Goldman Sachs’s Tusar Will Step Down as Electronic Trading Chief

Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which generates the most revenue from equity trading of any bank in the world, said Greg Tusar, global head of electronic trading, will leave after 13 years at the firm.

Tusar, 43, will focus on the company’s REDI trading software business before departing at the end of May, according to a memo sent to employees yesterday. Michael DuVally, a spokesman at the New York-based firm, confirmed the memo’s contents.

“Greg’s leadership has played an integral role in the evolution and growth of our global electronic-trading franchise,” Pablo J. Salame and Isabelle Ealet, co-heads of the global securities division, said in the memo.

Tusar joined Goldman Sachs in 2000 when the firm acquired Spear, Leeds & Kellogg LP, the biggest specialist firm on the New York Stock Exchange. He was named managing director in 2003 and promoted to partner in 2008. Tusar joined TLW Securities in 1992 and was chief executive officer when Spear Leeds bought the company in 1999, the memo said.

The electronic trading chief spent years representing Goldman Sachs at industry conferences and commenting publicly about exchange and regulatory rule proposals involving equities market structure. Tusar was involved in the bank’s decisions to make investments in companies including Direct Edge Holdings LLC, an exchange operator based in Jersey City, New Jersey, according to the memo.

Combining Units

Goldman Sachs is merging the legal entities that handle equities trades by computers and by voice, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. The trading business of Goldman Sachs Execution & Clearing, which handles trades electronically, will be combined into Goldman Sachs & Co., the firm’s broker-dealer, by mid-year, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

Credit Suisse Group AG, Switzerland’s second-biggest bank by assets, last year merged its stock sales and trading unit with its top-ranked electronic equities-trading business and gave responsibility for the combined group to Dan Mathisson, who ran the electronic side.

Goldman Sachs plans to start cutting more than 5 percent of equity-trading division jobs today as it undertakes an annual cost-elimination exercise, according to a person familiar with the matter. Fewer than 5 percent of the jobs in fixed-income, currency and commodities trading will be cut, the person said. Reuters previously reported the job cut plans.

Wall Street firms are looking for ways to reduce costs after equities trading revenue fell 5 percent across the industry last year, the third straight annual drop, according to analytics firm Coalition Ltd. JPMorgan Chase & Co., the biggest U.S. bank, cut pay in its equities unit about 4 percent and pushed out about three dozen employees, people with knowledge of the moves said earlier this month.

Goldman Sachs disclosed in January that 13 percent of the equity division’s 2012 revenue actually came from a reinsurance business that the firm may sell.

Cuts to equity divisions are taking place even as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index reached its highest level in five years earlier this month.

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