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This Counterintuitive Pattern Tells You Everything You Need To Know...

If you predicted that earnings expectations were too optimistic and doomed to be revised downward, then you were right.

"The estimated earnings decline for Q1 2014 of -1.2% is below the estimate of 4.3% growth at the start of the quarter (December 31)," noted FactSet's John Butters. "Nine of the ten sectors have recorded a decrease in expected earnings growth due to downward revisions to earnings estimates, led by the Materials, Financials, and Consumer Discretionary sectors. The only sector that has seen an increase in projected earnings growth over this period is the Utilities sector."

Earnings and expectations for earnings are arguably the most important drivers of stocks.

So, you'd think that negative revisions would be bad news for stocks.

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