Date
4 December 2016
Steven Mnuchin built his career sniffing out undervalued assets and converting them into massive profits. Photo: WSJ
Steven Mnuchin built his career sniffing out undervalued assets and converting them into massive profits. Photo: WSJ

Trump to name Steven Mnuchin as Treasury chief

President-elect Donald Trump will name longtime banker and former Goldman Sachs executive Steven Mnuchin as Treasury secretary.

Mnuchin was a campaign loyalist and fundraiser who built his career sniffing out undervalued assets and converting them into massive profits, the Wall Street Journal reports. 

Mnuchin, 53, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker turned Hollywood financier, parlayed a six-month stint as Donald Trump’s campaign finance chair into the president-elect’s pick to be Treasury secretary.

Meanwhile, billionaire investor Wilbur Ross is expected to be named US commerce secretary, according to Reuters.

Mnuchin’s Wall Street pedigree presents a contrast with the populist themes Trump struck in his campaign, railing against big banks and vowing to close tax loopholes that benefit hedge funds.

Trump also repeatedly attacked his rivals in the primary and general elections for their Wall Street ties, especially those connected to Goldman Sachs.

If confirmed by the Senate as Treasury secretary, Mnuchin will join a list of prominent bankers who made similar moves from Wall Street to Washington, including two of his former bosses at Goldman, Henry Paulson and Robert Rubin, who were both top Goldman executives before running Treasury.

Despite his successful Wall Street career, Mnuchin has no experience running a massive organization—the Treasury Department has 86,000 employees—or in economic or financial policymaking. The biggest entity Mnuchin has run was the technology division of Goldman, which had about 5,000 employees.

Mnuchin joined Goldman in 1985. He worked in the fixed-income department, eventually overseeing trading in mortgages, US government, money market and municipal bonds. He made partner in 1994. He later became the firm’s chief information officer.

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