With as much as $300 million in underwriting fees at stake, one of the largest paydays many years for investment bankers, Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) and JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) are reportedly among the leading candidates to land the underwriting job for the initial public offering of General Motors.
Citing one person with knowledge of the matter, a Fox Business report said, “All the signs coming out of Washington are that JPMorgan and BofA will win the deal.”
Even so, the process of selecting the underwriters isn’t over, and it’s not a surety the two companies will end up getting the account.
What seems to be most important about this report isn’t who may be getting it, but who isn’t, which in this case is Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).
Goldman CEO and chairman Lloyd Blankfein was out traveling, which was given as the reason behind his not showing up to be interviewed by Treasury and GM officials. That’s significant because almost all major banks has either their chairman or CEO at the procedure, implying Blankfein may have been considered a liability or distraction to the process for Goldman.
A person familiar with the matter said the Treasury and GM are looking for a head underwriter which would focus on the smaller investors, and another one that would target the larger institutional clients; the reason two companies were evidently named.
It’s doubtful that Goldman or competitor Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) will simply accept this, and will undoubtedly strongly pursue landing the underwriting job.