That's a wrap: Another earnings season has come to a close. According to the latest numbers from FactSet, 78% of S&P 500 companies reported a positive earnings per share surprise for the third quarter, while 61% reported a positive sales surprise.
As we've discussed before in this space, Morningstar doesn't emphasize one quarter's worth of earnings when determining a stock's economic moat rating and calculating its fair value estimate. Rather, we focus on a company's long-term sustainable competitive advantages and free cash flows. That being said, a company might release information when reporting earnings that will lead an analyst to change his or her moat rating or fair value estimate of the company, or to reconsider his or her take on a particular industry.
Susan Dziubinski does not own shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar's editorial policies.