The origins of GS Bank date back to the heyday of the financial crisis. Today Goldman Sachs’s sudden fondness of small accounts is mainly driven by recent bank regulations that look more kindly on retail deposits. The bank also is looking to make more loans.
At its current size, Goldman’s deposit base is much smaller than those at Bank of America, J.P. Morgan and Wells Fargo. Those banks each had more than $1 trillion in deposits at the end of the first quarter. Morgan Stanley, Goldman’s closest rival, also has increased deposits to $157.6 billion as of March 31, up 16% from March 2015. Goldman’s deposit efforts are overseen by Esta Stecher, a Goldman veteran who once helped oversee the firm’s legal team and who has run GS Bank since 2011. The firm also is pushing an online-lending project, dubbed “Mosaic” internally, to launch in the third quarter, people familiar with the matter said. The lending unit, led by former Discover Financial Services executive Harit Talwar, plans to offer unsecured loans to individuals and small businesses.