Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) posted the highest earnings per share in more than five years as all of its major businesses topped analysts’ estimates and the firm paid out a smaller portion of revenue to compensate employees.
Net income surged 40 percent to $2.84 billion, or $5.94 a share, from $2.03 billion, or $4.02, a year earlier, the New York-based company said Thursday in a statement. That was higher than all 26 estimates in a Bloomberg survey of analysts.
Chief Executive Officer Lloyd C. Blankfein, 60, has preached patience as he stuck with trading businesses that competitors pared. His firm’s 12 percent increase in bond-trading revenue and 46 percent jump in equities surpassed gains at JPMorgan Chase & Co., the biggest U.S. bank by assets.
Goldman Sachs, which climbed 3.8 percent this year through Wednesday, advanced 0.6 percent to $202.25 at 8:18 a.m. in New York.
Revenue rose 14 percent to $10.6 billion, the highest in four years. The firm’s return on equity, a measure of profitability that takes into account how much capital the business uses, was 14.7 percent in the first quarter, compared with 10.9 percent a year earlier.
Fixed-income, currency and commodity trading revenue was $3.17 billion, up 12 percent from a year earlier, excluding accounting adjustments. That topped estimates of $3.08 billion from Barclays Plc’s Jason Goldberg and $3.03 billion from Brian Kleinhanzl at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods.
Revenue from the equities division increased to $2.34 billion, excluding accounting charges. That exceeded Goldberg’s $1.73 billion estimate and a projection of $1.62 billion from Kleinhanzl.