Here's how Charles Gasparino views Goldman Sachs:
Goldman Sachs, the Tallest Midget in the Room
By Charles Gasparino - Huffpost Business
What passes for top-notch financial journalism these days is an in depth report in the New York Times about why Goldman Sachs, the most successful of all Wall Street firms, is so modest. Amid billions of dollars in profits, a rising share price, the big Wall Street firm doesn't like to take full credit for its success.
The Times seems to think the Goldman brass, led by CEO Lloyd Blankfein, is being too modest mainly because the firm is afraid to flaunt its brilliance at making money during a time of economic hardship. The writer implores Blankfein & Co. to remember that making money is good for shareholders and taxpayers, and thus they should "take a bow. Don't hide behind the curtain" and starting telling the world how great they really are.
Far be it for me to give my "friends" at Goldman advice (we're so friendly that Blankfein once described me as a "thug"). but the last thing Goldman should be doing right now is taking a bow and telling the world it's a great firm, because when it comes down to it, Goldman isn't really a great firm.
What is it then? Well, in the words of a drinking buddy who is a frequent consumer of financial news, "Goldman is like the tallest midget in the room."
For the record, I'm not and never have been in the Goldman is the root-of-all-evil-camp, though I've gone my rounds with some of the senior people there, including its top flack, Lucas van Praag, who recently tried to deny my story on the Fox Business Network several weeks ago that the last two years of regulatory and media scrutiny into how the firm has made money, often by screwing its clients, has left Blankfein so tired and exhausted that friends say he now appears ready to leave at the end of the year.
It baffles me as to how van Praag can deny someone's impression from a private conversation (his denial in the Times follow-up story was less forceful, it should be noted). But Goldman has done dumber things, including telling the world that the firm didn't need a bailout during the dark days of the financial crisis in late 2008, all of which gets me back to the reason the firm should remain as modest as possible: Its status as a midget, albeit the largest one on Wall Street.
Read the full article here