Blankfein Says China’s Expansion to Have ‘Huge Consequences’

Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein
“We’d be making a mistake if we overfunded it, put too many people, too much investment,” Lloyd Blankfein, chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs Group Inc., said today. “We want to keep growing our business commensurate with opportunities set in China.” Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Feb. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Lloyd C. Blankfein said China’s economic growth will have “huge consequences” for global expansion prospects.

“The China growth story is going to be the story of the next 30-40 years,” Blankfein said in an interview with Bloomberg Television’s John Dawson from Hong Kong while attending the Goldman Sachs Global Macro conference. “We really need that growth in China to occur.”

Blankfein said Goldman Sachs, which became the first Wall Street firm to start underwriting securities in China after winning a license in 2004, will be judicious in investing more in the nation. The New York-based bank also has private-equity, asset management and institutional brokerage businesses in the world’s second-largest economy.

“We’d be making a mistake if we overfunded it, put too many people, too much investment,” Blankfein said today. “We want to keep growing our business commensurate with opportunities set in China.”

The firm was the top adviser in helping Chinese companies sell shares overseas last year, data compiled by Bloomberg show, and ranked second in advising on China domestic equity and equity-linked offerings through its joint venture.

China’s economy grew 7.7 percent in 2013, the same rate as in 2012. Expansion is forecast to be 7.4 percent this year, the weakest pace since 1990, based on the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey.

To contact the reporters on this story: Chitra Somayaji in Hong Kong at csomayaji@bloomberg.net; Russell Ward in Tokyo at rward16@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chitra Somayaji at csomayaji@bloomberg.net