Bloomberg News

Goldman Sachs Traders Lost Money 15 Days in Second Quarter

August 09, 2011

(Updates with earnings in the third paragraph.)

Aug. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc., the U.S. bank that makes more than half its revenue from trading, lost money in that business on 15 days during the second quarter, the most daily losses since the fourth quarter of 2008.

The firm’s traders lost more than $100 million on one of the days, according to the New York-based company’s quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. They generated more than $100 million on four days out of 63 total days, the filing showed. The second quarter ended June 30.

Goldman Sachs, the fifth-biggest U.S. bank by assets, last month reported second-quarter earnings that fell short of analysts’ estimates as fixed-income trading revenue plunged 63 percent from the first quarter. The company blamed the fixed- income trading drop, which was more than twice as large as any other bank’s, on a reduction in risk-taking.

The company reported zero days of trading losses during the first quarter of last year, the first perfect quarter in the firm’s history. It reported 10 such days in the second quarter, two in the third and 13 in the fourth.

The company said its trading losses exceeded the firm’s value-at-risk limit, a measure of how much the company could lose in the securities markets in one day, on one occasion during the quarter. Average daily value-at-risk was $101 million in the quarter.

--Editor: Steve Dickson

To contact the reporter on this story: Christine Harper in New York at charper@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net.


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