The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. is an American multinational finance company that engages in global investment banking, investment management, securities, and other financial services including asset management, mergers and acquisitions advice, prime brokerage, and securities underwriting services. It also sponsors private equity funds, is a market maker, and is a primary dealer in the United States Treasury security market. Goldman Sachs also owns GS Bank USA, a direct bank.
Goldman Sachs was founded in 1869 and is headquartered at 200 West Street in Lower Manhattan, New York City, with additional offices in other international financial centers.
Due to its involvement in securitization during the subprime mortgage crisis, Goldman Sachs suffered during the 2007-2008 financial crisis, and received a $10 billion investment from the United States Department of the Treasury as part of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, a financial bailout created by the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. The investment was made in November 2008 and was repaid in June 2009.
The list of former employees of Goldman Sachs who moved on to government positions includes former U.S. Secretaries of the Treasury Robert Rubin and Henry Paulson; current United States Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin; current chief economic advisor Gary Cohn; European Central Bank President Mario Draghi; former Bank of Canada Governor and current Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney and the current Prime Minister of Australia Malcolm Turnbull. In addition, former Goldman employees have headed the New York Stock Exchange, the World Bank, and major banks such as Citigroup and Merrill Lynch.
On November 16, 1981, the firm acquired J. Aron & Company, a commodities trading firm which merged with the Fixed Income division to become known as Fixed Income, Currencies, and Commodities. J. Aron was a player in the coffee and gold markets, and the current CEO of Goldman, Lloyd Blankfein, joined the firm as a result of this merger. In 1985 it underwrote the public offering of the real estate investment trust that owned Rockefeller Center, then the largest REIT offering in history. In accordance with the beginning of the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the firm also became involved in facilitating the global privatization movement by advising companies that were spinning off from their parent governments.
In 1986, the firm formed Goldman Sachs Asset Management, which manages the majority of its mutual funds and hedge funds today. In the same year, the firm also underwrote the IPO of Microsoft, advised General Electric on its acquisition of RCA and joined the London and Tokyo stock exchanges. 1986 also was the year when Goldman became the first United States bank to rank in the top 10 of mergers and acquisitions in the United Kingdom. During the 1980s the firm became the first bank to distribute its investment research electronically and created the first public offering of original issue deep-discount bond.
Robert Rubin and Stephen Friedman assumed the Co-Senior Partnership in 1990 and pledged to focus on globalization of the firm and strengthening the Merger & Acquisition and Trading business lines. During their reign, the firm introduced paperless trading to the New York Stock Exchange and lead-managed the first-ever global debt offering by a U.S. corporation. It also launched the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index (GSCI) and opened a Beijing office in 1994.
Also in 1994, Jon Corzine assumed leadership of the firm as CEO, following the departure of Rubin and Friedman.
Another momentous event in Goldman's history was the Mexican bailout of 1995. Rubin drew criticism in Congress for using a Treasury Department account under his personal control to distribute $20 billion to bail out Mexican bonds, of which Goldman was a key distributor. On November 22, 1994, the Mexican Bolsa stock market had admitted Goldman Sachs and one other firm to operate on that market. The 1994 economic crisis in Mexico threatened to wipe out the value of Mexico's bonds held by Goldman Sachs.
In 1994, Goldman financed Rockefeller Center in a deal that allowed it to take an ownership interest in 1996, and sold Rockefeller Center to Tishman Speyer in 2000.
In April 1997, Goldman was lead underwriter of the Yahoo! IPO. In 1998 it was the co-lead manager of the 2 trillion yen NTT DoCoMo IPO.
In 1999, Goldman acquired Hull Trading Company, one of the world's premier market-making firms, for $531 million.
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