ZURICH (Reuters Breakingviews) – Ever since Goldman Sachs chieftain David Solomon signalled his interest in expanding further into consumer financial services, many investors have speculated the Wall Street firm will want to buy an American bank like U.S. Bancorp or PNC Financial Services. But imagine if the target of Goldman’s affections were to reside someplace entirely different – like in Switzerland. The logos of Swiss banks UBS and Credit Suisse are seen on a sign in Zurich, February 13, 2013. A transatlantic banking deal probably sounds like the stuff of regulators’ nightmares. As the conventional wisdom would have it, no watchdog in Washington, Frankfurt or Bern wants to see big banks get bigger, more complicated or harder to oversee. Blending a Wall Street behemoth with a Swiss juggernaut is, therefore, hard to contemplate. But by partnering with one of Zurich’s banking beauties, Goldman – or rivals including Morgan Stanley or Bank of America – would have a better-balanced business that is arguably safer and less dependent on risky trading. It’s basically the argument that has propelled Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive James Gorman to bulk up on wealth management, culminating in the $13 billion purchase of E*Trade he announced… Read full this story
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