SP 500 Earnings: 5 of the Top 10 Mega-Caps Report Next Week

Earlier this week, the LSEG put up their quarterly earnings preview, and included within was the “market cap weight vs sector weight” analysis of the 11 SP 500 sectors. (The table was posted here last week. The full article is attached here.)

Tajinder Dhillon, the LSEG executive who’s responsible for prepping and publishing the Russell 2000 and SP 500 earnings reports each week, sent the earnings weights of the top 10 names in the SP 500 last week, so those earnings weights could be compared to their respective market cap weights:


5 of the top 10 SP 500 mega-cap names report this coming week.

  • Apple: mkt cap weight 6.29% vs its earnings weight of 6.7%;
  • Microsoft: mkt cap weight of 7.29% versus its earnings weight of 4.5%;
  • Meta: mkt cap weight of 2.11%, vs its earnings weight of 2.4%;
  • Alphabet: mkt cap weight of 2.14%, vs its earnings weight of 2.1%;
  • Amazon: mkt cap weight of 3.48%, vs its earnings weight of 1.6%;

Apple (AAPL), Meta (META) and Amazon (AMZN) report after the closing bell on February 1 ’24, while Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOG/GOOGL) report after the closing bell on Tuesday, January 30, ’24.

The whole point of this is to give readers the perspective of how the two “weights” relate.

Back in the late 1990’s, the argument against the technology sector in the SP 500, i.e. Intel, Microsoft, Cisco, SunMicro, etc. was that with a 35% market cap weight of 35% , the earnings weight of the technology sector was just 13% – 14%.

A bullish or bearish argument isn’t being bad based solely on this ratio, but readers can tell the ratio is far more “reasonable” today. Of the 5 names listed above, Apple’s earnings weight is larger than it’s market cap weight, (which is truly surprising) while (also surprising), the same can be said for META. Only Amazon’s market cap is more than 2x greater than it’s earnings weight today. (The market cap weight is sourced from Morningstar and final market prices for the SPY portfolio as of 1/25/24.)

It’s normal for the financial sector to have an earnings weight greater than it’s market cap, and that’s true for Berkshire Hathaway. JP Morgan, is actually ranked 12th in the SPY by market cap, but 7th by earnings weight.

This blog will be out with an earnings preview on a number of the above names this weekend.

SP 500 data:

  • The forward 4-quarter estimate (FFQE) fell $0.31 to $242.61 from last week’s $242.92 and Sept 30th’s $232.95;
  • The PE ratio has increased to 20.2x, the first time since 12/15/23 that the SP 500’s PE ratio is above 20x;
  • If the SP 500 closes today at 4,888, the SP 500 earnings yield will have dropped below 5% to 4.96%, it’s lowest close since late December ’23;
  • The 2023 full-year calendar EPS estimate for the SP 500 increased last week to $219.53 vs the prior weeks $219.40;
  • The SP 500 EPS “upside surprise” jumped to +4.2% from last week’s +3.6%, while the revenue upside surprise remains around 1%;
  • The 2024 EPS estimate declined this week, possibly due to cautious guidance for calendar ’24, from $243.17 to $242.61 and Sept ’30th’s estimate of $247.49;

Summary / conclusion: Earnings weight matters to the SP 500, and this coming week. 18.3% of the SP 500’s (only 5 stocks) earnings weight reports in just three days – Tuesday through Thursday. Again, earnings previews for some of the top 10 names will be out this weekend on this blog.

The increase in the SP 500’s upside surprise this week, is a good tell, but guidance matters more. It’s understandable that management’s are being cautious – just look at how many of Wall Street’s best have called for a recession the last 24 months.

IBES data and Refinitiv, have undergone a corporate name change with the start of 2024, hence – although the data will be from the exact same source – the new name for Refinitiv, will be known as LSEG (London Stock Exchange Group – and will be referred to as LSEG going forward.

None of this is advice or a recommendation. Past performance is no guarantee or suggestion of future results. All SP 500 earnings data is sourced from LSEG unless otherwise noted. Capital markets can change quickly for both the good and the bad. Readers should gauge their comfort with their portfolio volatility accordingly, and adjust when necessary.

Thanks for reading.

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