The Dodd-Frank Act asked Janet Yellen and her regulatory brethren-in-arms what their perfect world for banking would look like. Six years later, they have an answer, and it doesn’t include merchant banking, physical commodities or anything involving metal. To say that this would put a crimp in Goldman’s style would be an understatement, what with its $22 billion in equity investments and special law giving it and Morgan Stanley the right to push commodities around. And just wait until President Trump’s people get their say on matters Goldman. Not GS is complaining; they’ll leave that to their designated partners.
Goldman declined to comment. But a group of financial-industry trade groups issued a joint statement saying the merchant-banking proposal and others “are unfortunate and ill-considered….The regulators have made these recommendations without pointing to any evidence that these activities have ever posed any problem, and have made no attempt to assess the costs to businesses and jobs.”