Goldman Sachs shares have risen about 80 percent under CEO Lloyd Blankfein, beating many of its Wall Street competitors but lagging the market as the financial crisis upended the industry.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday Blankfein is preparing an exit by the end of the year. The stock is up 1.4 percent Friday after taking an initial hit on the report.
Blankfein became chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs on June 28, 2006. The company's shares are up nearly 80 percent during his tenure through midday Friday versus the S&P 500's roughly 120 percent return.
Goldman's stock outperformed many of its competitors except for J.P. Morgan Chase, which rose about 190 percent during the same time period. Bank of America and Citigroup declined by more than 30 percent and 84 percent, respectively.
Blankfein is widely lauded for steering Goldman through the 2008 financial crisis.
Lloyd's financial "stewardship, the thought, the risk management … was brilliant [during the crisis]," William Cohan, author and CNBC contributor, said on CNBC Friday.
Goldman Sachs declined to comment.