Over the past few months, U.S. economic data has been much more resilient than the rest of the world, and this had led to stronger earnings growth and revisions for American companies, according to Credit Suisse.
Part of the reason that U.S. companies are outperforming their international peers is tax reform.
According to a note from Credit Suisse, expectations for revenue, earnings and earnings per share (EPS) growth in the first-quarter for developed markets outside the U.S. and Canada (EAFE) were 3.9%, 6.9%, and 6.4%, respectively. Among the companies that have already released their quarterly reports, EPS results beat by 1.5%, with revenues surprising by 0.4%.
European and Japanese earnings are projected to increase by 7.2% and 6.1%, respectively. So far, European companies have exceeded bottom-line projections by 2.2% whereas Japanese firms disappointed by -0.6%.
For the U.S., S&P 500 expectations were for revenue, earnings and EPS of 8.4%, 24.1%, and 25.6%, respectively, with tax reform adding 7.6% to the bottom line. But, even without tax reform, U.S. companies should have outperformed their international counterparts – without the cut in the corporate tax rate earnings per share growth would have been 16.5%.
Last December, President Trump signed into law a massive tax reform package that included slashing the corporate tax rate to 21% from 35%.
On Tuesday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the president’s economic plan is starting to kick in, adding that it’s possible the nation could have a GDP number that surprises on the upside “very significantly.”