The S&P 500 is expected to post earnings growth of 14.23 percent for the third quarter of 2011, according to S&P Capital IQ Consensus Earnings Report. This will represent the eighth consecutive quarter of double-digit earnings per share gains. Although analysts have lowered Q3 earnings estimates by more than 2 percent to 14.23 percent from 16.94 percent on July 2011, nine out of ten sectors are expected to show gains.Estimates indicate energy and material stocks have the highest EPS growth rate, up 52 percent and 31 percent from the same period in Q3 2010. In terms of price-to-earnings valuations, four sectors have ratios below that of the S&P 500 index (14.5x): energy, technology, materials and industrials.
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