America’s Back at Work
Heavy equipment that moves things and makes things. The guts of an economy that’s charging ahead with confidence. All built on steely Midwestern toughness.
Of course, we’re talking about the pride of Deerfield, Illinois, Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT.)
Few American companies have CAT’s bellwether power. If CAT’s doing well, America and the world is getting up at 5:00 a.m. and going to work every day. Times are good.
Few companies have also endured the post-financial crisis round trip CAT has made.
In February of 2009, CAT shares traded for $24.61.
The world was falling apart. The future looked uncertain.
Fast-forward two years to April 2011 and shares traded for $115.41.
Then came the long slide.
From April 2011 to January 2016, shares chopped sideways and slid lower, bottoming at $62.24.
CAT’s revenue tells the story.
From $51.3 billion in 2008 to $32.3 billion in 2009.
To $42.5 billion in 2010, $60.1 billion in 2011… $55 billion in 2013 and 2014… to $38 billion last year.
Along the way, CAT along with General Motors and others became part of the “good manufacturing jobs are never coming back” narrative.
News searches from 2009 to today show the guilty. The Atlantic, Reuters, USA Today, Fortune, Business Insider, The Economist, they all piled on.
CAT, the once-great American manufacturing powerhouse. Done.
Then, a funny thing happened. CAT came roaring back.
Yes, there were job cuts. Yes, there were “restructuring costs.” And yes, CAT continues to figure out how it competes globally. But this American icon isn’t done yet.
Yesterday’s Bloomberg headline says it all:
Caterpillar Is the Latest Sign The World’s Economy Hasn’t Looked This Good in Years
CAT’s projecting $44 billion in sales in 2017. Sales are up 27% in North America. 31% in Asia. 24% in Latin America. 22% in Europe and the Middle East.
Where do shares stand now?
From $93 in early January to $138.24 at the close yesterday, a 4.98% gain for the day, CAT’s back to work.
Here’s to second acts, comebacks, and rip-roaring demand for the heavy machinery that powers the global economy.
Taking a look at the markets this morning…
Market Rundown for Wed., October 25
S&P 500 futures are off 4.50 this morning at 2,562.
Oil sits at $52.30. Gold’s down a bit at $1,274.
The Russell 2000’s right at 1,500 this morning, up 2.93.
Wild day for Bitcoin yesterday. From $5,721 to $5,380, finally settling at $5,536.
Talk with you again on Friday.
For the Rundown,