U.S. Corporate Profits Tank

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.”