Caterpillar (CAT) Q4 Earnings Beat, Revenues Lag Estimates

Caterpillar Inc.CAT is one of the well-known names in the construction and mining machinery industry with a market capitalization of $57.42 billion. It is a leading exporter in the U.S. with more than half of its sales being generated outside the country.

Ahead of its third quarter earnings release, Caterpillar reported a 12% decline in its global retail sales for the three months ended Dec 2016, following 17% dip in Nov and 12% decline in Oct. In 2016, Caterpillar's monthly sales have posted an average fall of 15.4% and a 13.7% drop in the fourth quarter.

This is not surprising as Caterpillar's results for the past few quarters have borne the brunt of a weak mining industry, low oil prices , stronger U.S. dollar and China's economic woes. Continued weakness in agriculture has also negatively impacted sales. It remains to be seen whether improvement in construction and cost reduction can provide some respite to this ailing mining and equipment behemoth in the fourth quarter.

Investors are thus awaiting Caterpillar's results as it has long been considered a bellwether of national and global economic strength. Let's have a quick look at the fourth quarter release of this Peoria, Illinois-based construction and mining equipment manufacturer.

Estimate Trend & Surprise History

Investors should note that over a 30 days timeframe, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for the fourth quarter has moved south for Caterpillar. Coming to the earnings surprise, Caterpillar has an impressive track record, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate in all of the last four quarters, with an average positive surprise of 8.53%.

Caterpillar, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Caterpillar, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise | Caterpillar, Inc. Quote

Earnings Beat Estimates

Caterpillar beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 28%. Analysts polled by Zacks were expecting earnings per share (EPS) of 65 cents and the company reported adjusted EPS of 83 cents.

Revenues Miss Estimates

Caterpillar reported revenues of $9.57 billion, falling short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $9.76 billion.

Developments to Note

For 2017, Caterpillar projects adjusted earnings of $2.90 per share on the back of revenues in the range of $36 to 39 billion.

Zacks Rank

Currently, Caterpillar has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, this could change following Caterpillar's earnings report which was just released.

Market Reaction

Caterpillar shares dipped 0.82% in pre-market trading .

Check back later for our full write up on this Caterpillar earnings report later!

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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