaying the world from addressing climate change became apparent and its extraction of oil in Guyana began to ramp up, Citi had pumped almost $11 billion into Exxon. Now that’s what you call sticking up your (dubious) mates.

Credit cards and more!

Citi also issues Exxon’s customer credit card in the US to ensure its name is up there in lights with Exxon’s oily branding. Makes you wonder why retailer Costco and American Airlines would want their credit cards issued by such a dirty bank.

Utter hypocrisy

But the real hypocrisy about Citi is that it tells its shareholders that it wants “to engage with our clients to help finance their transition”. The problem is that there is NO transition when it comes to a client like Exxon. The oil operator has been really clear that it has no interest in renewable energy, preferring to increase investment in oil production and unproven technologies like carbon capture. Is Citi pulling the wool over its shareholders eyes? Should someone tell the Securities and Exchange Commission??

A marriage made in hell

Citi says it wants a meaningful engagement on climate while staying married to Exxon. We know this relationship with Exxon suits Citi well – as the second biggest fossil fuel funder in the world, the biggest US coal funder, the biggest foreign funder of fossil fuel expansion in Africa and one of the biggest fossil fuel funders in the Amazon. No wonder these two oil, gassy love birds got ‘married’ at a wedding ceremony in San Francisco recently – officiated by the Devil himself!