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    Regulators Fine Goldman Sachs for Risk Management Failures

    October 23, 2020

    FCA and PRA in the UK, FED in the US, and the authorities in Singapore have fined Goldman Sachs for risk management failures in connection with the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). The FCA and PRA fines are part of a USD 2.9 billion globally coordinated resolution reached with The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and its subsidiaries. 1MDB is a Malaysian state-owned development company that has been at the center of billion-dollar embezzlement allegations. Goldman Sachs International underwrote, purchased, and arranged three bond transactions for 1MDB in 2012 and 2013 that raised a total of USD 6.5 billion for 1MDB. The 1MDB transactions were approved by global The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. committees that Goldman Sachs International participated in and were booked to Goldman Sachs International.

    FCA and PRA have fined Goldman Sachs International a total of GBP 96.6 million (USD 126 million) for risk management failures connected to 1MDB and its role in three fund raising transactions for 1MDB. The investigation found that Goldman Sachs International breached a number of FCA and PRA principles and rules. Specifically, GSI failed to:

    • Assess with due skill, care, and diligence the risk factors that arose in each of the 1MDB bond transactions on a sufficiently holistic basis
    • Assess and manage the risk of the involvement in the 1MDB bond transactions of a third party that Goldman Sachs International had serious concerns about
    • Exercise due skill, care, and diligence when managing allegations of bribery and misconduct in connection with 1MDB and the third 1MDB bond transaction
    • Record in sufficient detail the assessment and management of risk associated with the 1MDB bond transactions

    The USD 2.9 billion global resolution announced included, in addition to the FCA and PRA, the US Department of Justice, the US SEC, the FED, the New York Department of Financial Services, MAS, the Attorney-General’s Chambers Office, Singapore, and the Commercial Affairs Department of the Singapore Police Force. The global resolution is separate from the USD 3.9 billion settlement reached between The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and the Government of Malaysia in August 2020. FED announced that it has fined the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. USD 154 million for the firm's failure to maintain appropriate oversight, internal controls, and risk management with respect to Goldman's involvement in a far-reaching scheme to defraud a Malaysian state-owned investment and development company, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

    Additionally, in Singapore, a conditional warning was issued to Goldman Sachs Singapore Pte, which has committed to, among other things, paying USD 122 million to the Singapore Government’s Consolidated Fund within 5 working days from the date of the Conditional Warning. MAS has directed Goldman Sachs Singapore Pte to appoint an independent external party to review the measures taken by Goldman Sachs Singapore Pte to remediate deficiencies uncovered during an inspection conducted by MAS in 2016 on the company’s risk governance and controls in relation to the 1MDB bond offerings. MAS found lapses in the company's management oversight of enterprise-wide risk, inadequate documentation of risk assessments performed for the 1MDB bond offerings, and poor corrective actions taken for staff’s non-compliance with its policies and processes.

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    Keywords: International, Europe, Americas, Asia Pacific, UK, US, Singapore, Banking, Goldman Sachs, Compliance Breach, FCA, PRA, FED, MAS

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