Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report released on Thursday. They currently have $98.00 price target on the stock.
According to Zacks, “Caterpillar is poised to benefit from the steady growth in construction activities. Asia Pacific is improving consistently, logging a 12% increase in Aug, the best performance this year and marking its sixth consecutive month of growth. The EAME construction industry has also witnessed positive growth in three of the past four months. Also, leading indicators of U.S. non-residential construction signal robust conditions ahead for the domestic construction industry. In line with its efforts to cut down costs, reduce capacity in the wake of lower demand, Caterpillar is shifting production from its Belgium facility. This, along with other restructuring actions as well as share repurchases will help the mining behemoth to weather the weak mining environment. Also, the company has a positive record of earnings surprises in the recent quarters.”
Other equities research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated a buy rating and issued a $87.00 target price on shares of Caterpillar in a research note on Wednesday, July 13th. TheStreet upgraded Caterpillar from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, July 29th. Deutsche Bank AG initiated coverage on Caterpillar in a research note on Tuesday, September 6th. They issued a buy rating and a $72.56 target price for the company. Vetr upgraded Caterpillar from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $85.19 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday, September 13th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. upgraded Caterpillar from a neutral rating to a buy rating and raised their price objective for the company from $76.00 to $112.00 in a research note on Tuesday, October 11th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have assigned a hold rating and eleven have given a buy rating to the company. Caterpillar has a consensus rating of Hold and an average target price of $76.48.
Shares of Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) opened at 87.29 on Thursday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $84.49 and a 200-day moving average price of $79.13. Caterpillar has a 52 week low of $56.36 and a 52 week high of $89.87. The stock has a market cap of $51.00 billion, a PE ratio of 58.19 and a beta of 1.54.
Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $1.09 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.96 by $0.13. Caterpillar had a return on equity of 12.37% and a net margin of 2.64%. The business earned $10.34 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.06 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.27 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 16.0% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts forecast that Caterpillar will post $3.50 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, November 19th. Stockholders of record on Monday, October 24th will be issued a dividend of $0.77 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, October 20th. This represents a $3.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.53%. Caterpillar’s dividend payout ratio is 165.59%.
In other Caterpillar news, Director Dennis A. Muilenburg purchased 1,930 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 29th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $82.75 per share, for a total transaction of $159,707.50. Following the completion of the acquisition, the director now owns 9,558 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $790,924.50. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Bradley M. Halverson sold 2,841 shares of Caterpillar stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $82.73, for a total value of $235,035.93. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 20,232 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,673,793.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.15% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. increased its position in shares of Caterpillar by 1.9% in the second quarter. Pittenger & Anderson Inc. now owns 1,325 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,000 after buying an additional 25 shares in the last quarter. Kelly Lawrence W & Associates Inc. CA increased its position in shares of Caterpillar by 15.4% in the first quarter. Kelly Lawrence W & Associates Inc. CA now owns 1,500 shares of the company’s stock worth $115,000 after buying an additional 200 shares in the last quarter. Nelson Van Denburg & Campbell Wealth Management Group LLC increased its position in shares of Caterpillar by 266.3% in the second quarter. Nelson Van Denburg & Campbell Wealth Management Group LLC now owns 1,513 shares of the company’s stock worth $115,000 after buying an additional 1,100 shares in the last quarter. CapWealth Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Caterpillar by 6.3% in the second quarter. CapWealth Advisors LLC now owns 1,685 shares of the company’s stock worth $128,000 after buying an additional 100 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Archford Capital Strategies LLC increased its position in shares of Caterpillar by 1,424.3% in the second quarter. Archford Capital Strategies LLC now owns 1,692 shares of the company’s stock worth $128,000 after buying an additional 1,581 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 68.99% of the company’s stock.
Caterpillar Company Profile
Caterpillar Inc is a manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. The Company operates through its three product segments: Resource Industries, Construction Industries, and Energy & Transportation. It also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment.
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