Last month's sudden departure of Deborah McWhinney, Citigroup's head of personal banking and wealth management unit, raises questions for brokers, advisors, customers and the firm's executive management team as the company seeks to fill the void. It also raises questions about Citi's strategy for serving the highly coveted mass-affluent market.

McWhinney, who joined Citigroup in March 2009 after a successful run atop Schwab Institutional, will take over as head of Citi's Global Digital Merchant Acquiring Group, according to an internal memo. McWhinney now reports to Paul Galant, CEO of Citi's Global Enterprise Payment (GEP) group.

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