Goldman Sachs’ chief executive Lloyd Blankfein has compared the financial sector to the Catholic Church and the Boy Scouts in a discussion over the distrust of institutions in the US.
Speaking at an event hosted by The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday morning, Blankfein was asked by the paper’s editor in chief Gerard Baker about Goldman’s reputation as ‘the vampire squid’ of capitalism, referring to the description coined by Rolling Stone journalist Matt Taibbi.
Blankfein responded that there was a distrust of institutions in the US following the financial crisis, saying finance was like “the boy scouts or the Catholic Church.”
“Someone in finance will get blamed for a predictable cycle,” he added, referring to the potential for a downturn in the economy.
Blankfein’s drawn fire in the past for drawing such comparisons. Although Goldman Sachs later said he didn’t mean to be taken seriously, in 2009 he told the Sunday Times that bankers are doing “God’s work.“
The banker was also asked about politics and noted that it was still very early in the political cycle, telling Baker: “If I were you, I’d pace myself in all this coverage … but if if it diverts you away from us I’m for it.”
He was also asked about Donald Trump, and responded: “Some of the things he says seems wacky to me.”
We will update this post as Blankfein continues speaking.
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