Technology has helped create ever larger institutions which have become inhumane, without compassion or pity, not concerned with the people who suffered greatly because of the actions of banks like Goldman Sachs that lead to the financial meltdown
As Wall St. Firms Grow, Their Reputations Are Dying
By Steven M. Davidoff - DealBook
Reputation is dead on Wall Street.
This is not to say that financiers and financial institutions still do not commit foolish misdeeds. Rather, so long as the authorities do not find law-breaking, the penalties are few.
The list of examples is long.
Former directors of Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns still serve on the boards of public companies, and one, Jerry A. Grundhofer, a former director of Lehman, is on the Citigroup board. Traders responsible for disastrous mortgage bets have easily found lucrative jobs in finance.
Or take Daniel H. Mudd, who not long after being ousted as chief executive of Fannie Mae was named chief executive of the Fortress Investment Group. At Fortress, Mr. Mudd has been paid a salary and stock options worth more than $30 million in the last two years. This was despite the failure of Fannie Mae while he was at the helm, an event that wiped out almost all shareholder value and has cost the federal government more than $90 billion.
And Wall Street itself seems to be bearing little pain. Sure, the banks have been flogged in Congress and are subject to the Dodd-Frank Act, but it does not seem that their financial clients are avoiding doing business with them. This includes Goldman Sachs, which has been pilloried for ostensibly taking short positions against its own clients.
It was not always the case.
During the Great Depression, Goldman Sachs was caught up in a scandal involving the Goldman Sachs Trading Corporation. The taint of the scandal drove away business for more than a decade and made the firm extremely focused on reputation.
Today, both people and institutions seem to bear no penalty for their actions. They are rewarded.
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