There are at least three things to say about low oil prices and the strong dollar: 1) they have been bad for S&P 500 profits; 2) they have kept inflation low; and 3) most experts and policymakers agree that the effects are transitory.
Earnings are estimated to have declined during the third quarter, an unfavorable development that may be exacerbating the turbulence in the markets. And it’s worth noting that extended periods of broad-based declining earnings have been associated with recessions.
However, the economy managed to escape recessions during periods when it was the energy sector leading the way down. As such, strategists believe it’s important to consider what earnings look like excluding the recent drags from oil prices.
Deutsche Bank’s Binky Chadha offers this chart tracking year-over-year earnings growth in aggregate and excluding the impacts of oil and the dollar.
And like that, an estimated 4% drop in earnings becomes an estimated 8% jump.