S&P 500 companies are expected on average to grow their earnings by 6.3 percent in the December quarter. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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U.S. President Donald Trump's administration is only hours old, but already a small parade of S&P 500 companies' chiefs have voiced optimism that his promised tax cuts, stimulus spending and deregulation will boost corporate profits."There is certainly more reason to be optimistic as we enter 2017 than there was at the beginning of 2016," Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman said Tuesday after his bank said profit doubled in the fourth quarter. He pointed to factors including a surge in consumer confidence after the Nov. 8 election and lower taxes promised by Trump.Just underway, fourth-quarter earnings reporting season is providing a glimpse of what major large companies expect under Trump, and their take is largely positive so far.With corporate earnings already on the mend after a slump in oil prices and a strong dollar last year, S&P 500 companies are expected on average to grow their earnings by 6.3 percent in the December quarter and 13.6 percent in the March quarter, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.Banks have led gains, with investors betting Trump will roll back regulations passed by President Barack Obama following the 2008 financial crisis that many investors say went too far.Over the past two months, Trump has publicly targeted and threatened a range of multinationals, including Ford Motor, General Motors, Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin.
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