by Michael VodickaOctober 22, 2010 | Comments : 0 Recommended this article: (0)
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Caterpillar, Inc. manufactures and sells construction and mining equipment worldwide. The company was founded in 1925 and has a market cap of $50 billion.
We just got an update on CAT's business when the company reported solid Q2 results on Oct. 21 that came in well ahead of expectations.
Revenue for the period was up 53% from last year to $11.1 billion. Earnings also looked great, coming in at $1.22, 12% ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate and more than double last years 64 cents in the same period. The company now has an average earnings surprise of 25.5% over the last four quarters.
The company noted that it continues to see robust demand from emerging markets, where its machinery division saw sales in Latin America increase 121% from last year. Domestic demand has been strong too, with North American machinery sales up 89% after showing steep declines in the recession of 2009.
CAT also continued to pay down its debt during the quarter, with its total debt load falling $1.5 billion to $20.3 billion.
With a solid quarter in hand on surging demand, Caterpillar went ahead and raised its 2010 outlook. The company now expects revenue between $41 and $42 billion, up from the previous $39 to $42 billion, with a new earnings range between $3.80 and $4.00, up from the previous range of $3.15 to $3.85.
With a forward P/E of 21.5X, CAT trades at a premium to its peer average of 18X. But with a next-year estimate calling for 39% growth that will most likely be revised higher on the good quarter, CAT's PEG ratio of .55% is deep in value territory.
CAT has been strong for the last 18 months as the global economy has strengthened, recently moving within striking distance of the multi-year high at $81.19. But in spite of the nice gains, the stochastic below the chart is signaling that shares are trading safely away from over-bought territory, take a look below.
Michael Vodicka is the Momentum Stock Strategist for Zacks.com. He is also the Editor in charge of the new Zacks Momentum Trader Service.
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