Tag Archive for ‘CDO’
An executive at Goldman Sachs has left the firm with a bang, penning a New York Times op-ed accusing the company of increasingly putting profits ahead of clients. Greg Smith started as an intern 12 years ago and last headed a derivatives department. Not surprisingly, Goldman quickly and strongly disagreed with his take.
A federal judge in Manhattan rejected a proposed settlement between Citigroup and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over a failed security that the bank sold to investors. “If the allegations of the Complaint are true, this is a very good deal for Citigroup,” said U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff as he refused to sign off on the $285 million proposed settlement agreement.
Reporter Jesse Eisinger suggests that Goldman Sachs’ announcement last week of a plan to increase transparency and disclosure does not resolve some big questions about the investment banks’ role in financial markets. “Could there be an argument that Goldman should break up into three smaller, more focused companies?” he asks. “It would be better for the financial system, and just might lead to the self-improvement that Goldman is searching for.”
The investment banking giant, seeking to repair damage to its reputation suffered in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, said its management and board had adopted and begun implementing 39 new policies and practices that represent a “fundamental re-commitment” by the firm to “reputational excellence” and increased transparency and disclosure.
As each headline about corporate malfeasance is juxtaposed against record profits and bonuses, Americans become more jaded about the ethics of today’s business leadership. Many CEOs seem to lack the emotional awareness to deal with their own image problem.
Citigroup has agreed to pay the SEC $75 million to settle charges that the bank hid exposure to more than $40 billion in subprime CDOs. (That works out to roughly a $1 fine for every $500 worth of hidden exposure.)
Investment banking firm Goldman Sachs will pay a record $550 million penalty and reform a number of its business practices to settle SEC charges that it misled investors in a subprime mortgage product just as the U.S. housing market was starting to collapse. The settlement came on the same day that the U.S. Senate approved a sweeping financial reform bill that promises profound changes in the way Goldman and other investment banks do business.