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According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage".[1] In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia

Friday, October 16, 2009

Goldman Sachs gambling problem

I'd be willing to bet that if Goldman Sachs had been allowed to fail, instead of being bailed out, not a sole on this planet would miss them.

Letting Goldman roll the dice

On this morning’s conference call, David Viniar, Goldman Sachs’ chief financial officer, emphasized the bank’s valuable social role. His bank made markets and provided credit when other financial players were suffering.

But is Goldman really such an indispensible financial intermediary? One look at the firm’s revenue breakdown shows that it’s more casino than anything else, and some of the markets it makes still put the economy in danger.

With markets recovering and competitors falling away, Goldman’s trading and principal investment revenue through the first nine months of the year was nearly $24 billion, on pace to break the $30 billion record set in 2007.

(Click chart to enlarge in new window)


Goldman, in other words, generates most of its revenue trading its own money and earning vigorish on customer transactions. It’s a hybrid hedge fund and bookie, with an investment bank and asset management business thrown in for good measure.

With that in mind, one is left to wonder whether Goldman was really worth saving last year. What have taxpayers received for the $50 billion worth of cash and guarantees, for giving Goldman access to the Federal Reserve as its lender of last resort?


Read the rest of the story here


Publius said...

It's almost like going to the casino with your grandfather and he gives you a thousand bucks to gamble with. You go nuts because you either turn it into ten grand or you go home even. It was not your money that you lost.

Don't forget the billions of dollars GS is making as a dealer for Treasuries. With trillions of dollars in debt issued each year now they are sucking in their commission on every Treasury they sell.

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