Important to note given the earlier questioning that securities firms have a fiduciary duty to their clients when acting as an underwriter, but not as a market maker, which is the role Goldman Sachs played in many of the transactions at the heart of the hearing.
That said, the distinction is likely lost on many people who witnessed the inability of former Goldman execs to state plainly that they had a duty to act in the best interests of their clients.
Again, I return to that theme as central for Goldman and its fight to retain the trust of its clients. In speaking to those clients through the years, few truly believe that Goldman or most other big investment banks have their interests at heart in every one of the transactions they undertake.
A fortune 500 company that hires Goldman to advise it on a merger knows that another part of Goldman may be short that company's stock and another part of Goldman may be competing with it to buy a business it may want to own.
But, few tell me they would no longer hire Goldman when they need the firm given its prominence in many areas of the capital markets.
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