• The Second Century (2008 – Present)

    The CIT Centennial coincided with the global financial crisis that severely impacted financial markets and posed a grave threat to all financial institutions, including CIT. The Company took dramatic measures to withstand the downturn and position it for long-term prosperity.

    An Important Milestone

    In 2008, CIT reached a milestone rare in corporate America: its hundredth anniversary. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg declared Monday, February 11, "CIT Centennial Day." That same day, CIT executives and board members, along with executives of CIT-supported civic and cultural organizations, rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange.

    A Gathering Storm

    Even as CIT celebrated its centennial, the global financial system began to falter. Triggered by a collapse in the U.S. housing market, the crisis quickly engulfed the entire financial system, leading to a global credit crunch and the worst economy since the Great Depression.

    As the crisis unfolded, CIT took definitive steps to position itself to withstand the recession.  In April 2008, CIT ceased student loan originations. In July, the company sold its home lending business as it sought to secure liquidity.
    Despite these moves, the global recession exacted a heavy toll. Seeking a more reliable source of capital and focused on building a bank centric model, CIT converted to a bank holding company in December 2008. That same month, CIT received funds through the U.S. Treasury's Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The investment enabled CIT to continue to meet its obligations and maintain its commitments to its small business and middle market clients.
    CIT faced a worsening liquidity crisis, culminating in the July 2009 denial of access to the FDIC's Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program (TLGP), which threatened to force the company into liquidation. In response, CIT secured rescue financing from a group of its bondholders, allowing the Company the time to develop and execute a plan of reorganization and win overwhelming bondholder support for the largest ever pre-packaged bankruptcy. Fewer than 40 days after entering bankruptcy, CIT became the first financial services company in history to emerge intact.


    As part of the reorganization plan, CIT named seven new independent directors.  Peter Tobin, a current Board member, was named interim Chief Executive officer beginning in January 2010, replacing Jeff Peek, who resigned following the Company's emergence from bankruptcy. Soon afterward, the Board appointed a financial services veteran, John Thain, Chairman and Chief Executive.

    In commenting on his new role, Thain summarized the opportunity facing CIT as it moves forward into its second century: "CIT's numerous market-leading positions are evidence of the resiliency of the franchise and its unwavering commitment to its customers. We will continue to work even harder to support small and mid-market businesses. CIT can and will serve an important role in the recovery of the U.S. economy and the creation of jobs."

    With Thain at the helm, the remainder of 2010 and first half of 2011 witnessed CIT's Executive Management Team and its Board of Directors making strategic moves to further position CIT as a market leader.

    In October 2011, CIT Bank (Member FDIC) was launched online (BankOnCIT.com) to offer a range of savings products including CDs, savings accounts, IRAs and custodial accounts - further diversifying the company's funding mix.


    In just a few years, the company has seen a major turnaround with a return to profitability, improved credit ratings and a significantly increased stock price from 2010. CIT bank grew its online deposits and continues to fund virtually all of the company's U.S. lending and leasing volume. Despite tepid growth in the overall economy, the company has achieved consistent commercial asset growth.

    CIT has improved its liability structure through successfully eliminating or refinancing approximately $31 billion of high-cost debt since 2010 and reduced its cost of funds. Credit metrics remain at cyclical lows and the company continues to reduce operating expenses. New internal controls were established including corporate risk management, regulatory reporting, compliance and internal audit.

    On May 30, 2013 the Federal Reserve Bank of New York terminated the Written Agreement that CIT entered into back in 2009. Following the news, CIT announced a plan to repurchase up to $200 million of common stock through December 31, 2013.


    CIT announced plans to acquire OneWest Bank, a regional bank in Southern California. The transaction will join together CIT's national middle market lending platform with OneWest's wholesale lending and branch banking franchise to create a unique provider of retail and commercial banking services. In addition, CIT acquired Direct Capital Corporation, a provider of financing to small and mid-sized businesses known for its market-leading customer service and proprietary online lending platform, and Nacco SAS, one of the largest independent full-service railcar lessors in Europe.


    CIT completes its acquisition of IMB Holdco LLC, the parent company of OneWest Bank, for $3.4 billion in cash and stock. The combined company has more than $65 billion in assets and more than $30 billion of deposits. As part of the transaction, CIT Bank merges with and into OneWest Bank, which is renamed CIT Bank, N.A. It operates an Internet banking franchise, as well as a network of 70 retail branches throughout Southern California as OneWest Bank, a division of CIT Bank, N.A.