Apple is the second largest stock in the S&P 500, and it is by far the largest company in the information technology sector.
As such, it has a huge impact on aggregate earnings growth.
The iPhone maker is scheduled to report its Q1 earnings next Tuesday. And analysts expect earnings per share to fall to $10.03 from $12.30 a year ago.
"As a result of this expected decrease in EPS and Apple’s earnings weight in the index, the company is projected to be the largest contributor to the year-over-year decline in earnings projected for the Information Technology sector in the first quarter," says FactSet's John Butters. "The earnings growth rate for the Information Technology sector is -4.0%. If Apple is excluded, the earnings growth for the sector improves to 0.2%."
Here's a look at three and a half years of IT sector earnings growth with and without Apple.