Like every other bank on earth, Goldman Sachs had to settle allegations that it helped create the last global financial crisis by wrapping up the mortgage equivalent of literal excrement in gold and getting them proclaimed triple-A before selling them on to investors. Of course, the top-line numbers in those settlements was a fantasy, and so it was with Goldman’s $5.1 billion deal with the Justice Department. Rather than simply having the bank fork over that money, the DoJ let it and the others pay for a portion of their sins by providing “consumer relief.” In Goldman’s case, that meant spending $1.8 billion on distressed mortgages and offering the following relief:

While Goldman has reworked loans to make it possible for thousands of homeowners to avoid foreclosure, it has also taken back more than 10,000 homes — properties it has started to sell to help offset the cost of the assistance it provides, a review of data shows….

Mr. Daly, a retired auto mechanic who has lived in the home for 22 years, said the firm that Goldman had contracted to manage his mortgage — Shellpoint Mortgage Servicing — was unwilling to consider a loan modification unless he made a $14,000 payment upfront. Then, just a few months after his wife, Susan, died of complications from cancer, he heard from lawyers for Goldman’s mortgage subsidiary — MTGLQ Investors, short for mortgage liquidation. They told him that they were pushing ahead with foreclosure….

Although Goldman began buying those loans under the auspices of a program intended to help struggling borrowers, public policy critics and homeowner advocates say the bank is getting credit for performing much like any other distressed-mortgage investor.

Goldman Sachs Forecloses on 10,000 Homes for ‘Consumer Relief’ [NYT]

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