According to Bloomberg on Tuesday, Goldman Sachs paid a former female partner more than $12 million to resolve allegations that senior executives fostered a hostile work environment for women.
According to Bloomberg, which cited sources with knowledge of the former partner’s complaint, top executives—including CEO David Solomon—were accused of making sexist or vulgar comments about women at the company. According to the complaint, women at Goldman were treated disrespectfully and paid less than men, according to Bloomberg, which also cited the sources.
According to the news source, Goldman management was “rattled” by the complaint and settled it two years ago to prevent word of the allegations from reaching the public. The female partner, who now works for a different company, declined to talk to Bloomberg. Bloomberg said that part of the reason it suppressed her identity was because she never made her accusations public.
Accusations that Wall Street’s aggressive attitude leads to unequal treatment of female employees are still being dealt with. A class-action complaint alleging gender discrimination might be heard against Solomon, who succeeded predecessor Lloyd Blankfein in 2018. Goldman has disputed the allegations and has made an effort to get the lawsuit dismissed.
An ex-Goldman managing director published a memoir earlier this year that included incidents of harassment she experienced throughout her 18-year tenure at the firm.
In public statements, Solomon stated that hiring and promoting more women and minorities were among his top goals, and the business has made public its initiatives to increase the number of women working at the bank.
There have also been allegations of systemic discrimination against women in other fields with a male preponderance, like technology and law. In order to resolve a lawsuit alleging that the technology company had discriminated against thousands of female employees, Alphabet subsidiary Google agreed to pay $118 million in June.
According to Bloomberg, which cited persons with knowledge of the lawsuit, the events the Goldman partner recounted allegedly occurred in 2018 and 2019, and included male executives criticising the bodies of female employees and giving them menial jobs. Fewer than 1% of the firm’s employees hold the extremely difficult-to-achieve partner status, which comes with increased income and other benefits.
Leading Goldman attorney Kathy Ruemmler told CNBC that the company refuted the Bloomberg article. Beyond its statement, the New York-based bank declined to comment or respond to inquiries about whether the $12 million settlement had been paid.
Ruemmler stated in the statement via email that “Bloomberg’s article contains factual inaccuracies, and we contest this story.” Anyone who works with David is aware of his regard for women and his lengthy history of fostering an environment that is welcoming and encouraging to women.
In response to Goldman’s remark, a Bloomberg spokesman said, “We stand by our story.”