The Financial Times interviewed Senator Carl Levin, whose report contained a great deal of information pointing to what at a minimum can be called bad faith dealing by Goldman. Matt Taibbi has argued in his characteristic forceful manner that Goldman execs clearly perjured themselves in their testimony.
Keep your champagne corked. The DoJ has been missing in action for so long I can’t imagine that they will actually put in an appearance, particularly on Goldman, but I’d be delighted to be proven wrong.
From the FT:
Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate investigative subcommittee, said there was “real hope” law enforcement authorities would act on his panel’s report accusing Goldman Sachs of misleading investors and Congress…
Eric Holder, attorney-general, said this month the justice department was looking at the report “that deals with Goldman”.
The possibility of more legal and regulatory issues at the bank has weighed on its stock in recent weeks. Dick Bove, analyst at Rochdale Securities, wrote last week that “pressure on the justice department to bring a criminal lawsuit against Goldman [appeared to be] building to a high pitch”….
The senator was confident officials were taking it seriously. “There’s real hope here that there’s going to be a good scrub by a number of law enforcement entities, so I am not pessimistic about this.”
Given that the Administration has been in “public be damned” mode from the outset, I doubt that “pressure” weight much into their calculus. Levin pointedly took no sides on the Taibbi perjury issue, but said that fines alone were insufficient, that the banks needed to admit they were guilty. Of course, that is precisely what they do not want to do, since that would pave the way for private litigation.
Not surprisingly, Goldman is still keeping up its “doing God’s work” PR:
Goldman said: “While we disagree with Senator Levin’s statements, including with respect to the transactions, we take seriously the issues explored by the subcommittee.”
The bank added it was committed to “enhance standards for the review, approval and suitability of complex instruments” and would ”continue our work on behalf of our clients across the US and beyond in helping them grow their businesses, create jobs and help strengthen economic recovery”.