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Banks' earnings stay on a roll as Goldman tops the Street

Goldman reports Q2 beat

Goldman Sachs topped earnings expectations with earnings per share of $3.72 and revenue of $7.93 billion.

Analysts were expecting earnings of $3 a share on revenue of $7.58 billion, according to a Thomson Reuters consensus. For the same quarter a year ago, Goldman reported $1.98 a share on $9.07 billion in revenue.

For most major Wall Street banks, the ongoing earnings season has represented a bit of a rebound. JPMorgan Chase earnings last Thursday easily beat estimates. Wells Fargo matched earnings expectations Friday and Citigroup posted a beat as well. To start this week, Bank of America posted a top- and bottom-line beat Monday.

"Despite the uncertainty created by Brexit, we achieved solid results by continuing to serve our clients across our diversified franchise and by managing our business efficiently," said Lloyd C. Blankfein, chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs.

Goldman Sachs stock is down more than 9 percent so far in 2016. Goldman shares traded down nearly 1 percent heading into the open Tuesday morning.

Goldman's investment banking business brought in $1.79 billion, representing a decrease compared to the same quarter a year ago and an uptick compared to the first quarter of 2016. But the bank's outlook for its investment banking business was not optimistic.

"The firm's investment banking transaction backlog decreased compared with both the end of the first quarter of 2016 and the end of the second quarter of 2015," the bank said in its earnings announcement.

Lloyd Blankfein at the 2015 WEF in Davos, Switzerland.
David A. Grogan | CNBC

The bank said it reduced overall staffing by 5 percent in the second quarter. Also, compensation fell 13 percent compared to the second quarter of 2015, which Goldman attributed to a decrease in net revenue.

The bank's revenue from its fixed income, currency and commodities trading unit was $1.93 billion, 20 percent higher than in the second quarter a year ago and also up compared to the first quarter of this year. Goldman and other big Wall Street banks suffered under-performance in their FICC businesses in the first quarter of this year, which impacted its revenue.