Wall Street Earnings

It’s already been a hectic day on Wall Street even before the bell, with two of the world’s largest banks sharing their earnings reports.

JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM) started the party with a bang on Friday, smashing through analysts’ expectations, and it appears other Big Banks aren’t going to be able to follow the lead. Both CitiGroup (NYSE: C) and Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) released their profits reports early on Monday, with Goldman’s profits taking a hit as trading faltered.

Though Goldman published its first miss in years, it still squeezed past analysts’ expectations, generating $2.25 billion of earnings in the period, or $5.71 a share, compared to the $4.89 prediction.

Goldman CEO David Solomon noted in the release that, “We are pleased with our performance in the first quarter, especially in the context of a muted start to the year,” adding, “Our core businesses generated solid results driven by our strong franchise positions. We are focused on new opportunities to grow and diversify our business mix and serve a broader range of clients globally.”

CitiGroup, too, squeezed past expert expectations, with a mixed report.

The bank bought back $4.06 billion in shares in the first quarter and returned $1.08 billion to investors through common-stock dividends.

Citigroup’s incomes for the quarter was 11% greater on a year-over-year basis. However, the business’s general profits fell 2% following a sharp downturn in its equity trading business, which fell 24% in the first quarter.

Citigroup stated the drop showed “lower market volumes and client financing balances.” The sharp decline was partially balanced out by a 20% revenue surge in investment banking revenue.

CitiGroup chief Michael Corban explained, “Our earnings reflect the progress we are making to improve our return on and return of capital,” adding, “We remain committed to executing our strategy and continuing to make steady progress towards our financial targets.”

Citi is the fourth major bank to report earnings this quarter. JPMorgan and Goldman reported broadly positive outcomes while Wells Fargo provided frustrating guidance, reflecting the difficulties of the embattled loan provider. Equity trading has been a disappointment throughout the sector.

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