Back in 2009, Goldman Sachs Chief Financial Officer David Viniar, whose face may not be as recognizable to you as that of Lloyd’s but whose voice you’ve likely found just as if not more soothing each time you hear it during the firm’s earnings calls, decided he was ready to move on after a three-plus decade long career with The Firm. Normally, that would have been just fine; people would have wished Viniar all the best as he happily waved good-bye to all his colleagues and friends from the gondola lift made of fluffy clouds and money that transports all Goldman Sachs executives to retirement.
Unfortunately for DV, however, it was around the time that he started to think about leaving that Goldman hit some unfortunate rough patches that included “a civil fraud suit by the Securities and Exchange Commission over marketing of mortgage-related securities, a federal criminal probe on the same matter, and a civil suit brought by a hedge fund that bought a Goldman CDO.” And while other higher-ups– no names: Jon Winkelried– would have thought nothing of abandoning Lloyd in his time of need or what kind of message it would have sent that a top official was calling it quits, David “Bones” Viniar is a little more loyal than that. Lot more loyal in fact (“He’s so loyal he’s only going to do anything when the timing is appropriate,” one person said at the time, adding that “David will do whatever the firm asks of him”) and so he stayed. Stayed by Lloyd’s side during his darkest hour. Stayed when the Goldman needed him most. And although some might have hoped he’d forget about wanting to leave; that he could be tricked into staying “just one more year” and another and another and another after that; that that good-bye he put on hold would stay on hold forever; that, if all else failed, Gary Cohn could physically prevent DV from leaving by putting him in a sleeper hold with his legs…that good-bye has come. Read more »
Some people are keeping their London-based gigs (for now) and some people are not. Read more »
Has there ever been a person in your life who in hindsight you never adequately cherished ’til he/she was gone? Who you would have treated better if you’d known that that final day together would be your last? Who you would have begged to stay? Who you assumed would return to you eventually but as the weeks, months, and years crept on you were faced with the hard realization that the next and only time you’d see them would be in your dreams, because they were never coming back? Whose permanent absence, once finally accepted, hit you like a piano pushed from the window of the top floor of a hedge fund manager’s house by a surly pet pig? Then you know how people involved with Bill Gross’s Mustache feel today. Once a daily presence on the PIMCO manager’s face, the BGM went away for a while but it was assumed not for good because how could that be? Why would that be? It didn’t seem possible. And then this happened:
Bloomberg’s Tom Keene: When does the mustache come back?
Gross: Never. My wife has finally adjusted, so it’s not coming back.
If you never got to say a proper good-bye, if you would have done things differently, if you feel like the wind’s been knocked out of you, if you can’t bear the thought of being alone tonight, join us as we light a candle in memoriam. Read more »
No one has said anything but…the standing ovation on the floor of the NYSE, the “good luck, Erin” from Jane Wells, the hints being dropped by Haines and, as one of you noticed, what appear to have been tears in EB’s eyes at the start of the program seem to suggest yes?
Update: And yes, it’s been confirmed today is the day (though Burnett will say her final good-bye Street Signs at 2PM).
Update II: Erin has gifted Haines with a pack of camel magnets, a keychain, a card she was insistent he not read on air, and Cheetos-flavored lip gloss. Read more »