New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has opened an investigation of eight major banks, to find out whether they gave misleading data to rating agencies to pump up the ranking of mortgage-backed securities. The companies in the crosshairs are Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, UBS, CrÃ©dit Agricole and Merrill Lynch (aka Bank of America).
Bond markets slammed Goldman Sach this week, making the firm pay more for cashizzle then even the bailed-out Citigroup. Goldman’s yield rose to 2.79 percentage points over Citigroups’ 2.29. At the end of March, before the legal and regulatory headaches began, Citigrouop’s spread was wider than Goldman’s by .45 percentage points. Higher yields on debt usually indicate a higher risk of default or other negative credit events. Concerns continue to mount over how long and how deep the firm will be tainted by the SEC’s civil lawsuit and the investigation by federal prosecutors, and what other skeletons the scrutiny might shake out.
Here’s more proof that the people who probably should have known how they were making all that housing bubble money never did—even those who personally made tens of millions off of it. The Business blog at The Atlantic notes a quote Hank Paulson, former Goldman Sachs CEO and Treasury Secretary, gave Newsweek: “I didn’t understand the retail market; I just wasn’t close to it.”
Goldman-Sachs read my post, “Goldman Rips Off Non-Profits, Endowments, Foundations, And Charities” about a conversation I had with a Goldman-Sachs trader where he boasted about ripping off charitable organizations with excessive fees, and they’re hopping mad. Here is the lovenote sent by Melissa Daly, VP of Corporate Communications: