At least one Wall Street investment house is stepping up to help some of the people who’ve been squeezed by the financial crisis that Wall Street caused.
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Goldman Sachs – once considered the “star of the Street” before it crashed in a pile of greed and had to be salvaged by a multibillion-dollar bailout from you and me – is this angle of mercy. It has announced a new loan program to assist folks who lost money because of their investments with Goldman. What an altruistic gesture! Before we give the bank a big gold star, however, let’s note that regular folks do not qualify. For example, maybe you lost a chunk of your retirement money because of the firm’s collapse. Sorry, but no loan for you.
No, no – this beneficent program is strictly reserved for Goldman’s own senior bankers! These special ones were paid millions of dollars in the golden years, and they invested wads of that cash in a couple of the bank’s elite investment pools. One of the perks of being a high-ranking Goldman Sacher was that you got access to those very profitable funds.
But – O, cruel fate! – even these have plummeted in value, and many of the bank’s 100 top executives are reported to be down to their last $5 million. Given their gilded lifestyles, this leaves them scrambling to meet payments. One example of their cash crunch is that they now are having to pay their taxes on fat bonuses that they were paid early last year. Back then, they were riding high, and they thought the party would never end, so they spent all of their bonus money on assorted toys. That means they don’t have enough money today to cover their tax obligations.
I know how badly you must feel for them, but not to worry, for Goldman is galloping to their rescue with loans ranging up to hundreds of thousands of dollars each. See, Wall Street takes care of its own – even if they have to use our bailout dollars to do it.
“Goldman Offers Loans To Stretched Employees,” The New York Times, March 17, 2009.