The opening bell is a little less than an hour from ringing and already everyone on Wall Street is talking about Greg Smith, the former Goldman employee who wrote a scathing NYT op-ed about why he’s quitting the firm.
Bottom line (according to Smith): There is no integrity at the bank. The culture is “toxic”, and the clients no longer mean anything to Goldman.
Here’s the worst (via NYT):
It makes me ill how callously people talk about ripping their clients off. Over the last 12 months I have seen five different managing directors refer to their own clients as “muppets,” sometimes over internal e-mail. Even after the S.E.C., Fabulous Fab, Abacus, God’s work, Carl Levin, Vampire Squids? No humility? I mean, come on. Integrity? It is eroding. I don’t know of any illegal behaviour, but will people push the envelope and pitch lucrative and complicated products to clients even if they are not the simplest investments or the ones most directly aligned with the client’s goals? Absolutely. Every day, in fact.
Any hedge fund managers, institutional investors etc. want to be called “muppets”, raise your hand.