David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs: Gun policy must change now

New York
CNN Affairs

Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon said gun laws in the United States must change. And that change, he said, should come from above.

Solomon told CNN Business’s Christine Romans in an exclusive interview that government officials must “try to improve the environment in which we all operate” because it is a problem that private companies cannot solve. He added that although boycotts “create discussions”, it is ultimately up to lawmakers to make substantive policy changes.

“It needs to be legislated by law and it is time for our political leaders to come together on something so tragic for our country and make progress,” Solomon said. CNN Business spoke with him while he was at the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Graduation Ceremony in Iowa.

His public call to action comes after two mass shootings took place this month less than 24 hours apart. A gunman killed 22 people and injured 24 others in a shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas last Saturday. Hours later, a man killed nine people in a popular nightlife area in Dayton, Ohio.

Both events sparked public calls for new public firearms legislation. It is not known what new laws could be passed, if any. But President Donald Trump recently said there is “huge support” for changing background check laws.

Previous mass shootings have forced companies to change their policies.

Following the school massacre in Parkland, Florida, BlackRock (BLK) began offering its clients options for investing in funds that exclude gun manufacturers and retailers. Bank of America (BAC) has stopped loaning manufacturers of “military style firearms” used by civilians, and Citigroup (C) has said it will no longer do business with companies that sell firearms to people under the age of 21.

Soloman said Goldman Sachs (GS) does not work with companies that make high capacity assault weapons, shock stock, and magazines.

“We do business with retailers who sell guns, but we are thinking about what we should be doing and how we can contribute to this debate,” he said.

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