Goldman Looks For Bank Merger Partner

Wells Fargo, PNC and U.S. Bancorp are the names on the shortlist of whom Goldman Sachs might approach for a merger deal amid declining earnings and investments, according to a Fox Business report.

Goldman, despite its reputation as the bank for the ultra-wealthy and the world’s most profitable companies, has been in a rut as of late, with its market value of $59 billion a fraction of JPMorgan Chase’s $256 billion.

So, according to sources in the investment banking world, Goldman might be on the market for a deal with another major bank in the next few months. It would be a change for a firm that has long valued its independence.

FOX Business’s Charles Gasparino, in a tweet, revealed the news, saying that sources told him Goldman Sachs’ “weakening biz model” would “force a merger.”

Goldman Sachs Chief Financial Officer Stephen Scherr said the bank would be open to acquisitions as a way to boost its current projects.

Partnering with Goldman Sachs could be a boon for Wells Fargo, which saw its reputation damaged after a scandal last year involving fake accounts made in order to hit a quota. The scandal ended up costing the bank billions in court-mandated costs and business clients. CEO John Stumpf was also let go due to the affair.

Wells Fargo’s new CEO, Charles Schwarf, is a former JPMorgan executive, and that bank has always held to a belief that partnerships between commercial and investment banking can lead to better customer service, Fox Business reported.

PNC may be looking for a new partner after announcing plans to sell its 22 percent stake in money management Blackrock, sources speculated, according to Fox Business.

PNC held around 35 million common and Series B preferred shares in the company, and CEO William Demchak said the sale would leave PNC well-positioned to take advantage of investment opportunities later on, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.