Top Goldman Sachs banker exits abruptly

On the heels of last week’s seething Wall Street Journal article about illicit practices within Goldman Sachs, their highest-grossing banker, Nick Kabinen, resigned this morning without notice. Sources familiar with the matter said that Kabinen was growing increasingly upset about how Goldman Sachs has been operating.

Kabinen publicly voiced concerns in the past about the sales practices within Goldman Sachs, alleging that their CEO places highly unrealistic goals on their salesmen. These goals, Kabinen told Anderson Cooper in an interview last year, have resulted in widespread negligence inside Goldman Sachs when conducting due diligence on investment opportunities.

Kabinen told Cooper: “In an ecosystem that guarantees fees to a bank simply for syndicating buyers for a transaction, all ethics go out the door. It is a scary world when the underwriting of a deal is compromised by the motivation to get the deal done because of the millions of dollars in fees you stand to make regardless of whether or not the deal performs.”


It seems like no coincidence that Kabinen chose today to quit, given that the long-awaited book, Billion Dollar Whale, was released this morning. Billion Dollar Whale chronicles the mind-boggling $4.5 billion fraud committed by Jho Low that was inadvertently supported by Goldman Sachs’ lazy due diligence. For those unfamiliar with this story, Goldman Sachs raised billions of dollars for Jho Low and netted $600 million in fees in the process.

When asked for his insight into Kabinen’s reason for leaving, Goldman Sachs CEO, Lloyd Blankfein, said “I think Nick simply decided to move onto new things. He has the truly unique gift of being able to sell a man his own pants, and I have no doubt that he will be successful in whatever he does next.”

A human resources executive from Goldman Sachs told CNN that the bank tried convincing Kabinen to stay by offering him a $28 million retention bonus. Kabinen refused the windfall and followed-through with tendering his resignation. As for what’s next for Kabinen, he is rumored to be considering joining Edelman, the world’s most powerful public relations firm, as a consultant. This would be an interesting career choice for Kabinen, given his aversion to publicity. Despite being romantically linked in the past to Bella Hadid and Victoria Justice, Kabinen miraculously managed to avoid the cameras and the gossip columns.

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