Justice probe of Goldman goes beyond deals cited by SEC

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Goldman Sachs as 'Vampire Squid,' termed by Matt Taibi

The phrase “investors pounded Goldman Sachs” and words like brutal day for Goldman [and AIG] likely bring smiles to most Americans. This type of mirth may endure,

By Zachary A. Goldfarb and Jerry Markon

The Justice Department’s criminal investigation into Goldman Sachs goes beyond the financial transactions targeted by the Securities and Exchange Commission in the civil fraud suit brought against the firm last month, law enforcement sources said Friday.

The Justice Department probe began weeks ago and is essentially on a parallel track with the SEC investigation, the sources said. While prosecutors and investigators are focusing on some of the same mortgage-related transactions as the SEC, the sources said, the Justice Department has cast a wider net.

Investors pounded Goldman Sachs shares on Friday as it became increasingly clear that the Wall Street bank’s problems are growing. After initial news media reports about the criminal investigation, investors sent Goldman shares down 9.4 percent, or $15.04, to $145.20.

It was another brutal day for a firm that survived the worst of the financial wreckage of the past two years. Since the SEC filed its suit April 16, Goldman’s shares have lost 20 percent of their value, costing investors $20.6 billion in market value.

Goldman’s stock price remains far higher than it was during the depths of the financial crisis in fall 2008. The firm’s shares have essentially doubled in price since then as the company quickly returned to the black, seeing fewer losses on subprime mortgages than competitors and making significant trading profits with the help of government support.

Other actions pending, see Post

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