Top 20 Goldman Sachs Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

goldman sachs interview questions

By Mike Simpson

Calling Goldman Sachs a leader in the banking and investment industry seems like an understatement. The company was established way back in 1869 and quickly became a pioneer in the commercial paper business. Talk about a legacy!

Joining a company with real history is always exciting, but it’s daunting, too. That’s why you need to know how to nail those Goldman Sachs interview questions. Standing out from the crowd won’t be easy, but you can pull it off with the right preparation. Here’s what you need to know.

How to Answer Goldman Sachs Interview Questions

Before we take a deep dive into the Goldman Sachs interview questions, it’s smart to take a moment to review how to answer them. You need a great strategy if you’re going to separate yourself from the pack. That way, even if they hit you with a curveball, you’ll be ready.

One way that a Goldman Sachs hiring process deviates from others is how challenging it usually is. You’re going to face several rounds of interviews; that’s just a fact. It can feel a bit overwhelming as a result, but you can get through it if you take the proper steps.

Additionally, many of the questions will be hard-hitting, and it won’t always be clear what the hiring manager wants to hear. For example, they may present two potential paths of action – both with merit – and ask which you’d pursue. Since neither option is “wrong,” it can be hard to figure out what to do.

The main reason Goldman Sachs uses this approach is it’s not just looking for candidates with the right skills and experience; it’s also seeking the best personality for the work and environment. Luckily, you can find out a lot about what the company is after – including when it comes to skills, experience, and traits – by tackling some research.

First, take some time to really dig into the job description. Learn as much as you can about the skills Goldman Sachs is after and the experience they want to find. Then, reflect on what you bring to the table to see where you fit the best.

Also, see if you can see any extra tidbits that tell you the personality traits they want, as they’re sometimes buried in there. Phrases like “fast-paced” and “high-performance” can give you clues about the type of person they need, so don’t overlook them.

Next, it’s time to go to the company’s website and social media pages. Here, you can learn about its mission and values, and overall culture. However, also take some of it with a grain of salt.

Goldman Sachs is known for being a tough, highly professional environment with big expectations for its staff. While that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have other values or that aspects of its culture aren’t positive, it’s critical to keep that in mind. That way, you have a holistic picture of what the company is like for employees.

By heading to review sites where employees can describe their experiences, you can learn more about the culture than you can any other way. While you also want to take these with a grain of salt, as some may be exaggerated, any patterns you notice in the comments can be clues. Use those to learn more about what Goldman Sachs is after.

After that, it’s time to think about the job interview questions. While you’ll face off against some traditional ones, expect far more behavioral and situational questions.

Luckily, you can nail them by using the right techniques. For behavioral questions, combine the STAR Method and the Tailoring Method. For the situational ones, you’ll use a STAR-style approach but discuss hypotheticals. The Tailoring Method can really help you speak to the company’s needs there, so get friendly with it before your interview.

As an elite company in its industry, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Goldman Sachs is after the best of the best. Be prepared to answer questions about your education along with your work experience.

MIKE'S TIP: If you’re looking at investment-related jobs, have a mock portfolio to showcase. Along with showing the investment allocations, be ready to discuss why you included various companies, your reasoning for recent purchases or sales, and other details that give them glimpses you’re your thought process. That provides the hiring manager insights into your mentality and potential for success, both of which can work in your favor.

One last thing to know is that a lot of people are after these jobs. Goldman Sachs gets a ton of resumes and interviews a slew of candidates. In fact, just the internships draw in 236,000 applicants, accepting around 1.5 percent.

So, what does that mean for you? That you need to be different, interesting, and unique. Let your personality shine through. Highlight unconventional aspects of your history that show value. Differentiating yourself is the key, so don’t be afraid to occasionally walk just off the beaten path to stand out.

Top 3 Goldman Sachs Interview Questions

While Goldman Sachs is mainly known for banking and investment management, it’s important to realize that it hires for a slew of roles. There are receptionists, HR professionals, janitors, programmers, and so many more types of professionals on site.

As a result, the questions you’re asked in the interview may vary depending on the type of role. Since Goldman Sachs is – at its heart – a financial company, we’re focusing there. 

Here are the top three Goldman Sachs interview questions and answers.

1. How can you tell if a merger will ultimately be accreditive or dilutive? 

While you’ll face numerous behavioral and situational questions, expect some questions to focus on assessing your knowledge. This question aims to check your understanding of two key concepts relating to mergers, so you want to clearly demonstrate that you know what the terms mean and how you can determine which outcome is likely.


“With a merger, whether it will be accretive or dilutive depends on the impact of the merger on earnings per share, or EPS. If the EPS will increase, the merger is accretive. If the EPS will decline, it’s a dilutive deal.

Generally, increases occur if the price paid by the acquiring company is below the boost to its value the acquisition causes. The opposite is true for dilutive deals. Often, it’s possible to anticipate the outcome through careful analysis.

Additionally, even if a merger is dilutive, that doesn’t mean it isn’t a wise, strategic acquisition. In some cases, it can lead to EPS increases months or years down the line, making the initial hit worthwhile. As long as everyone’s aware of the ultimate goal and see how the acquisition fits into the plan, a dilutive deal is potentially worth pursuing.”

2. If you had an idea that would save the company $5 million annually but it could harm its reputation, what would you do?

This is a question that lets the hiring manager learn more about your priorities. While it seems like an either-or proposition, you don’t have to treat it that way.

In many cases, business is about finding happy mediums. With a question like this, your best bet is to talk about how you can capture savings while minimizing risk.


“First, I believe that the value of a great reputation is immeasurable, so sacrificing it for cash savings is never a smart move. If I was in this position, my first step would be to determine the potential reputational impact, including its nature and the degree of effect. Once I understood that, my goal would be modifying my existing idea to reduce or eliminate the potential reputational harm. While that may reduce the amount of cash savings as well, finding a happy medium could allow a savings to get captured without hindering public perception.”

3. What do you think is going on in the market right now?

This interview question is mainly for candidates in banking and investment-related roles. It’s designed to see how much you pay attention to existing trends and whether you try to find out the reasons behind them.

Ideally, you want to cite some current data points as you answer. Tie those into broader events and investor sentiment to create an answer that genuinely shines.


“Several factors are impacting the current market, with high inflation, supply chain issues, and labor shortages being some of the biggest. Together, those alter purchasing habits, production timelines, and overall costs.

High inflation classically hurts the market. Now that interest rates are also rising dramatically, you’re seeing more market decline. Currently, fears about a recession are also looming. While most would say we’re not there yet, some forthcoming reports are likely to show even higher inflation and may lead to even higher interest rates, pushing more people toward stable investments and causing many stocks to keep tumbling. There’s still time to turn things around, but without the right actions, a recession may occur, and I believe that’s what’s driving many people’s investment decisions.”

17 More Goldman Sachs Interview Questions

Here are 17 more Goldman Sachs interview questions you may encounter:

    1. Why do you want to work for Goldman Sachs?
    2. In your own words, what is discounted cash flow?
    3. Tell me about your experience in the banking industry.
    4. What’s the difference between a bond and a loan?
    5. Can you describe your degree of exposure to fixed income and equity markets?
    6. How would you handle a client that’s asking you to go against company policy?
    7. If you’re working on a confidential project and an uninvolved manager requests details, citing they need them for a critical decision, what would you do?
    8. How does Goldman Sachs stand out from its competitors?
    9. Why should prospective clients choose Goldman Sachs over our main competitors?
    10. Have you ever experienced work-life balance challenges during your career?
    11. What motivates you to excel?
    12. Which of your financial classes in college was your favorite? Why?
    13. Do you think that work quality or meeting deadlines is more important?
    14. What worries you most about the stock market today?
    15. If I handed you $25,000 to invest right now, what would you do with the money?
    16. How would you define integrity?
  1. What about investment banking appeals to you?

5 Good Questions to Ask at the End of a Goldman Sachs Interview

Once you reach the end of your Goldman Sachs interview, you typically have a chance to ask the hiring manager a few questions. This is a critical moment, as it allows you to learn more about the role, company, and culture.

During your interview, you may come up with some questions based on what you’re asked or what’s shared. However, you also want to learn a few solid ones before your interview. That way, if nothing during the meeting sparks a question, you have some options in your back pocket.

With that in mind, here are five good questions to ask at the end of a Goldman Sachs interview:

    1. How is success measured in this position?
    2. When it comes to its employees, what’s one thing that Goldman Sachs does better than its competitors?
    3. Why did you first apply to Goldman Sachs, and did the company meet your expectations?
    4. How would you describe the culture?
    5. How will this position shift and evolve over the next three years?

Putting It All Together

Ultimately, landing an interview and having a chance to take on Goldman Sachs interview questions is exciting. Just make sure to use all of the tips above to your advantage, and review each of the questions so that you’re prepared. That way, you’ll have all of the tools you need to shine.

Good luck!

About The Author

Mike Simpson

Co-Founder and CEO of Mike is a job interview and career expert and the head writer at His advice and insights have been shared and featured by publications such as Forbes, Entrepreneur, CNBC and more as well as educational institutions such as the University of Michigan, Penn State, Northeastern and others. Learn more about The Interview Guys on our About Us page.