Goldman Sachs feels our pain

While announcing huge profits, the company acknowledges the sad shape of the rest of the economy. Thanks, guys!


Andrew Leonard
July 14, 2009 7:03PM (UTC)

As predicted, Goldman Sachs reported huge profits for the second quarter of 2009, coming in way over analyst expectations. Since we've been preparing for this for almost a month, the blood doesn't boil quite as quickly as it used to. But if you want to raise up a real head of steam, I recommend Glenn Greenwald's timeline of "events preceding Goldman Sachs' new 'blowout profits'" or Dean Baker's analysis of how the bank, even after paying back its TARP money, is still benefiting at taxpayer expense from an array of government bailout programs.

Or, you can just contemplate this statement from the earning announcement.

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"While markets remain fragile and we recognize the challenges the broader economy faces, our second-quarter results reflected the combination of improving financial-market conditions and a deep and diverse client franchise,” Chairman and Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein said.

We recognize the challenges the broader economy faces. Thanks for the shout-out, Lloyd! But what does that mean, really?

Just in case you'd forgotten about those challenges -- Moody's released a pithy summary today on economic prospects in the corporate sector:

"Overall, conditions remain weak globally for the consumer, primarily for the same reasons as in the U.S.," said Moody's Senior Managing Director Mike Rowan. "Rising unemployment, reduced access to credit, and negative trends in wealth due to falling asset prices all weigh heavily on most developed economies."

But nothing weighs heavily on Goldman, where $6.6 billion was set aside in the second quarter alone to compensate its 29,400 employees.


Andrew Leonard

Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21.

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Goldman Sachs Great Recession How The World Works Wall Street

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