Goldman Sachs surprises nervous Wall Street

18 March 2008

Although investors knew that Goldman Sachs was always likely to weather current financial turmoil better than expected, its latest results have surprised analysts by not being as poor as anticipated at this difficult time.

For the first quarter, revenues and profits were down, but not by as much as had been forecast.

While many banking giants posted losses, Goldman is still announcing profits, although they have decreased from the same period the previous year.

Revenues at America's largest investment bank totalled $8.34 billion in the three months to the end of February, down from $12.7 billion for the same period in the previous year.

Whereas last year the bank made profits of $3.2 billion, the equivalent of $6.67 per share, for the first quarter of its previous financial year, this year, these roughly halved to $1.51 billion, or $3.23 a share.

"Market conditions are clearly very difficult," chairman and chief executive Lloyd Blankfein was quoted by the Guardian as saying.

"But we saw strong customer activity across many of our franchise businesses in the first quarter. Although market conditions present many challenges at the moment they also offer considerable opportunities," he added.

The consensus among analysts was that earnings per share would drop to just $2.58.

Become a bobsguide member to access the following

1. Unrestricted access to bobsguide
2. Send a proposal request
3. Insights delivered daily to your inbox
4. Career development