As second-quarter earnings season winds down, the S&P 500 is basically assured of suffering the first revenue recession since the Great Recession. With 94% of the S&P 500 companies (471 out of 502) having reported results, reported revenue has declined 3.6% from a year ago, according to FactSet. That follows a 2.8% decline in the first quarter. The rule of thumb is, an economic recession is defined as two-straight quarters of gross domestic production contraction. The S&P 500 is currently on course for the first back-to-back quarters of declining revenue since the four-quarter stretch from Q4 2008 to Q3 2009. Since Alcoa Inc. unofficially kicked off the second-quarter reporting season after the July 8 close, the S&P 500 has advanced 2.4%. But for the Dow Jones Industrial Average , since the first component, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. , reported results ahead of the July 14 open, the Dow has lost 2.6%. And although only 11 of the 30 components missed revenue expectations, the stocks of 18 components have declined since they reported results.
Copyright © 2015 MarketWatch, Inc.
Continue Reading Below