Democratic Senators Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren sent a letter to Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein on Friday asking for information regarding Goldman Sachs’ influence over the Trump administration.
Specifically, Warren and Baldwin are concerned about how much input Goldman Sachs employees have had over recent executive orders to roll back regulations on Wall Street, including the Dodd-Frank law that regulated banks after the financial crisis.
“The executive orders released by President Trump on Friday last week raise our concerns about the degree to which Mr. Cohn’s advice to President Trump is good for Wall Street, but bad for Americans,” said Baldwin and Warren’s letter.
“Mr. Trump released two executive orders with Mr. Cohn at his side, both from the Wall Street wish list: one promised to roll back Dodd-Frank rules put in place after the 2008 Financial Crisis, and another put in place a process that could eliminate new requirements that investment advisers act in their clients’ best interests.”
The letter cites Gary Cohn, the former COO and second-in-charge at Goldman, as a particular concern due to his position as the head of Trump’s National Economic Council.
“We are concerned that Mr. Cohn- who received an extraordinary $284 million handout from Goldman Sachs as he left his 25-year career with the firm-will be unable to develop economic policies that will help middle-class families, and will instead favour Wall Street over Main Street,” said the letter. “We hope you can provide us with information that will assuage our concerns.”
Warren and Baldwin also noted that the recent executive order was beneficial to Goldman’s stock, which is one of the best-performing stocks since Trump’s election.
“Goldman Sachs would be a major beneficiary of these efforts to deregulate the financial industry; the company’s stock rose by almost 5%, increasing your company’s market capitalisation by $4.1 billion – the day of President Trump’s announcement,” said the letter.
Goldman Sachs’ stock has rallied 33% since the election.
The two senators are asking for all communication between Cohn and Goldman regarding the draft of the executive orders.
During the election, Goldman CEO Blankfein was a supporter of Hillary Clinton and cautioned about the negative impact of Trump’s policies. He has since said he is willing to support the president, but spoke out against his recent travel ban.
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