Man on the stand: Goldman Sachs CFO David Viniar has had some ‘splainin’ to do, as he did here before the Senate Investigations Subcommittee last April.
If there’s one person we’d want to see grill Goldman Sachs bigwigs about certain fishy pre-financial-meltdown practices in which they apparently engaged, such as their failure to give useful details about their vaguely defined and even less specifically tracked derivatives, it’d be Brooksley Born. Thankfully, that’s exactly who showed up “skeptical” and ready with some questions during a special panel investigation on Thursday. —KA
“I am very skeptical that you really can’t measure these derivatives revenues and profits,” said Brooksley Born, former Commodity Futures Trading Commission chairwoman and now a member of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. “I urge you to provide us with the information we are asking for; it’s been about six months.
“You don’t give it to your regulators; you don’t give it to the market in financial reports; you don’t give it in any forum in which your customers can see what you’re making, and you are refusing to give it to us,” she said. “I hope very much to see it soon.”
David Viniar, Goldman Sachs Group’s chief financial officer, repeatedly argued that the Wall Street powerhouse (GS 131.10, -0.04, -0.03%) doesn’t break out derivatives profits from the rest of its profits.