What is an Earnings Surprise?
Casual investors need to know what an earnings surprise is, and how it may affect their investment decisions.
How are earnings announced?
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires companies to publish their unaudited financial results in quarterly statements (called a 10-Q) no later than 35-45 days after the end of each quarter, and an annual 10-K statement at the end of the financial year. Larger companies tend to present their quarterly results via publicly accessible conference call and the web, along with other relevant information (profit and loss, operating expenses, issues that affected earnings, future plans, etc.).
Firms may submit a non-timely (NT) filing if results must be postponed. The NT filing gives firms an additional five days to submit. Financial analysts typically consider an NT filing to be an indicator of trouble for the firm, and lower expectations, and projections of stock price, as a result. Continue reading