Know Who’s Whispering What before Earning Release

Before a company releases its earning, financial research firms such as Thomson/FirstCall and Reuters survey fund managers and stock analysts to predict what the earning will look like. Stock prices usually move after the earning release, with magnitude depending on the outlook and how far away the true earning is different from consensus estimates. However, it’s not rare to see the stock moves lower even after the earning beats street estimate. The reason? There’s another number the earning doesn’t surpass: the whisper number.

If you are interested in knowing a stock’s whisper number before earning release, there are two websites which publish whisper numbers that are collected from traders:

Both sites have free service, which basically covers the whisper numbers, as well as paid services which include stock analysis and investor sentiments. offers a little more free stuff, such as whisper tracking and earning update. However, to get these free services, you need to register with them and the activation email they promised to send me after my registration never came! I have used three different email address to sign up and none got response from them. An email to their customer service regarding the registration process also seemed to fall on deaf ears.

whisper.jpgHere’s an example how Dell’s whisper number looks like from The whisper numbers are helpful in getting investors sentiments about a company’s earning and future outlook beyond the view of the street, which is sometime biased. Despite the apparent usefulness of whisper numbers, it should only be part of the criteria that an investor needs to consider when making financial decisions.

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2 Responses to “Know Who’s Whispering What before Earning Release”

  1. Steve F |  Feb 13, 2007 at 11:47 am

    I’ve never found much use for numbers, which is just an online poll, but’s commentary is very good and I make almost all my trades based on the comments they post from analysts regarding earnings expectations.

  2. The Sun |  Feb 15, 2007 at 1:25 am

    Steve: Thanks for sharing your experience with us. Personally, I don’t trade a lot and usually hold the stocks I purchased for quite a long time, therefore, I don’t really follow the earning reports very closely. Only use the whisper numbers once in a while to get a sense where the stock will be going and made almost no move whether the true earning is better or worse than the estimates. From your experience, seems to be a better choice between the two.