Audit Notes: Not-So-Goldman Advice, One Source Stories, Facebook

Bloomberg reports that even though Goldman Sachs, along with other banks, won on every day at the dog tracks last quarter, its clients haven’t done quite as well if they followed its start-of-the-year advice.

Seven of the investment bank’s nine “recommended top trades for 2010” have been money losers for investors who adopted the New York-based firm’s advice, according to data compiled by Bloomberg from a Goldman Sachs research note sent yesterday. Clients who used the tips lost 14 percent buying the Polish zloty versus the Japanese yen, 9.4 percent buying Chinese stocks in Hong Kong and 9.8 percent trading the British pound against the New Zealand dollar.

— Ah, the Bloomberg one-source special—bottomless source of Audit material. Thanks, guys!

This one quotes some British hedge-fund manager named Hugh Hendry saying China’s headed for a 1920s Japan-style crash, whatever that was. Bloomberg doesn’t give us a lick of Japanese history, which would seem to be pretty essential to a story about how a country is supposedly going to have a 1920s Japan-style crash.

The Wall Street Journal weighs in on the Facebook-privacy story, getting inside the company to show the debates under way:

The site’s privacy travails have rattled Facebook employees and put pressure on Mr. Zuckerberg, who has argued for years that its users should be more open with their information. He has at times over-ruled employees who argue Facebook should make more information private, by default, according to people familiar with the matter. He has instead pushed to offer tools so users can control their information, these people said.

And this appears to be something of a scoop—and it’s good news:

The Federal Trade Commission is taking a close look at how online social networks are using people’s data, and people close to the matter say it is increasingly focused on Facebook.

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Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at Follow him on Twitter at @ryanchittum.