WallStreet at best : Analysts lowering expectations to make companies numbers look good!!!
Expect tepid earnings for the reporting season that kicks off Tuesday, say Wall Street analysts who have grown increasingly pessimistic over the past three months.
Fourth-quarter earnings for S&P 500 /quotes/zigman/3870025 SPX -0.39% companies are expected to grow 2.8% compared to the same period in 2011, according to Thomson Reuters data. But keep in mind that this estimate has dropped from 9.9% at the beginning of the quarter to 2.8% today.
Read more on the sectors with the steepest downgrades.
Click to Play Alcoa to kick off earningsAlcoa fourth-quarter results on Tuesday kick off earnings season and the Consumer Electronics Show heats up Las Vegas.
In keeping with tradition, aluminum producer Alcoa Inc. /quotes/zigman/246295/quotes/nls/aa AA -0.32% will unofficially kick off earnings season with its results on Tuesday after the market closes. Alcoa’s results notwithstanding, a number of companies have actually already reported results in the so-called preseason.
And 62% of the 21 companies that have already reported fourth-quarter earnings to this point have topped analyst estimates, matching the long-term average beat rate, according to Thomson Reuters.
“If it should continue at the rate of 62%, the blended earnings growth estimate will likely improve slightly as more companies beat estimates than miss them,” Thomson Reuters analysts wrote in a report. “This would fit in with what analysts see as a slow emergence from the earnings trough in the third quarter, with single-digit earnings growth to finish out 2012 and during the first half of 2013.”