The One Big Concern This Earnings Season

Total earnings for the 136 S&P S&P 500 index members that have reported results already are up +12.6% from the same period last year on +5.9% higher revenues, with 69.1% beating EPS estimates and 60.3% beating revenue estimates.

This is a notably weaker showing than we have seen from the same group of 136 index members in other recent periods, as the comparison chart below shows.

Global economic slowdown has emerged as a recurring theme this earnings season for companies in a variety of industries. Apple (AAPL) got the ball rolling on the global growth question when it came out with a negative pre-announcement in early January, with company specifically pointing to weakness in China as a major reason.

Many other companies since then, including Caterpillar (CAT), Nvidia (NVDA) and others have cited the same reason(s) for their weak outlook.

This global growth uncertainty is showing up lowered earnings estimates for the current and coming quarters, as a result of which the earnings growth trajectory this year is on a steady downtrend, as the chart below shows

As you can see here, earnings growth has turned negative for the first quarter of 2019. This negative revisions trend is my one big concern about overall earnings picture.

For a detailed look at the Q3 earnings season, please check out our weekly Earnings Trends report >>> Earnings Growth Slowing Down

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