In case you missed it:
Goldman Sachs Goldman to make record bonus payout:
A lack of competition and a surge in revenues from trading foreign currency, bonds and fixed-income products has sent profits at Goldman Sachs soaring, according to insiders at the firm.
Staff in London were briefed last week on the banking and securities company's prospects and told they could look forward to bumper bonuses if, as predicted, it completed its most profitable year ever. Figures next month detailing the firm's second-quarter earnings are expected to show a further jump in profits. Warren Buffett, who bought $5bn of the company's shares in January, has already made a $1bn gain on his investment.
The biggest profits in their history and while they are paying back TARP funds, I note this from The Real Screw Job - AIG Used as Funnel of U.S. Taxpayer Money, Goldman Sachs received $2.5B in CDS payouts from AIG.
From Baseline Scenario:
For the pessimists, the phoenix-rising-from-the-ashes profitability of the big banks is a direct result of massive government aid in the form of cheap money, liquidity programs, and let’s not forget the bailout of AIG; it’s also the result of reduced competition resulting from the consolidation of Bear Stearns into JPMorgan, the failure of Lehman, and the weakened state of Citigroup and Bank of America/Merrill. So the government bought a partially healthy banking sector (the big question is what Citi and B of A will report) with public funds, the few winners (Goldman, JPMorgan) are more powerful than ever, and the government is hoping to get an anemic regulatory reform package through Congress in exchange.
Pretty amazing isn't it? To have the world at risk of complete collapse, meltdown, how the U.S. taxpayer must pour trillions of their own money to put out the fire immediately, only 8 months later to have one institution report their biggest profits ever?