Feb 3, 2020 - Economy

S&P 500 earnings on pace for 4th straight negative quarter

Traders at the New York Stock Exchange

Traders at the New York Stock Exchange on Jan. 8. Photo: Wang Ying/Xinhua via Getty) (Xinhua/Wang Ying via Getty Images

Strong earnings reports from buzzy tech companies like Amazon and Microsoft have dominated headlines, but the numbers for the broader market remain negative.

What's happening: With 45% of S&P 500 having reported earnings, FactSet estimates an overall earnings decline of 0.3% for the quarter.

  • That's smaller than the 1.8% decline its analysis showed during the previous week.

By the numbers: The percentage of companies that have reported actual EPS above estimates is 69%, below the five-year average.

  • In aggregate, companies are reporting earnings that are 4.1% above the estimates, which is also below the five-year average.
  • 65% of companies have reported actual sales above estimates, which is higher than the five-year average.

Between the lines: IT and consumer discretionary companies have delivered the greatest positive earnings surprises, offsetting weakness in the industrials sector.

Go deeper: UBS issues a warning on earnings

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