PEORIA, Ill. — Bolstered by continued global strength in the markets and industries it serves, Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT – News) reported record second quarter sales and revenues of $9.360 billion and record profit of $760 million, or $1.08 per share. First half of the year results were also records, with company sales and revenues of $17.699 billion and profit of $1.341 billion, or $1.89 per share.
Engine sales totaled $2.758 billion in the second quarter of 2005, up $494 million or 22 percent from the second quarter of 2004. Within that, North American marine engine sales remained relatively flat, but European and Asia/Pacific sales rose significantly. European sales into the marine sector rose 46 percent, while marine engine sales to the Asia/Pacific region rose 36 percent.
“Our global markets continue to exhibit the fundamental strengths needed for further growth, and Team Caterpillar remains well positioned to leverage this unprecedented opportunity now and in the years ahead,” said Caterpillar Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jim Owens. “We’re aggressively pursuing improvement – utilizing our leadership position, strong cash flow and global capabilities in engineering, purchasing, sales and manufacturing to enhance the value customers and stockholders receive from an investment in Caterpillar.”
Sales and revenues of $9.360 billion were up $1.777 billion, or 23 percent, compared to $7.583 billion in the second quarter of 2004. Improving sales volume and price realization drove the increase in sales and revenues.
Profit of $760 million, or $1.08 a share, was up 34 percent compared to profit of $566 million in the second quarter of 2004. The main contributors were improved price realization and sales volume, partially offset by higher core operating costs, about half of which were material costs.
“We’re very pleased that this quarter marks another improvement in our profitability as measured by return on sales – 8.1 percent this quarter compared to 7.5 percent a year ago,” Owens added. “Somewhat better prices were a positive factor in the profit improvement, and for the most part, we expect the price increases announced earlier this year to hold in the marketplace. That said, we are closely monitoring the competitive landscape and are determined to hold our market position. Further, our results continue to be positively driven by literally hundreds of 6 Sigma projects which are being completed every month.”
The outlook for 2005 has been increased over previously reported levels. Sales and revenues are now expected to be up 18 to 20 percent from 2004. The profit outlook for 2005 has also been improved to reflect an estimated profit range of $4.00 to $4.20 per share. North America (United States and Canada) Machinery and Engines sales are expected to increase about 22 percent in 2005.
“The strength of our markets is clearly not a blip on the radar,” Owens said. “Key indicators such as low interest rates, robust commodity prices and needed investment for capacity in electric power and energy production point to continued growth. While this growth is expected to continue in the near term, we’re laying a solid foundation for our future by staying focused on prudently managing our cost structure and margins while continuing to invest in new products and production capacity to meet strong customer demand.”
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