* Firm says facing "several shareholder actions"
* Claims range from corporate waste to unjust enrichment
* Suits seek damages, reform
By Steve Eder
NEW YORK, May 3 Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N),
in a rare move, disclosed a trove of information about the many
lawsuits and shareholder challenges facing the bank.
Goldman, which made the disclosure in a filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange commission, has been criticized
for being too tight-lipped about its legal entanglements.
The disclosure came nearly a week after Chief Executive
Lloyd Blankfein faced off with a Senate panel about the role
the dominant Wall Street bank played in the subprime mortgage
The filing says several shareholder suits have been filed
against the bank, accusing it and its executives of "breach of
fiduciary duty, corporate waste, abuse of control,
mismanagement and unjust enrichment ... and challenging the
accuracy and completeness of GS Inc.'s disclosure."
Goldman, which included copies of a half dozen shareholder
complaints in the filing and a shareholder letter, said the
lawsuits seek declaratory relief, compensatory damages,
restitution and corporate governance reforms.
The shareholder suits [ID:nN26197174] began pouring in
after the SEC accused Goldman of failing to tell investors the
securities underlying a so-called synthetic collateralized debt
obligation were chosen by billionaire hedge fund investor John
Paulson, whose fund was betting that the CDO would lose value.
Goldman also has been criticized for not telling
shareholders that last summer it received a Wells Notice from
the SEC, signaling the likelihood of civil charges.
Some of the shareholder lawsuits allege that Goldman's
failure to disclose the Wells Notice cost them dearly, given
the 21 percent drop in the company's shares since the filing of
the SEC civil suit.
(Reporting by Steve Eder; editing by John Wallace)