Goldman Sachs names David Solomon as new president

Toby Graves
March 13, 2018

The announcement comes amid speculation over the future leadership of Goldman following a Wall Street Journal report Friday that current chief executive Lloyd Blankfein could retire as soon as this year.

On Monday, Goldman Sachs announced that co-COO Harvey Schwartz would be retiring, setting the stage for co-COO David Solomon to succeed CEO Lloyd Blankfein.

Leon expects that Goldman will make a formal announcement before the end of the year on a new chief executive, probably Solomon.

Solomon and Schwartz were named co-chief operating officers and presidents in December 2016, following the departure of then-COO Gary Cohn to the Trump administration.

Blankfein, 63, is one of the longest-serving CEOs at a bulge bracket bank having been in the role for 12 years. Although this was already hinted at by The Wall Street Journal last week, Goldman Sachs seemingly confirmed it Monday morning.

David Solomon is the the frontrunner at Goldman Sachs. They also cited Solomon's diverse background and investment-banking expertise as benefits, and said Goldman's transparency in laying out the succession plan will help insiders at the firm focus on doing business instead of wondering who's going to take over as CEO.

The anticipated elevation of Solomon, a Goldman veteran who moonlights under the name DJ D-Sol, spinning electronic-dance music, marks a strategic shift for the bank. "I want to thank Harvey for all he's done for the firm", Blankfein said.

KBW sees Solomon as "a capable leader", with significant experience running the investment bank, and a longstanding member of Goldman's management committee. The firm's fixed-income trading business, which produced Schwartz, is coming off its worst year in more than a decade.

"We saw the future as more of an investment-banking future than a securities or trading future and that favored Solomon", Charles Peabody, a Compass Point Research & Trading analyst, said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. Solomon is also a member of the board of trustees at Hamilton College, from which he graduated in 1984 with a degree in government.

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