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Monday, July 20, 2009

Goldman Sachs: The Great Vampire Squid Watch — July 20, 2009

Items of Interest:

Charlie Gasparino / The Daily Beast:
Goldman's Outrage -- Wall Street giant used your money to make $3.4 billion in profits.

They will never admit to this at Goldman Sachs (they don’t really fess up to much over there at the Big G) but in the fall of 2008, just after the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy gave the world a lesson in systemic risk, Goldman, the world’s greatest risk taker, was finished too.

That’s right, it was toast. Finished. Kaput. Until, that is, the firm that was built on wheeling and dealing in some of the most esoteric investments the world of high finance had ever seen, needed a government bailout to stay afloat...

Now with all the government help, Goldman is marching its way back up to $235 a share—trading at around $150 Monday—by embracing much of the same risk that nearly led to its demise. It would be nice, though, if the next time Goldman losses money taxpayers didn’t foot the bill.

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Peter Brimelow / MarketWatch.com:
Is grousing about Goldman reaching critical mass? -- Commentary: Questions are reaching the point where something might happen.

I'm amazed: Grousing about Goldman Sachs, and fury at the financial sector, is actually reaching the point where something might happen -- maybe even answers to questions we've been asking for a while...

And I'm increasingly confident all this will end with the appointment of another Pujo Committee, paralleling the one which investigated the so-called "Money Trust" in the wake of the Panic of 1907.

The consequences will be monumental.
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Goldman gets it from both right and left
The pyramid supports are giving out! Quick, everybody throw your bodies under Goldman Sachs to cushion its fall. Children first. They're the softest
— Jon Stewart

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FierceFinance:
Anger at Goldman Sachs? -- Is there any resentment simmering out in the public over Wall Street's return to big earnings and big bonuses? Bill O'Reilly, the Fox News commentator, likened Goldman Sachs bankers to pigs during a segment on his TV show. "You've got to make an example of the big boy," he said. "And this is the big boy." Jon Stewart said this: "Goldman Sachs makes $3.4 billion in profit from April to June. I guess the bailouts are working, for Goldman Sachs."

So there you have it: Criticism from the right and the left...
related:
Bill O'Reilly / The O'Reilly Factor / FoxNews:
The Cap-and-Trade Corruption -- Goldman Sachs is a goliath investment company that pays very little tax. In fact, last year in the teeth of the recession, Goldman made more than $2 billion in profit and, according to the Associated Press, paid its CEO Lloyd Blankfein about $43 million. Let me repeat: Old Lloyd made $43 million bucks in 2008. But Goldman Sachs paid zero in federal income tax. Let me repeat: Goldman made $2 billion and paid nothing in federal tax...

Also, Goldman employees gave President Obama's campaign close to $1 million. Did I mention that? ...
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Ben Cohen / The Daily Banter:
Can We Get Rid of the Goldman Sachs Influence in Government? -- The financial crisis and the Government's response has basically highlighted the fact that the U.S doesn't work as a functioning democratic country.

A functioning democracy would have held those responsible for gambling the nation's resources away, and instituted reform that made it impossible for those criminals to hijack the system again.

Instead, the Bush-Obama Administration doled out tax payers money to the devastated banks to the tune of $12 trillion, refused to hold them accountable, then made sure those responsible stayed in power and engineered a restructuring that explicitly kept them in control...
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Goldman Sachs: A Vampire On The Jugular of AmericaDarryl Robert Schoon / GoldSeek.com:
Goldman Sachs: A Vampire On The Jugular of America
-- GOLDMAN SACHS THE KING PIMP OF WALL STREET

Goldman Sachs is today the pre-eminent paper player in today’s paper markets, the king pimp of capitalism, Wall Street’s equivalent of Harlem’s fabled players of the past who lived opulently off the considerable labors of female prostitutes.

But the pimps on Wall Street have done Harlem’s pimps one better. Goldman Sachs and their fellow pimps benefit not just from the labor of women but from the labor of men as well...

When Wall Street pimps take their cut of America’s money, they’re not alone. Without the US government, the pimps of Wall Street couldn’t do you like they do. There are two hands in your pockets—and they’re not yours.
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Andrew Bary / Barron's:
Goldman Sachs Unbound -- This bank is rolling in dough again. Will some flow shareholders' way?

THE MONEY MACHINE THAT IS GOLDMAN SACHS is humming again just a few quarters after the firm's existence was briefly in doubt following Lehman Brothers' collapse...

Goldman is on course to pay each of its 29,400 employees a stunning average of $770,000 in 2009 based on money set aside so far this year. The $770,000 figure does include items like payroll taxes and health benefits, but the vast bulk is in cash and equity compensation. During 2007, its most profitable year, Goldman's compensation was about $720,000 per employee before falling about 50% last year.

No major companies appear even close to Goldman in average compensation. A highly profitable JPMorgan Chase (JPM), which competes against Goldman in areas like trading and investment banking while running a huge commercial banking operation, is on course to pay its 220,000 employees an average of $130,000 this year...
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Video / breitbart.tv:
‘Goldman Sachs Are Scum’: Analyst Says Firm Should Face ‘Financial Terrorism’ Charges -- Max Keiser: "They have basically co-opted the government; they’ve co-opted the Treasury Department; the Federal Reserve functionality; they’ve co-opted the Obama administration. Barack Obama dances to Goldman Sachs tune.” ...
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Borowitz Report:
Goldman Sachs in Talks to Acquire Treasury Department -- Sister Entities to Share Employees, Money

In what some on Wall Street are calling the biggest blockbuster deal in the history of the financial sector, Goldman Sachs confirmed today that it was in talks to acquire the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

According to Goldman spokesperson Jonathan Hestron, the merger between Goldman and the Treasury Department is "a good fit" because "they're in the business of printing money and so are we." ...
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