Goldman Sachs

Will Barclays' CEO Surprise Us?

Author: 
John Fullerton

Like Lloyd Blankfein with the Abacus fiasco, and Jamie Dimon with “the whale trade,” Barclays CEO Bob Diamond has an unparalleled opportunity to surprise us this week during his appearance before Parliament to explain the most recent financial scandal involving the systematic manipulation of LIBOR, the benchmark interbank lending rate upon which hundreds of trillions of dollars of financial transactions are priced, over several years. Will Diamond seize the opportunity missed by both Blankfein and Dimon to emerge as the first true financial statesman of the modern global banking crisis?

Financial Statesmanship for a New Economy

Author: 
John Fullerton

Reactions to departing Goldman derivatives salesman Greg Smith’s “Why I am Leaving Goldman Sachs,” which appeared as an op-ed in the New York Times last week, have ranged from the hyperbolic — Robert Reich’s “If you took the greed out of Wall Street, all you’d have left is the pavement” — to the addicted — Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s “we need their taxes” (my paraphrase).

Both views are problematic, as I will address. But first, some historical context:

The Wisdom of Melville

Author: 
John Fullerton

"If your banker breaks, you snap."  -  Herman Melville, Moby Dick

During the summer between the day I resigned from JPMorgan after eighteen years, and the horror of witnessing 9-11 up close and personal, I joined a couple of friends on their fifty foot sailboat in an attempt to sail across the Atlantic Ocean.  What better time to read Moby Dick, I thought.

One thousand miles into the journey, about a third of the way to England, we were struck by a humpback whale, destroying our rudder and leaving us floundering on the Atlantic.

Taming the Casino

Author: 
John Fullerton

Bloomberg View has joined its Wall Street customers in coming out against the Financial Transactions Tax proposed by Germany and France, and recommended by the European Union, declaring it politically unfeasible while undermining economic growth.  

Presuming for a moment that the politically unfeasible can become reality when good ideas are pursued in a real democracy, it is important to clarify the sound purpose and likely impact of a Europe-wide or, ideally, universal Financial Transactions Tax. 

Commodities are Different (in a "Full World")

Author: 
John Fullerton

Foreign Policy’s recent “How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis” reflects the dangerous, myopic thinking all too prone to “blame Wall Street” that is a natural consequence of Wall Street’s appalling, anti-social behavior in recent years.

Commodities are Different (in a "Full World")

Foreign Policy’s recent “How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis” reflects the dangerous, myopic thinking all too prone to “blame Wall Street” that is a natural consequence of Wall Street’s appalling, anti-social behavior in recent years.

The $4 Billion Pen

 

Matt Taibbi’s “The People vs. Goldman Sachs” which appeared in Rolling Stone this week is a good and damning piece.  In his latest attack on Goldman ("the Vampire Squid"), Taibbi likens the scathing 650 page bipartisan Levin-Coburn report on the Financial Crisis to Upton Sinclair’s Jungle and calls for the Justice Department to bring criminal charges against Goldman, knocking 6% - more than $4 billion - off the firm’s market value.  Not a bad day’s work.

The $4 Billion Pen

Author: 
John Fullerton

 

Matt Taibbi’s “The People vs. Goldman Sachs” which appeared in Rolling Stone this week is a good and damning piece.  In his latest attack on Goldman ("the Vampire Squid"), Taibbi likens the scathing 650 page bipartisan Levin-Coburn report on the Financial Crisis to Upton Sinclair’s Jungle and calls for the Justice Department to bring criminal charges against Goldman, knocking 6% - more than $4 billion - off the firm’s market value.  Not a bad day’s work.

Goldman and Facebook: Who's Using Who?

 

I sure got that one wrong.

At the end of my 2009 year end letter to Lloyd Blankfein, Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, the third in an exchange that took place during the depths of the financial crisis, I predicted that Goldman clients would begin to defect, either of their own volition, or because their own clients would force them to.  I predicted “civil war (inside Goldman) could break out after Goldman loses the Facebook IPO for one reason alone: the Goldman Sachs brand.”

Oops.

Goldman and Facebook: Who's Using Who?

Author: 
John Fullerton

I sure got that one wrong.

At the end of my 2009 year end letter to Lloyd Blankfein, Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, the third in an exchange that took place during the depths of the financial crisis, I predicted that Goldman clients would begin to defect, either of their own volition, or because their own clients would force them to.  I predicted “civil war (inside Goldman) could break out after Goldman loses the Facebook IPO for one reason alone: the Goldman Sachs brand.”

Oops.

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