Is The Market Cheap?
Overly optimistic expectations are commonplace in non-recessionary periods, and confirming what we discussed here, estimates have continued to decline over the past few quarters while markets have pushed higher. In fact, as JPMorgan notes, and despite the protestations of the commission-takers, S&P 500 EPS are now forecast to be less than they were at the previous peak in 2007/2008. Of course, the multiple expansion argument comes to save them but we note that given where we are in the profit cycle with margins at their current levels (as discussed here) the majority of earnings growth moving forward must come from revenues rather than margin expansion. Revenues for the S&P 500 have historically grown in-line with nominal global GDP, so let's hope that FDX, CAT, and ORCL are all one-offs. So given indices are at all-time highs but EPS expectations are well below the previous peak - we wonder just how this market is deemed 'cheap'?
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