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Brown lambastes Goldman Sachs' "moral bankruptcy"

The prime minister attacked Goldman Sachs after reports that the investment bank was planning to pay

The pay-out includes about £600m to 5,500 London-based employees. Brown's outrage surfaced in the backdrop of accusations by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of the US that Goldman defrauded investors to the tune of $1bn during the sub-prime housing crisis.

Talking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, Brown called for a special investigation into the conduct of Goldman and said that the City watchdog, the UK Financial Services Authority, should without delay launch an inquiry into the affair in co-operation with the US regulator.

The SEC has pressed charges against the investment bank, accusing it of failing to disclose conflicts of interest during the marketing of sub-prime mortgages which led to massive losses for investors.

Brown called it "one of the worst cases" that he had seen, and said it underlined the need for further reform in the international banking system. He added that the banks still remain a "risk to the economy" and there was a need to ensure that they behave in a "proper way."