All the big financial stocks are selling off on the news that Goldman Sachs (GS) is being charged by the SEC for subprime mortgage fraud.
The SEC itself says the charges are part of a broader investigation.
So does this mean that more charges against other banks are inevitable?
Remember, Goldman Sachs isn’t being charged for selling CDOs. It’s not even being charged for selling CDOs that were structured by a hedge fund (Paulson & Co.).
It’s being charged for something very specific, that its employee Fabrice Tourre mislead investors about who selected the assets, and what direction he was betting on.
Unless teh SEC can fine a Fabrice Tourre at Barclays (BCS), Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), Morgan Stanley (MS), and JPMorgan (JPM) then they’ll probably be unlikely to pull the trigger.
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