Wall Street brokerages forecast that Caterpillar, Inc. (NYSE:CAT) will announce earnings of $1.69 per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Six analysts have provided estimates for Caterpillar’s earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $1.80 and the lowest estimate coming in at $1.53. Caterpillar reported earnings per share of $0.83 during the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year-over-year growth rate of 103.6%. The company is expected to report its next earnings results on Thursday, January 25th.

On average, analysts expect that Caterpillar will report full-year earnings of $6.41 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $6.20 to $6.53. For the next year, analysts expect that the firm will post earnings of $7.63 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $7.14 to $8.40. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share calculations are a mean average based on a survey of research firms that that provide coverage for Caterpillar.

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, October 24th. The industrial products company reported $1.95 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.27 by $0.68. The company had revenue of $11.41 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.69 billion. Caterpillar had a return on equity of 23.22% and a net margin of 2.09%. The business’s revenue was up 24.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.85 earnings per share.

CAT has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Vetr raised Caterpillar from a “strong sell” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $120.03 price objective for the company in a report on Thursday, August 10th. BidaskClub lowered Caterpillar from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, August 17th. Royal Bank Of Canada reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Caterpillar in a report on Tuesday, August 29th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $100.00 price target on shares of Caterpillar in a research note on Tuesday, August 29th. Finally, ValuEngine raised Caterpillar from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and fourteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $136.41.

In other news, insider Thomas A. Pellette sold 24,547 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, November 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $135.69, for a total value of $3,330,782.43. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Bradley M. Halverson sold 2,600 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.67, for a total value of $357,942.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 5,214 shares in the company, valued at $717,811.38. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 52,989 shares of company stock worth $7,235,850 over the last three months. Company insiders own 0.14% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CAT. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in Caterpillar by 8.1% during the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 5,575,420 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $516,423,000 after purchasing an additional 419,191 shares during the period. Plancorp LLC lifted its stake in Caterpillar by 1.6% during the first quarter. Plancorp LLC now owns 6,865 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $637,000 after purchasing an additional 105 shares during the period. Parallel Advisors LLC raised its stake in shares of Caterpillar by 39.0% in the first quarter. Parallel Advisors LLC now owns 2,132 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $216,000 after acquiring an additional 598 shares during the last quarter. Davidson Investment Advisors raised its stake in shares of Caterpillar by 3.0% in the first quarter. Davidson Investment Advisors now owns 3,400 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $315,000 after acquiring an additional 100 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Impala Asset Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Caterpillar by 42.4% in the first quarter. Impala Asset Management LLC now owns 645,167 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $59,846,000 after acquiring an additional 192,230 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 68.61% of the company’s stock.

Caterpillar (NYSE CAT) opened at $142.89 on Friday. Caterpillar has a fifty-two week low of $90.34 and a fifty-two week high of $145.19. The stock has a market capitalization of $83,492.98, a P/E ratio of 25.29, a P/E/G ratio of 2.12 and a beta of 1.29. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.58, a current ratio of 1.44 and a quick ratio of 1.04.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, November 20th. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 23rd were given a dividend of $0.78 per share. This represents a $3.12 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.18%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, October 20th. Caterpillar’s payout ratio is 216.67%.

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