The 3rd quarter managed to break a string of 6 consecutive quarters of declining earnings. Another highlight of recent earnings history compliments of analysis done by 720global.com shows that for the Standard and Poors 500 Index through the magic of revisions that aggregate earnings growth has exceed consensus final earnings every quarter since at least the middle of 2012. On a year ago basis the study found that earnings estimates started out on average with 14.76% growth. Looking at 5-year average earnings growth and the final real earnings growth figure came in at just 3.82% some 75% below the overly optimistic original estimates. The report went on to note that starting from the initial high water mark earnings estimates were by and large revised steadily lower until the actual figure was a small beat to the substantially lowered initial estimate. Something clearly illustrated on a year ago, 6-months out, 3-months out and quarter end basis as per the report. How does it go, “you can’t trust analysts in a bear market and you don’t need them in a bull market”.