Citicorp Stock Dips Below $10 a Share

Shares of Citicorp, the nation's largest bank fell below $10 on Tuesday for the first time in 11 years.

"It's an important level from the psychological point of view," said bank analyst Carole Berger of C.J. Lawrence Inc., New York. "But I'm frankly a little surprised this didn't happen earlier, because the other multinational banks have been weak."

Citicorp closed down 25 cents to $9.75, on volume of 1.2 million shares. The New York money-center's stock last sold below $10 in November 1980.

The stock slipped several notches in October after Citicorp announced an $885 million third-quarter loss and omitted its dividend. It then traded in the $10-to-$11 range for seven weeks before Tuesday's new love.

"It did not seem to want to move below $10," said Mark Alpert, bank analyst at Bear, Stearns & Co., New York.

"This tends to be the time of year when weak stocks get weaker," noted Joseph H. Barthel of W.H. Newbold's Son & Co., Philadelphia.

"Seasonal tax-selling is part of it," he said. "But in this case you probably have institutional holders with reports due at yearend whose charters prevent them from holding stocks that don't pay dividends.

"And having moved through several important support zones," Mr. Barthel said, "the stock may retest some very old lows."

Ms. Berger and several other bank industry analysts believe the stock could reach $6.

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