`Whisper' forecasts now available to all

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April 18, 2004|By Matthew Kauffman | Matthew Kauffman,The Hartford Courant

Psst. Don't tell anyone, but the whisper numbers are back.

Whisper numbers, those supposedly top-secret earnings forecasts that circulate among Wall Street insiders and wealthy investors, are gaining new attention as the quality of traditional stock analysis has been called into question. But with the Internet, whisper numbers are available to all.

WhisperNumber.com, one of the oldest whisper sites, polls thousands of subscribers every week about imminent earnings reports. With free registration, subscribers can access the consensus sentiment on companies and the broader economy.

Analysts' earnings estimates lately have been more accurate than whispered estimates, according to surveys. But the editors of WhisperNumber.com say that missing or exceeding a whisper estimate has a bigger impact on stock price than missing or exceeding the analysts' estimate.

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