In announcing the SEC's settlement with Goldman Sachs last week, Division of Enforcement director Robert Khuzami said that the $550 million settlement should serve as a "stark lesson" to the bank and the rest of Wall Street. And while it's rare for a settlement with the Commission to include an admission of having fucked up, Goldman's conceded it'd "made a mistake," and one that Lloyd Blankfein and Co "regret." Having said that, finance professor Charles Geisst is keenly aware that this charade is a total crock and that by forcing LB and Gary Cohn to hand over whatever cash they had in their wallets on Thursday, the SEC is ensuring the bank will probably do it again, having learned nothing.
“It’s become pretty clear what Goldman has become, and this settlement is an outgrowth of it,” says Charles Geisst, a finance professor at Manhattan College and author of “Collateral Damaged,” a book on the financial crisis. “But a fine is not going to bother these people, quite frankly. A fine is like passing around the church collection plate and collecting a few extra bucks for sins.
Clearly Geisst knows that a fine ain't gonna do shit. "These people" have so much money, it won't mean anything. I think we all know what Bobby Khuzami would've sentenced Blankfein and his associates to if he'd really wanted to ensure they'd never do anything like this again, which he obviously doesn't.