Hi... I need clarification on the usage of the past perfect tense.
I have read that the past perfect must be used to describe an event that occured before another subsequent event in the past.
Then i came accross this in the OG:
The company announced that its profits declined much less in the second quarter than analysts had expected it to and its business will improve in the second half of the year.
B) had expected and that its business would improve.
Ok..this is what i'm confused about:
The sentence above refers to the past and the future... so why do we need "had" before "expected" .. Since the two actions are not both in the past, why can't we use "expected" (simple past)?
I think it means that
1. Company announced that (whatever) than analysts had expected to.
2. Company announced that its business would improve.
In 1, you need "had" because analysts already finished expecting before the company's announcement.
It sounds stupid, but can someone explain why it's "would improve" over "will improve"? I mean, I know that it's not a fact, but couldn't the company be attempting to make a strong statement by using "will", as if it's a factual statement? ...or am I over-analyzing it?