Donald Trump to name ex-Goldman Sachs banker Steven Mnuchin as Treasury Secretary

He served as finance chairman for the Trump campaign – and also produced a number of Hollywood blockbusters

Feliks Garcia
New York
Wednesday 30 November 2016 01:03 GMT
Drew Angerer/Getty
Drew Angerer/Getty

Donald Trump is expected to name a man with ties to Wall Street and no government experience to the post of Treasury Secretary.

Steven Terner Mnuchin, 53, is an ex-banker for Goldman Sachs who has spent recent years as a Hollywood producer. He joined the Trump campaign as finance chairman in May.

Mr Trump campaigned repeatedly accused his opponent Hillary Clinton of being in the pocket of Wall Street executives who “robbed” working class Americans. And the appointment of Mr Mnuchin – who spent years as a Goldman chief executive – signifies yet another shift from the President-elect’s major campaign promises.

In fact, in 2009, Mr Mnuchin benefitted directly from the housing meltdown. He led the group that bought IndyMac, a lender that offered high risk subprime loans, for an incredibly low price, according to CNN.

As chairman of the company, now called OneWest, Mr Mnuchin sold it to the small business lender in 2015 for twice the price paid.

Mr Mnuchin – who bankrolled such movies as Mad Max: Fury Road, Suicide Squad, The Lego Movie, and American Sniper – would help carry out many of Mr Trump’s economic policies, including tax cuts and infrastructure spending. But he would also manage federal government debt, oversee banking regulations, and the Internal Revenue Service.

He joined Goldman Sachs when he was 22, where he served as a partner until leaving 17 years later in 2002. For a brief period of time, he worked for liberal financier George Soros. He then started his own hedge fund, Dune Capital Management in 2004.

According to Bloomberg, close friends of Mr Mnuchin found his position in the Trump campaign as a bit of a shock.

“This was a unique moment in time where there’s a unique role for me,” he said of helping his long time friend, Mr Trump, in August. “It’s a unique moment in time. A unique opportunity to help.”

He added: “Nobody’s going to be like, ‘Well, why did he do this?’ if I end up in the administration.”

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