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If the index were beating estimates by the recent median, fourth-quarter profit growth would now be estimated at 17.4 percent instead of 15.5 percent, said David Aurelio, senior research analyst at Refinitiv. The inability of the financials sector to meaningfully outdo earnings expectations is at least partly to blame for the slower-than-usual pickup in the growth rate, he said. With results in from 66 percent of the S&P 500 financials, the sector’s median earnings surprise is just 0.4 percent. That’s on track to be well below the sector’s 4.4 percent median surprise of the last eight quarters.
Also affecting the fourth-quarter’s growth rate, profit estimates for the sterling alligator cufflinks energy sector were still falling in recent weeks, following a 38 percent drop in U.S, oil prices in the fourth quarter, analysts said, Oil prices have recovered somewhat this year, and Exxon Mobil and Chevron both reported stronger-than-expected results on Friday, At the same time, the percentage of reports beating expectations for the fourth quarter - 70.9 percent - so far is below the 78 percent average of the past four quarters, based on Refinitiv’s data..
Meanwhile, estimated first-quarter profit growth has fallen to just 0.7 percent from 3.5 percent about three weeks ago, as the benefits from the tax cuts recede. First-quarter forecasts for the energy and technology sectors have fallen the most, with analysts now expecting year-over-year energy earnings to decline 10.8 percent in the first quarter and those for technology to fall by 5.4 percent. “On a quarterly basis, 1Q19 is emerging as the low point for growth embedded in consensus forecasts,” Lori Calvasina, head of U.S. equity strategy for RBC Capital Markets in New York, wrote in a note this week. “Still positive, but just barely.”.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bond yields rose and stock sterling alligator cufflinks markets mostly edged higher on Friday after U.S, employment and manufacturing data underscored a strong economy with little wage inflation, but a gloomy outlook from Amazon.com gave investors pause, U.S, job growth surged in January, with employers hiring the most workers in 11 months, the Labor Department said, pointing to underlying strength in the economy despite an uncertain outlook that has left the Federal Reserve wary about more interest rate hikes this year..
The employment report showed a tepid gain in hourly earnings while the ISM “prices paid” index slipped more than expected, the latest data that show a modest U.S. inflationary pace. Prices in the U.S. futures markets indicate traders see no rate hikes ahead. Short-term futures in fact show they remain convinced the U.S. central bank’s next move will be a rate cut rather than a hike. Stocks on Wall Street pared early session gains to close near break-even while European markets closed a bit higher.
MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe rose 0.02 percent and emerging market stocks fell 0.03 percent, Earlier in Europe, the pan-European STOXX 600 index closed up 0.21 percent, Amazon.com posted record sales and profit during the holiday season, but its shares fell 5.38 percent after its quarterly sterling alligator cufflinks sales forecast fell short of Wall Street estimates, The e-commerce giant was easily the biggest drag on the Nasdaq and S&P 500, while consumer discretionary stocks fell 1.77 percent, the biggest losing sector on the benchmark index..
Amazon’s results suggested U.S. consumers may be spending less, a potential sign of a slowing economy, said Cliff Hodge, director of investments at Cornerstone Wealth. “They’ve been in a very strong environment, but you can see things start to slow down a little bit,” Hodge said. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 64.22 points, or 0.26 percent, to 25,063.89. The S&P 500 gained 2.43 points, or 0.09 percent, to 2,706.53 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 17.87 points, or 0.25 percent, to 7,263.87.
While fourth-quarter results have mostly beaten expectations, there have been 27 negative earnings pre-announcements issued by companies in the S&P 500 for the first quarter, compared with nine positive, Refinitiv data show, The negative-to-positive ratio is now 3.0, which is above the long-term average of 2.7 and above the prior four-quarter average of 1.5, Refinitiv said, The estimated first-quarter earnings growth rate for the S&P 500 companies has declined to 0.7 percent from 5.3 percent on Jan 1, Refinitiv sterling alligator cufflinks said..