Caterpillar Profits Surge But Disappoint Wall Street

Caterpillar Profits Surge But Disappoint Wall Street

Emerging markets help offset weak U.S. recovery.

Caterpillar said its second-quarter profits surged 44% from a year ago to $1.01 billion, but the results still fell short of analysts' expectations.

Revenues in the April-June period were $14.23 billion, which the company described as an all-time record, and an increase of 37% from second-quarter 2010 revenues of $10.40 billion.

Earnings per share came in at $1.72, failing to reach Wall Street analysts' consensus forecasts of $1.79. Shares of Caterpillar fell 5.7% in opening trade after the results were released.

Strong sales in Asia and other emerging markets -- notably China -- helped offset the impact of a weak economic recovery in the United States, chief executive Doug Oberhelman said in a statement.

Caterpillar said it posted record revenues in the second quarter.
"While we've seen some softening of growth in China, dealer deliveries to end users were up in the second quarter of 2011 compared with the second quarter of last year and grew at a faster rate than the overall industry in China," he said.

"In our view, China is doing a good job of balancing growth and inflation, and our expectations for China remain positive."

The March earthquake and tsunami in Japan had a $200 million negative impact on Caterpillar's second-quarter sales and lowered operating profit by around $60 million, Oberhelman said.

Shares of Peoria, Ill.-based Caterpillar, which makes mining and construction equipment, are seen as particularly sensitive to global economic trends.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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