While as Bloomberg reports the EPS beat to miss ratio so far is 68%:32%, the scariest statistic of the day goes to Deutsche Bank who said that "The beat-to-miss ratio... is running 41%:59% for revenue." This means nearly 50% more misses than beats in the earnings season so far. DB continues: "Recall that Q2 was also one where we saw better EPS beat but weaker revenue performance so it seems that companies have been eking out earnings by squeezing costs and wages." Now as every entry level analysts, Treasurer and CFO knows, there are 1001 ways to boost ESP cut corporate overhead (and those exclude accounting gimmicks, ahem all banks and GE), chief among them of course is laying people off and replacing them with part-timers and temps (something that has been going on in the US for 3 years now as we first showed in 2010), there is precisely zero way to hide the fact that there is simply less demand for products and services at the very top level in a world in which 2% growth, formerly known as stall speed, is the New Killing it, and in which real disposable income just turned negative once again, not to mention the endless collapse in average hourly earnings.
Y/Y change in real disposable income:
Y/Y change in average hourly earnings:
Source: St Louis Fed