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S&P 500 Earnings Leaderboard: Biggest Surprises Season to Date

As of this past Friday, just over 10% of the S&P 500 companies had reported earnings. This week we will see roughly 30% more of the S&P report.

Here's how things stand so far:

  • Companies Exceeding Estimates: 79%
  • Companies Matching Estimates: 11%
  • Companies Falling Below Estimates: 10%

Compared to the start of last earnings season, the breakdown has shifted with a significantly larger increase in companies beating vs. missing estimates. At the same point last quarter, ~20% of the companies reporting had missed EPS estimates and just over 70% had beaten estimates. The trend is extending from Q1, when only 60% had beaten estimates at this stage of the season.

Monsanto has had the biggest percent surprise to the upside followed by Jabil Circuit and National Semiconductor . In absolute dollars, financials sit atop the leaderboard. After Citigroup's surprise of over $1.3 billion, JP Morgan Chase and Goldman Sachs follow with ~$1.2 billion and ~$500 million surprises.

Earnings Leaderboard - Best Performers (as of 10/16)

Company
Symbol
Sector
Date
EPS Est.
Actual
%Chg
Monsanto MON Materials 10/7/2009 0.01 0.02 100%
Jabil Circuit JBL Tech 9/29/2009 0.08 0.16 100%
National Semiconductor NSM Tech 9/10/2009 0.07 0.13 86%
JP Morgan Chase JPM Financials 10/14/2009 0.52 0.82 58%
Soutwest Airlines LUV Industrials 10/15/2009 0.02 0.03 50%
Thomson Reuters

On the downside, Harley Davidson leads the losers, reporting a -48% miss. In absolute dollars, Bank of America leads with its $433 million negative surprise.

Earnings Leaderboard - Biggest Losers (as of 10/16)

Company
Symbol
Sector
Rpt Date
EPS Est.
Actual
%Chg
Harley Davidson HOG Cons Disc 10/15/2009 0.21 0.11 -48%
Best Buy BBY Cons Disc 9/15/2009 0.42 0.37 -12%
Fastenal FAST Industrials 10/12/2009 0.33 0.32 -3%
Thomson Reuters

Many companies have improved their earnings by cutting costs. Investors are looking for topline growth as a sign that the economy has indeed turned the corner. Continue on to the next page to see the biggest revenue surprises to date as well.

Biggest revenue surprises to date

In percentage and dollar terms, Financials lead in biggest revenue surprises. JP Morgan's 13% or $3.4 billion surprise is the biggest to date.

Revenue Leaderboard - Best Performers (as of 10/16)

Company
Symbol
Sector
Date
Rev Est. ($M)
Actual
%Chg
JP Morgan Chase JPM Financials 10/14/2009 25372 28780 13%
Goldman Sachs GS Financials 10/15/2009 11017 12372 12%
Discover Financial DFS Financials 9/17/2009 1643 1845 12%
Advanced Micro Devices AMD Tech 10/15/2009 1264 1396 10%
Linear Tech LLTC Tech 10/13/2009 216 236 9%
Thomson Reuters

On the downside, Lennar has the biggest percentage surprise, while CNBC parent, General Electric leads in dollar terms missing estimates by $1.7 B.

Revenue Leaderboard - Biggest Losers (as of 10/16)

Company
Symbol
Sector
Rpt Date
Rev Est. ($M)
Actual
%Chg
Lennar LEN Cons Disc 9/21/2009 774 721 -7%
Bank of America BAC Financials 10/16/2009 27610 26035 -6%
Monsanto MON Materials 10/7/2009 1968 1879 -5%
General Electric GE Industrials 10/16/2009 39504 37799 -4%
ConAgra CAG Cons Staples 9/22/2009 3092 2961 -4%
Thomson Reuters

Data Source:Thomson Reuters

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