Inquiry panel accuses Goldman Sachs of avoiding requests for information

By Jia Lynn Yang
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 8, 2010; 10:46 AM

A panel studying the financial crisis has subpoenaed Goldman Sachs, accusing the bank of being uncooperative and dealing another blow to the firm's credibility in Washington.

The company's stock dropped 2.5 percent after members of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission said the firm was willfully avoiding requests for interviews and documents. The panel has requested information about complex financial products sold by Goldman in the run-up to the financial crisis. It also wants to learn about transactions between the firm and AIG.

Phil Angelides, chairman of the FCIC, said Goldman was deliberately trying to "run out the clock" by dumping roughly 2.5 billion pages of documents onto the commission without enough guidance on where to find the requested information.

"We're not going to let the American people be played for chumps here," Angelides said during a conference call Monday.

Goldman, in a statement, denied being difficult: "We have been and continue to be committed to providing the FCIC with the information they have requested."

It's been a rough few months for Goldman. In April, the bank faced a 10-hour grilling by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations about whether it misled customers in the selling of its mortgage-backed securities products. In the same month, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged the bank with defrauding investors.

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