Goldman to sell market-maker unit

Goldman Sachs Group Inc is in the process of selling its “designated market-maker” unit, people familiar with the matter told the Financial Times on Tuesday.

The US-based investment bank is in talks with Dutch firm IMC Financial Markets to sell the trading business, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Credit: AFP

NYSE and Goldman Sachs declined to comment on the story.

IMC Financial Markets could not be reached outside of normal business hours.

Formerly known as “specialists,” designated market-makers operate both manually and electronically to facilitate price discovery during market openings, closings and during periods of substantial trading imbalances or instability for thousands of NYSE-listed stocks.

A person close to the matter told the FT that Goldman will retain a brokerage role and continue to provide liquidity electronically for NYSE stocks.

Goldman acquired the designated market-maker unit as part of its $6.5 billion purchase in 2000 of Spear, Leeds & Kellogg, which ranked as the largest US stock and options clearing firm by volume at that time.

Other Spear, Leeds assets have helped Goldman build lucrative electronic stock trading platforms. - Reuters