Fixed income, commodities and currencies (FICC) trading was the biggest casualty, falling 39 per cent compared to the fourth quarter of 2009.
That reflects a tough environment for everyone, but Goldman seems to be faring particularly badly: Deutsche Bank says FICC at its peers was down by a less severe 22 per cent.
Goldman cited subdued client activity in the face of a choppy recovery and a quieter M&A outlook.
But it is unclear whether this is a blip, or a permanent scar caused by the financial crisis.
The fact that Lloyd Blankfein is hiring staff in emerging markets as one-time cash cows stop making hay suggests he is hedging his bets. Investors might want to think about doing the same.