Goldman Sachs just had a historically bad quarter in trading - Foenaija - Home

Goldman Sachs just had a historically bad quarter in trading

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lloyd blankfeinJonathan Ernst/Reuters

  • Goldman Sachs just released results from its fourth quarter, beating analyst expectations with adjusted earnings of $5.68 per share. 
  • However, the fixed-income business struggled again, with revenues of just $1 billion — down by half from the same period a year before, and down 31% quarter-on-quarter. 
  • It's a historically bad quarter for the fixed-income business, which has been a focus for investors and management. 

Goldman Sachs' fixed-income business just racked up a record it didn't want.

The unit posted quarterly revenues of $1 billion in the final three months of 2017, the lowest quarterly revenue line for that business since Goldman Sachs started breaking out fixed income, currencies, and commodities client execution revenues in 2010. That $1 billion figure also represented a 50% decline from a year ago, and a 31% drop from the previous quarter. 

In its earnings release, the bank said that both the equities and fixed income units "continued to operate in a challenging environment characterized by low levels of volatility and low client activity" in the fourth quarter.

Here's a breakdown of recent quarterly revenue numbers for fixed income:

goldman FICC revenueBusiness Insider/Andy Kiersz, data from Goldman Sachs

It's likely to be a cause for concern for investors and management. 

The US investment bank in September set out a strategy to generate an additional $1 billion or more in fixed income, currencies, and commodities revenues.

"We are not satisfied with our recent performance in FICC," Harvey Schwartz, president and co-chief operating officer, said at the time. "We are intensely focused on it. We know you are, as well."

Goldman Sachs is hosting a conference call to discuss its results Thursday morning. You can expect this topic to be discussed at length. 

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