Goldman Sachs Traded Profitably EVERY DAY Last Quarter

From DealBreaker.com (via CrossingWallStreet):

Goldman Sachs just revealed in an SEC filing that its traders made money on every single trading day last quarter, a record for the firm. Net revenue for trading was $25 million or higher in all of the first quarter’s 63 trading days with 35 of those days bringing in more $100 million, according to the filing.

That’s pretty amazing. They didn’t have ANY down days? How is this possible? Is the new Goldman Sachs playing it safe? I thought they were doing high risk trades? Were they just lucky? Do they have one big positive trade making up for the losses? Are they rigging the game?

I think this is the graph from the filing that the original posters are referring to.

The following chart sets forth the frequency distribution of our daily trading net revenues for substantially all inventory positions included in VaR for the quarter ended March 2010:
gs-trading-revenue

As part of our overall risk control process, daily trading net revenues are compared with VaR calculated as of the end of the prior business day. Trading losses incurred on a single day did not exceed our 95% one-day VaR during the first quarter of 2010.

I had forgotten what VaR stood for; it’s “Value at Risk”. Thanks, Wikipedia.

Also of note to me is how pro-Goldman the comments seemed at the end of the DealBreaker post. There are likely a lot of traders/investors in the mix who seem to think that if you are smart enough to make money, you deserve it… perhaps a little naive (even at this time?) that people in power wouldn’t take unfair advantage to make money.

I don’t want to imply that Goldman is for sure doing something illegal or immoral, but I think it is okay to be a little skeptical and think about it. I do think it is also very possible that Goldman Sachs is just doing well like most other people’s portfolios were before last week.

But I would be interested in hearing people’s intelligent thoughts on how their trading activities could go 90 days without a single down day.

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