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Real Time Insight

If it wasn't for the Finance sector, second quarter earnings season would be a dud. According to Zacks Director of Research Sheraz Mian in his weekly Earnings Outlook article, total earnings for the Finance sector in Q2 are up an impressive +30% year-over-year. But excluding Finance, total earnings for the rest of the S&P 500 companies would be down -2.8%.

So why were earnings in the Finance sector so hot?

These two charts will tell you pretty much everything you need to know:

(Improving credit quality is a good thing, but as a bank, I'd rather have strong loan growth and net interest margin expansion boosting my bottom line than simply taking a lower provision for loan losses... but I digress.)

Mr. Mian also points out in his article that the Finance sector has reclaimed its leadership role in the S&P 500, as it now contributes a higher percentage of earnings than any other sector for the first time since the financial crisis. Finance is expected to account for 19.2% of total S&P 500 earnings in 2013 compared to Technology's 18%.

So does the lack of earnings growth outside of Finance concern you? How about the fact that Finance is once again the largest sector in the S&P 500?

Chime in below.

Zacks Releases Their 7 Best Stocks for November, 2014

These 7 were hand-picked from the list of 220 Zacks Rank #1 Strong Buys with earnings estimate revisions that are sweeping upward. Their stock prices are expected to rise sooner than the others.

Today, this Special Report is available to new Zacks.com visitors free of charge.

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