Caterpillar posts huge Q2 financial results

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Caterpillar has released its 2017 second-quarter financial results and the numbers reveal sales and revenue were up by almost US$1 billion over forecasts


  • Sales and revenue up US$1 billion over projections

  • Company has undertaken large restructure

  • Still facing legal issues

The US-based company registered total sales and revenue of US$11.331 billion for the quarter, which is also up US$1 billion over the same period last year.

Caterpillar shareholders will also be happy as the company’s stock delivers a profit-per-share of US$1.49 per share. The investor cash dividend was also raised during the quarter.

 "Our team delivered an impressive quarter," Caterpillar CEO Jim Umpleby says. "As demand increased, we continued to control costs and generated higher profit margins.

"While a number of our end markets remain challenged, construction in China and gas compression in North America were highlights in the quarter," he says. "Mining and oil-related activities have come off of recent lows, and we are seeing improving demand for construction in most regions."

The positive news follows a tumultuous period for the machinery giant. In early 2017 it announced it would be relocating its global headquarters from Peoria, Illinois to the Chicago suburb of Deerfield after more than 100 years in the rural city.

Caterpillar has also undergone a massive organisational restructure in recent years, with more than 20 manufacturing plants either closed or consolidated since 2012 around the globe. As a result, the company has shed more than 31,000 jobs worldwide.

The latest results have prompted Cat’s accountants to adjust financial predictions for the remainder of the year, with total-year results expected to be between US$42 billion and US$44 billion, which is a $3 billion increase over initial predictions.

"Given our performance in the first half of the year and current quotation and ordering activity, we are confident in raising our full-year 2017 outlook," Umpleby says.

"During the second half of 2017, we anticipate making targeted investments in initiatives that are important to our future competitiveness, including enhanced digital capabilities and accelerating technology updates to our products."

On the downside, the company is facing legal scrutiny recently from the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Department of Justice (DoJ) over possible tax avoidance involving the use of one of Caterpillar’s subsidiaries in Switzerland. This matter is still ongoing.


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