Jun 18, 2019 - Economy & Business

The S&P 500's Q1 earnings were a pleasant surprise

With 496 S&P 500 companies having reported first quarter earnings, more than three quarters (75.6%) beat expectations, with Q1 earnings now expected to increase 1.6%, data from Lipper shows.

What it means: That's a far cry from the first stage of an earnings recession analysts feared early in the year.

But, but, but: Investors are hardly out of the woods, as fears are growing about substantiated damage from the U.S.-China trade war, most recently thanks to a report from semiconductor giant Broadcom.

What to watch: CEO Hock E. Tan warned that the second quarter bump the company had projected is now unlikely.

"As a result [of the trade war], demand volatility has increased and our customers are actively reducing inventory levels to manage risks.
This leads us to believe the second half of 2019 will be more in line with the first half as opposed to the previously expected recovery. We now anticipate fiscal 2019 semiconductor solutions segment revenue of $17.5 billion, which translates into a year-over-year decline in the high single digits."

Go deeper: In April, the U.S. had the most Q1 layoffs since 2009

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