Category Archives: earnings per share

4/9/16: Earnings per Share

You know the meme: corporate sector is healthy world over and the only reason there is no investment anywhere in sight on foot of the wonderfully robust earnings is that… err… political uncertainty around the U.S. elections. Because, of course, political uncertainty is everything…

Except when you look at EPS

H/T @zerohedge 

Now, what the above is showing?
1) EPS is down in the politically ‘uncertain’ U.S.
2) EPS is even more down in the politically less ‘uncertain’ Europe (though you can read on that subject here:
3) EPS has been falling off the cliff since the ‘political uncertainty’ (apparently) set in 4Q 2012 in the U.S. One guess is the markets expected, correctly, the epic battle between The Joker and the Corporate Godzilla back then. And in Europe, since mid 2013, apparently, markets had foresight of who knows what back then.

But never mind, there is no secular stagnation anywhere, because earnings are, apparently very very healthy… very robust… very encouraging… All of which means just one thing: the markets are not overpriced or overbought. Pass de Kool-Aid, lads!

16/5/16: Earnings Surprises and Share Price Impact

A very interesting summary graph from Factset on the impact of earnings performance relative to consensus expectations on share prices

In basic terms, upside to consensus is systemically rewarded, while downside impact decays over time. The chart reflects 5 years worth of data, so capturing the period of declining earnings, where positive surprises should naturally be priced at a premium. The question the data above raises is whether coincident or subsequent shares repurchases provide support to the upside for underperforming firms and/or for outperforming firms.

Remember, recent McKinsey research showed that deviations from consensus forecast do not matter that much when it comes to underwriting longer term returns: