Caterpillar Stock Down on Warning
PEORIA, Ill. (AP) _ Caterpillar Inc. stock plummeted Friday after the company warned its fourth-quarter profits will tumble because of continued slow machine sales.
Caterpillar stock fell $4.93 3/4 cents to $51 a share this morning on the New York Stock Exchange, a decline of 9 percent.
The world’s largest maker of heavy machinery now expects fourth-quarter results to be slightly higher than the 61 cents a share profit from this year’s third quarter.
Industry analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Associates had expected earnings of 97 cents a share, up from 83 cents a share in the fourth quarter of last year.
The company blamed the decline on lower-than-anticipated dealer sales to users and stiff competition for its earnings warning.
Caterpillar said it will issue an outlook statement for 2000 in mid-January, but said its preliminary analysis indicates sales and revenue and profit above 1999 levels.
Caterpillar implemented a series of shutdowns this year at its track-type tractor division plant in Peoria in an attempt to bring production in line with weak demand for mining equipment.