Definition of 'Headline Earnings'
A basis for measuring earnings per share implemented by the Institute of Investment Management and Research. This method accounts for all the profits and losses from operational, trading, and interest activities, that have been discontinued or acquired at any point during the year. Excluded from this figure are profits or losses associated with the sale or termination of discontinued operations, fixed assets or related businesses, or from any permanent devaluation or write off of their values.
Investopedia explains 'Headline Earnings'
Headline earnings provides a stringent measurement tool. Investors can use it to compare and contrast different companies according to the standard method of accounting for net income (and EPS).
Some companies report headline earnings per share in addition to required EPS figures.