Bloomberg News

Goldman Raises ‘Reasonably Possible’ Legal-Claim Estimate 30%

November 09, 2011

Nov. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc., the fifth- biggest U.S. bank by assets, raised its estimate of “reasonably possible” losses from legal claims by 30 percent in the third quarter.

The estimate rose to $2.6 billion as of Sept. 30 from $2 billion on June 30, the New York-based company said in its quarterly filing today with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Banks started releasing estimates of possible losses after the SEC told corporate finance chiefs in October 2010 that they should disclose such costs “when there is at least a reasonable possibility” that they may be incurred, even if the risk is too low to require reserves.

The estimate, the fourth of its kind made by Goldman Sachs, is the “upper end” of losses in matters where the risk is “more than remote but less than likely,” the firm said.

--Editors: Steve Dickson, Keith Campbell.

To contact the reporter on this story: Christine Harper in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Scheer at

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