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Goldman CEO says exec Dina Powell will not attend Saudi investment conference



According to CEO David Solomon, Goldman Sachs pulled one of his senior executives off attendance at a conference in Saudi Arabia following the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

The company was ready to send Dina Powell to the conference, but decided in the midst of the uproar over Khashoggi's apparent murder, Solomon said in an interview with CNBC's Wilfred Frost on Thursday. Khashoggi disappeared earlier this month after visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. Powell is a member of the New York Bank's powerful management committee and has served as a senior advisor to the Trump administration.

"This incident is unacceptable and clearly they must answer questions," said Solomon. "How they answer these questions, and how more information becomes visible about them, will affect how we all interact."

Solomon, who officially became Goldman's CEO on October 1

, is charged with transforming companies from a predominantly Wall Street firm into a company that reaches far more retail and corporate customers. Part of his challenge is to generate more revenue from the company's traditional clients in governments and sovereign wealth funds.

"As far as Saudi Arabia is concerned in recent years, we have listened to their vision of more broadly engaged in and economic diversification of the global economy and reorganizing or transforming their society," Solomon said. "We listened and watched, and to the degree that they could do that would be good for Saudi Arabia and good for the world."


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