The board of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) announced Friday that it intends to elect Lloyd C. Blankfein as its next chairman and chief executive officer after the investment banking company's current head, Henry M. Paulson Jr., moves to the U.S. Treasury.

The board said in a statement that the election of Blankfein will occur after Paulson is confirmed by the U.S. Senate for the Treasury post.

Paulson, 60, was selected Tuesday by President Bush as the next Treasury secretary. He will succeed John Snow, the former head of CSX Corp., who indicated he wanted to return to the private sector.

Goldman Sachs, which is headquartered in New York, is a leading global investment banking, securities and investment management company.

Blankfein has been its president and chief operating officer since January 2004 and a director since April 2003, Goldman Sachs said.

He has been an executive at the company since 1994, when he was head of the currency and commodities division. He later advanced to the rank of vice chairman with responsibility for fixed income, currency and commodities as well as the equities division.

Founded in 1869, Goldman Sachs is one of the oldest and largest investment banking companies with offices in New York, London, Frankfurt, Tokyo, Hong Kong and other major cities.

In afternoon trading, Goldman Sachs shares rose 80 cents to $154.35 on the New York Stock Exchange.