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Three months of a year, often abbreviated as "Q." Q1 is January, February, and March; Q2 is April, May, and June; and so forth. Publicly traded companies must report on their earnings and other business performance measures every three months. Analysts also use quarters to measure performance internally. For example, one might compare sales in Q1 of 2009 to those in Q1 of 2008 to measure the company's health without having to account for seasonal variance. Often, quarters are abbreviated along with the calendar year; for example, the second quarter of 2006 is expressed as Q2 2006 or Q2/06.


1. One quarter of a point. For bond quotes, a quarter represents one quarter of 1% of par, or $2.50. Thus, a bond quoted at 91 2/4 is being offered for $917.50.
2. A 3-month period that represents 25% of a fiscal year.


The financial world splits up its calendar into four quarters, each three months long.

If January to March is the first quarter, April to June is the second quarter, and so on, though a company's first quarter does not have to begin in January.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requires all publicly held US companies to publish a quarterly report, officially known as Form 10-Q, describing their financial results for the quarter. These reports and the predictions that market analysts make about them often have an impact on a company's stock price.

For example, if analysts predict that a certain company will have earnings of 55 cents a share in a quarter, and the results beat those expectations, the price of the company's stock may increase. But if the earnings are less than expected, even by a penny or two, the stock price may drop, at least for a time.

However, this pattern doesn't always hold true, and other forces may influence investor sentiment about the stock.


One-fourth of a year. For 2007, January, February, and March would be written as 1Q07; April,May,and June would be 2Q07,and so on.

References in periodicals archive ?
In first two quarts they scored 11 goals to register their dominance.
Le FUS de Rabat a ouvert le bal des quarts de finale de la Coupe du Trone.
En depit de la fatigue suite au match livre hier dimanche contre le Burkina Faso (84-63), alors que les Algeriens ont beneficie d'une journee de plus de repos, le cinq marocain a assure l'essentiel en venant a bout des Fennecs qui sont parvenus a recoller au score au terme du 3eme quart avec 18 a 26 et meme menant avec une avance de trois points (49-52).
Et si l'on s'en refere au reglement applique a la lettre par le Grand Chelem parisien, le natif de Manacor heriterait donc de la tete de serie numero cinq et aurait donc une chance sur quatre de croiser un certain Novak Djokovic en quarts.
Salt: Add 1/2 cup of kosher or sea salt to one quart water.
5 quarts per person, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.
Like his best seller, Sleep Demons: An Insomniac's Memoir, Bill Hayes's Five Quarts walks a high-tension wire between the intimate details of his life--chiefly, the medical odyssey he has shared with his HIV-positive partner of 15 years, Steve--and a larger inquiry into the cultural significance of blood, from the history of bloodletting to Leeuwenhoek's 17th-century discovery of red blood cells to an explanation of how Queen Victoria spread hemophilia through the royal families of Europe.
We each have, on average, 5 quarts of it, coursing through 60,000 miles of arteries, veins, and capillaries.
Without calling ahead, I'd driven to Polly's and dropped off three quarts of vegetable-beef soup.
Despite easy availability, per-capita consumption has dropped to 133 quarts from a peak above 165 quarts in the 1980s, sending the former world champions in Germany to third place behind the Czech Republic -- at 159 quarts -- and Ireland.
In a 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat, bring 2 quarts water to a boil; add ravioli.