Lloyd Blankfein just confirmed what we already suspected: The worst financial crisis since the Great Depression was good for Goldman Sachs.
The Goldman CEO didn't mean to suggest that the notorious investment bank squeezed profits from the pain of the unemployed or anything. The Great Recession gave the investment bank an opportunity to focus on rebuilding its reputation, Blankfein told Bloomberg TV Thursday.
“We focused a lot of ourselves on trying to benefit from the crisis that happened,” Blankfein said. “We became associated with practices -- and it’s not at this point relevant whether it was overstated or not -- the point is, we were going to use that opportunity to make ourselves a better firm.”
It’s a good thing, because Goldman wasn’t behaving so well in the lead up to the financial crisis, according to critics. The bank’s actions -- including allegedly pushing a “shitty deal” and defrauding investors -- resulted in Goldman getting infamously dubbed “the Vampire Squid.”
In fact, Goldman’s reputation fell so far during the crisis that the bank is now tying promotions and bonuses to employees’ efforts to protect the bank’s good standing and win clients’ trust, according to Bloomberg.
That’s one way to take advantage of a bad situation.