U.S. Corporate Profits Tank

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 22:  A FedEx worker steps out of his delivery truck on June 22, 2011 in San Francisco, California.  FedEx Corp. reported a strong fourth quarter with earnings of $558 million, or $1.75 per share compared to $419 million, or $1.33 per share one year ago.  (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

    Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

    A slowing global economy could be contributing to some of the biggest American companies posting their first quarterly earnings decline since 2009. Soaring corporate profits had been the one bright spot in the midst of a grim recovery. Decreased global demand is driving a downturn at companies like FedEx, Intel, and the British luxury brand Burberry. In response to the slow growth, the Federal Reserve announced Thursday that it was beginning another round of stimulus efforts. “A lot of the profit gain you had in the last few years was a bounce from the recession and a result of very aggressive cost-cutting,” said Ethan Harris, Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s chief United States economist. “Those factors are going to be very hard to replicate.”

    Read it at The New York Times