Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening bell in New York in this April 12, 2016, file photo. The S&P 500 is close to its record high as earnings season heats up, but one of the major drivers of the market’s advance – stock buybacks – looks to be sagging. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/Files

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Earnings for S&P 500 .SPX companies are seen increasing for the fourth quarter over a year earlier, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Earnings for the quarter are now expected to have increased 0.7% from the year-ago quarter, based on results from 193 S&P 500 companies and estimates for the rest.

At the start of the month, analysts were expecting a 0.3% year-over-year decline in fourth-quarter earnings, per Refinitiv’s data, and investors had been keeping a close eye on fourth-quarter results following a slight year-over-year decline in S&P 500 third-quarter earnings.

Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama



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