The world's economic troubles since the second quarter began have done a number on Q2 earnings growth estimates for the S&P 500. At the start of March, year-over-year S&P 500 Q2 earnings growth (bottom up) was expected to be +1.2%. From the start of March through mid-April, this growth estimate steadily increased to a high of +2%, but since then we've seen pretty much a straight line lower. As of this week, Q2 earnings for the S&P 500 are expected to decline 1.1% versus Q2 2011.
Below is a table showing current Q2 earnings growth estimates for the ten S&P 500 sectors as well as where they stood at the start of March. As shown, 8 of 10 sectors have seen earnings growth estimates drop off, with Materials, Energy, Consumer Discretionary and Financials seeing the biggest drops. Two sectors have actually seen growth expectations increase, however. These two sectors are Utilities and Technology -- an interesting pair.