Decline in Profits Slows

By Stephen Grocer

Sept 12 (WSJ) — Analysts expect S&P 500 companies to report that revenue grew by 2.6% in the third quarter from the year-earlier period, according to FactSet. That would end a six-quarter period of sales contraction. Importantly, sales estimates for S&P 500 companies improved slightly since the third quarter began and companies began reporting second-quarter earnings. On June 30, analysts expected revenue to increase 2.5%, according to FactSet. Typically, the trend is toward worsening sales expectations as the quarter progresses. Analysts are still estimating companies in the S&P 500 will report a 2% decline in earnings for this quarter.