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商业 - 金融

高盛依然风险重重

Stephen Gandel 2013年03月18日

美国联邦储备委员会公布的银行业压力测试表明,如果再次爆发金融危机,高盛可能损失250亿美元,高出所有银行。老对头摩根士丹利不到它的一半。只有摩根大通与高盛相近,美联储预计,它可能产生235亿美元的损失。

    过去一年,高盛(Goldman Sachs)管理层一直在试图重塑公司形象,让这家总是被视为华尔街流氓的公司看起来不再像过去那么风险重重。不过,美国联邦储备委员会(Federal Reserve,简称:美联储)看来似乎并不相信。

    周四收盘后,我们会对美联储的想法有更清楚的认识,届时这家银行业监管机构将发布银行业压力测试的最终结果。

    初步结果显示,如果再次爆发金融危机,高盛可能损失250亿美元,高于美联储测算的其他任何一家银行。

    按美联储的测算值,高盛潜在的交易损失是老对头对手摩根士丹利(Morgan Stanley)的两倍还多。同为美联储测算,摩根士丹利潜在的交易损失不到120亿美元。只有摩根大通(JPMorgan Chase)与高盛相近。美联储预计,这家由杰米•戴蒙执掌的银行可能产生235亿美元的损失。

    高盛拒绝对压力测试发表评论。高盛CEO劳埃德•布莱克费恩早已宣布关闭自营交易业务。最近,布莱克费恩和高盛首席运营官加里•科恩也一直在警告债券泡沫。

    高盛在最近提交的年报中称,2012年高盛的日均风险价值(即可能损失的最高金额)是8,600万美元,比2009年时低了60%。

    但美联储似乎认为,高盛的交易业务风险远没有像它自己说的那样大幅下降。如果按高盛测算的日均风险价值,可能要290个交易日,高盛才会达到美联储预测的250亿美元潜在损失。但美联储的压力测试预计这些损失大部分会在2013年底前发生;压力测试衡量的是,如果去年10月至明年经济出现滑坡,各家银行可能拿出的表现。它意味着,就算连续一年多每天损失8,600万美元(高盛自测日损失上限),它可能也要更多一些时间才能达到美联储的损失目标。

    相比之下,摩根士丹利如果采用2012年交易业务的风险测算,达到美联储的损失测算值可能需要160天多一点。花旗(Citigroup)达到测算的交易损失可能需要107天。

    实际情形当然不会完全是这样。即便是在眼下这轮金融危机期间,大多数公司也不是每天都在亏钱。长期以来,华尔街分析师们对于这些交易损失测算值向来都是半信半疑。事实上,所谓的风险价值(VaR)指标是华尔街最不受信赖的指标之一。这说明了一些问题。大多数人相信VaR在下一场金融危机中可能激增。不过,压力测试显示,很多银行,(特别是高盛)向股东们报告的这项主要风险指标可能有多不靠谱。

    而且,高盛的VaR并不包括这家公司通过私募股权和债券基金投资的近40亿美元长期投资可能发生的任何损失。但即便所有这些投资化为乌有,它还需要再损失210亿美元。而且,就连这个数字也需要244天。

    摩根士丹利分析师贝斯•格拉色克估计,高盛潜在的交易损失以及在压力测试中总体表现糟糕可能导致这家公司将明年的股票回购金额削减1/3至40亿美元。如果周四下午美联储确实是这样说的,投资者不应为缩减股票回购计划而遗憾。他们或许想问的是,高盛以及华尔街究竟做出了多少改变。(财富中文网)

    In the last year or so, Goldman Sachs executives have tried to portray their firm, often seen as a Wall Street swashbuckler, as a lot less risky than it used to be. The Federal Reserve appears not to be convinced.

    We'll get a better idea of what the Fed thinks on Thursday after the market closes, when the bank regulator releases the final results of its stress tests.

    The preliminary results suggest Goldman could lose $25 billion from bad trades in another financial crisis, more than any other bank tested by the Fed.

    Goldman's (GS) potential trading losses were more than double what the Fed saw possible at Goldman's closest rival, Morgan Stanley (MS). The Fed put Morgan's trading risk at just under $12 billion. Only JPMorgan Chase (JPM) came close. The Fed estimated that Jamie Dimon's bank could have $23.5 billion in losses.

    Goldman declined to comment on the stress tests. In the past, CEO Lloyd Blankfein has said that the firm closed its proprietary trading operations. Recently, both Blankfein and Goldman COO Gary Cohn have been warning about a bond bubble.

    In its recently filed annual report, Goldman said that in 2012 the amount it risked in the market -- i.e. the maximum amount it could lose -- on average per day was $86 million, down 60% from what it was back in 2009.

    But the Fed seems to think the risk in Goldman's trading book hasn't dropped nearly as much as the bank says. By Goldman's risk estimate it would take the firm 290 trading days to lose the nearly $25 billion that the Fed suggests it could in a downturn. But the bulk of the estimated trading losses in the Fed's stress test, which tracks how the banks would do in an economic downturn that hypothetically started last October and runs through next year, are expected to take place by the end of 2013. That leaves Goldman a few days shy of its ability to get to the Fed's dubious goal, even if it were to lose $86 million -- the maximum it says it could lose -- everyday for more than a year.

    Morgan Stanley, by comparison, would reach its Fed loss mark in just over 160 days based on its estimates of the risk its trading desk took in 2012. Citigroup (C) would get to its allotted trading loss in 107 days.

    This is of course not really how things would work. Even during the financial crisis most firms didn't lose money trading every single day. Wall Street analysts have long taken these estimates of how much a firm's trading desk could lose with a grain of salt. Behind the scenes the so-called value-at-risk measure is one of the least trusted on Wall Street. And that's saying something. Most people believe VARs would spike in another financial crisis. Still, the stress test points out just how far off the main figure of risk that banks, but Goldman in particular, reports to its shareholders must be.

    What's more, Goldman's VAR doesn't include any losses it could have on the nearly $4 billion in long-term investments the firm has made through its own private equity and debt funds. But even if all those investments went to zero, it would still have to lose another $21 billion. Even that amount would take 244 days.

    Morgan Stanley analyst Betsey Graseck estimates that Goldman's potential trading losses and its poor showing in general in the stress tests means the firm may be forced to cut the amount it was expected to spend in share buybacks next year by a third to $4 billion. If that is indeed what the Fed says on Thursday afternoon, investors should do more than mourn the lost buybacks. They may want to question just how much Goldman, and Wall Street in general, has really changed.

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