3 things to watch this earnings season

April 8, 2015 10:12 AM

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There's a cloud hanging over the first-quarter earnings season, as analysts are forecasting the first negative quarter for profits since the Great Recession, sparking fears of an "earnings recession."

Heading into Wednesday's unofficial kickoff to the earnings season when aluminum producer Alcoa (AA) reports, analysts expect earnings for the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index to contract 2.8%, which would mark the first profit contraction since the third quarter of 2009.

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