Will Stock Markets Start Selling Off This Week? Analysts Reduced Earnings Growth Expectations For Q1 2013 (to 0.1% from 2.4%), Northeast Blizzard Hurt Sales, Gas Prices Hit New Historic High, Americans Claim Higher Payroll Taxes Already Affect Their Spending…

Monday, February 11, 2013
By Paul Martin

Investmentwatchblog.com
February 11th, 2013

A Crack In The Stock Market’s Foundation Is Getting Bigger

Here’s a metric we’ve been following with interest for the last several weeks.

It’s earnings growth expectations, which have been falling on a weekly basis.

Earnings and earnings expectations are arguably the most important drivers of the stock market.

“Since the end of the fourth quarter (December 31), analysts have also reduced earnings growth expectations for Q1 2013 (to 0.1% from 2.4%) and Q2 2013 (to 5.1% from 6.7%),” wrote FactSet’s John Butters in a note published on Friday. “For Q1 2013, all ten sectors have witnessed a decline in estimated earnings growth, led by the Materials (to 2.1% from 7.2%) and Information Technology (to -2.7% from 1.7%) sectors.”

The Rest…HERE

Just last week, the growth expectations 0.5% for Q1 and 5.4% for Q2.

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