Todd Thomson's ouster as chief executive of Citigroup's wealth management arm was provoked in part by his relationship with CNBC personality Maria Bartiromo, who accompanied him aboard the company jet to several client and bank-sponsored functions, the New York Times reported today (Tuesday), citing unnamed sources. The newspaper indicated that an internal clash occurred at CNBC when Charles Gasparino, an on-air editor, learned that Thomson's job was in jeopardy after top management at Citigroup had examined Thomson's conduct, specifically in regards to Bartiromo. Gasparino, the Times said, informed Jonathan Wald, head of news programming for the cable network, who told him to pursue the story. However, when Bartiromo learned of Gasparino's reporting, she complained to Wald, and Gasparino never reported on the matter. "Some within the network say Ms. Bartiromo's role in the story prevented it from being fully reported," the Times wrote. But, in an interview with the newspaper, Wald insisted that the story did not air "because it was not adequately sourced." Nevertheless, even after Thomson's resignation was announced, no CNBC reporter or anchor mentioned Bartiromo's link to his dismissal, the Times observed.
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