By Peter Rudegeair 

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reported sharply higher profits for the first quarter, benefiting from a turbocharged market and an economic recovery.

Goldman reported quarterly profit of $6.84 billion, or $18.60 a share, on revenue of $17.7 billion. Both measures were up significantly from a year ago -- when the bank posted profit of $1.2 billion on revenue of $8.7 billion -- and exceeded the expectations of analysts polled by FactSet, who forecast profit of $10.22 a share on revenue of $12.56 billion.

The first three months of 2021 were a frenetic period for banks' capital markets and trading arms. Reddit-reading retail traders sent so-called meme stocks to new heights. Record amounts of money poured into blank-check firms, several of which announced deals during the quarter to bring fast-growing companies including Social Finance Inc. and Lucid Motors Inc. to the public markets.

Goldman thrived in that environment. Trading revenue rose 47% from a year ago to $7.6 billion. The firm's investment bankers brought in $3.8 billion in fees arranging mergers and stock and bond offerings.

Shares in Goldman have risen 24% since the start of 2021 and hit an all-time high of $348.81 last month.

Write to Peter Rudegeair at Peter.Rudegeair@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 14, 2021 07:58 ET (11:58 GMT)

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