* [S&P 500 quarterly earnings, change from a year earlier](https://i.imgur.com/GiijLSO.png)
* [S&P 500 quarterly earnings, change from a year earlier by sector](https://i.imgur.com/PIrYjEh.png)
>Earnings for the nation’s biggest companies are poised to show their first collective increase in a year, helped in part by strong consumer spending this summer.
>The members of the S&P 500 are on pace to collectively report a 3.7% rise in earnings for the year’s third quarter, the first such increase since the year-ago third quarter. Revenue is on track to grow 2.3% from a year ago, according to FactSet.
>Driving the profit gains was consumer spending, as Americans continued to dine out, take trips and buy online.
>“Customer demand for us remains strong,” Starbucks
Chief Executive Laxman Narasimhan said on the company’s earnings call Thursday. “We’re not really seeing any change in the sentiment in our customer base.”
>The two most profitable sectors in the S&P 500 index were communication services and consumer discretionary.
>Among the companies in those two sectors are restaurant operators such as McDonald’s and Starbucks; internet giants like Amazon.com and Alphabet; travel-related firms such as Airbnb and Marriott International; and media owners like Comcast and Netflix.