Scaled Earnings Surprise

What is the definition of Scaled Earnings Surprise?

Scaled unexpected earnings is a means of comparing the level of earnings surprise to the amount of disagreement between various analysts (since a wide range of expectations has different implications for what is “unexpected”). This is done by dividing the percentage earnings surprise by the standard deviation of analyst earnings forecasts.

Thus, if the earnings surprise is £0.05 and the standard deviation of analyst estimates was £0.03, the scaled earnings surprise is £0.05/£0.03 = 1.67.


Stockopedia explains Scaled Earnings Surprise...

Another related approach - Standardised Unexpected Earnings - is to divide it by the standard deviation of earnings surprises measured over some historic period (e.g the previous 10 years). For example, Cisco was once said to consistently beat earnings estimates by a penny. Thus, if the company did beat by a penny it was hardly unexpected. Consider a stock that had a £0.03 earnings surprise, and that the standard deviation of past earnings surprises is £0.05. The surprise is smaller than normal, and the standardized earnings surprise would be £0.03/£0.05 = 0.6.

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