Goldman Sachs (GS) Secures South African Banking License

Per Bloomberg, Goldman Sachs GS recently received a license from South Africa’s regulators to offer core banking products in the country.

With this permit, Goldman became a member of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s interest-rate and currency-derivatives market. In addition to the previously offered services related to advisory, wealth and asset management, the bank will provide fixed-income products, foreign exchange and South African government securities to corporate and institutional investors. Moreover, it will open a Johannesburg branch of Goldman Sachs International Bank, which is headquartered in London.

Notably, Goldman has operated in this market for more than 20 years, and in December 2019, it appointed Jonathan Penkin as head of the local business in South Africa.

Some companies like Macquarie Group Ltd., Arqaam Capital Ltd., Deutsche Bank DB, Barclays BCS and Credit Suisse Group CS have reduced operations in the South African economy. However, Goldman’s action reflects management’s belief that there is tremendous opportunity for the bank to serve both local and global clients.


Goldman has been undertaking strategic initiatives to counter falling revenues by entering new markets and diversifying income sources. Along with expansion in core banking, the company entered into a deal with Investec, a South Africa-based investment bank, to fortify equity trading in the region.

Apart from South Africa, the bank has also applied for a banking license in Japan in order to offer global cash management services. Also, Goldman has plans to double the workforce in China over the next five years and intends to add to its advisory, markets and merchant banking operations in the mainland.

Moreover, in January, the company launched a mobile app for Marcus, an online-only retail bank to boost consumer banking revenues. Such efforts are likely to improve top-line growth, going forward.

Price Performance

Shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company have appreciated 26.2% over the past year, outperforming the industry’s rise of 13%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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