Goldman’s trying to settle with the SEC on a lesser charge than fraud, say John Gapper and Francesco Guerrera of the FT. The firm is also seeking to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in fines and damages instead of billions.The lesser charge is omitting or misstating disclosures to investors. It would also reduce the threat of lawsuits and avoid the firm’s have to settle a fraud charge.
Given the evidence the SEC has presented thus far, a charge of misstatements or omissions seems more appropriate than fraud.
Given the SEC’s all-in approach to this case, it seems unlikely that the agency would settle on a lesser charge, especially so soon. This would be widely viewed as a loss.