The SEC charged Goldman Sachs and one of its executives with fraud today in a risky offshore deal backed by subprime mortgages that cost investors more than a $1 billion. The civil fraud charges were the first to be filed against the Wall Street investment banking titan at the center of multiple inquiries into the causes of the global financial meltdown.
Goldman said in a news release: "The SEC’s charges are completely unfounded in law and fact and we will vigorously contest them and defend the firm and its reputation."
Behind the story
In a five-month investigation published last year in the Observer and elsewhere, McClatchy Newspapers detailed how Goldman peddled more than $40 billion in securities backed by at least 200,000 risky home mortgages, but never told the buyers it also was secretly betting that a sharp drop in U.S. housing prices would send the value of those securities plummeting.
Read the entire, illuminating series, a finalist for this year's Pulitzer Prize, at McClatchy's site here.