Stocktake: A record-breaking cheating season

Most US firms have reported earnings and a record 82% have beaten estimates

The ‘Fearless Girl’ statue stands in front of the New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street. Photograph: Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images

The ‘Fearless Girl’ statue stands in front of the New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street. Photograph: Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images

 

US earnings season is shaping up to be a record-breaking one. No, we’re not talking about record pandemic-related losses – we’re talking about the number of companies beating estimates.

Most companies have now reported earnings and a record 82 per cent have beaten estimates, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices’ Howard Silverblatt.

Of course, earnings have been awful, just not as awful as companies had indicated; estimates had been lowered by 48 per cent, allowing firms to “beat” deliberately lowballed numbers.

Every quarter a majority of companies beat these rigged expectations; little wonder that earnings season is known as cheating season. 

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.