EBay CEO Quits Goldman Sachs Board

Meg Whitman, CEO of online auction site eBay Inc., resigned Friday from the board of investment bank Goldman, Sachs Group Inc.

The resignation was prompted by a Wall Street Journal report that said Whitman was under congressional investigation for receiving shares in more than 100 initial public offerings managed by Goldman since 1996.

Whitman is alleged to have quickly sold those shares for a profit, a practice called “spinning,” where stock is given to senior corporate executives for investment banking business. Congress and regulators are investigating that practice.

EBay, San Jose, CA, told the newspaper that Whitman quit the board to dispel notions that the relationship with Goldman was influencing her decisions. Whitman also sits on the board of Procter & Gamble Co. and is a trustee of Princeton University in New Jersey.

New York-based Goldman has gained $8 million in investment banking fees from eBay since 1996. But Whitman denies any wrongdoing and claimed the shares she received did not win Goldman any business. Goldman, too, has denied wrongdoing.

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