Goldman Doubles Profit Despite Lackluster Trading Results


Goldman's profit rose from a hard year-ago quarter, with earnings per share of $5.15 versus $2.68.

Income from share dealing fell and fees from bond, currency and commodity trading were relatively flat.

Goldman Sachs and Bank of America saw their net income and revenues increase in the first quarter of 2017, the global investment banking giants said Tuesday. The lender beat analysts' estimates for profit and revenue.

Yahoo reported a higher-than-expected revenue with a 35.6 increase in Mavens, the mobile, video, native and social advertising units that the company has touted as key emerging businesses. Banks with bigger balance sheets tend to profit not only from financing corporations but from capturing hedging and other markets-related business as well.

In a statement, Goldman Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein described the business environment as "mixed" with client activity "challenged". The first quarter is typically the strongest for trading desks, as the investors return from the holidays and reposition their portfolios for the new year.

Overall, Goldman's profit rose 80 percent to $2.2 billion from $1.2 billion in the first quarter of 2016, when sliding commodity prices, worries about the Chinese economy and uncertainty about US interest rates led to weak results across Wall Street.

Goldman's results stood in sharp contrast to other big US banks that have reported earnings so far.

Investment-banking revenue, which includes fees from underwriting as well as advising on mergers, climbed 16% in the quarter.

The bank also made $1.46 billion in its investing and lending business in the quarter, a sharp increase from the $87 million it made in the same period a year earlier. Shares fell almost 5% by the time the market closed in a selloff that knocked roughly $4.3 billion off the market capitalization of America's most valuable bank.

Companywide revenue rose 27 percent to $8.03 billion, compared with the $8.33 billion average estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

Earnings per share rose to $5.15 from $2.68.

Goldman Sachs also announced the repurchase of an addition 50 million shares of common stock and raised its quarterly dividend to 75 cents from 65 cents per common share.