Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) Sees Significant Decrease in Short Interest

Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) was the target of a large decrease in short interest during the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 6,860,000 shares, a decrease of 14.8% from the January 15th total of 8,050,000 shares. Approximately 1.2% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 3,220,000 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.1 days.

NYSE CAT traded down $2.62 on Friday, hitting $137.10. The stock had a trading volume of 148,235 shares, compared to its average volume of 3,140,119. Caterpillar has a one year low of $111.75 and a one year high of $150.55. The company has a quick ratio of 1.05, a current ratio of 1.47 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.80. The stock has a market cap of $74.23 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.80, a P/E/G ratio of 1.64 and a beta of 1.50. The company’s 50-day moving average is $142.47 and its two-hundred day moving average is $134.86.

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) last posted its earnings results on Friday, January 31st. The industrial products company reported $2.63 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.37 by $0.26. Caterpillar had a net margin of 11.32% and a return on equity of 41.85%. The firm had revenue of $13.14 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $13.42 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $2.55 EPS. Caterpillar’s quarterly revenue was down 8.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that Caterpillar will post 9.34 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, February 20th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, January 21st will be issued a $1.03 dividend. This represents a $4.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.01%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, January 17th. Caterpillar’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 37.25%.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Penserra Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Caterpillar by 957.3% in the fourth quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 10,658 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $1,573,000 after acquiring an additional 9,650 shares in the last quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. boosted its holdings in shares of Caterpillar by 29.8% in the fourth quarter. Alyeska Investment Group L.P. now owns 637,420 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $94,134,000 after acquiring an additional 146,525 shares in the last quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Caterpillar by 31.6% in the fourth quarter. Guggenheim Capital LLC now owns 167,103 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $24,677,000 after acquiring an additional 40,089 shares in the last quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp boosted its holdings in shares of Caterpillar by 4.2% in the fourth quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp now owns 559,975 shares of the industrial products company’s stock valued at $82,697,000 after acquiring an additional 22,599 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Brookfield Hedge Solutions LLC bought a new position in shares of Caterpillar in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $1,499,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 64.93% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities research analysts recently weighed in on CAT shares. Credit Suisse Group lowered their price objective on shares of Caterpillar from $173.00 to $162.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, February 3rd. Daiwa Capital Markets raised shares of Caterpillar from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $143.00 to $165.00 in a research report on Tuesday, January 21st. Robert W. Baird reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $185.00 price objective on shares of Caterpillar in a research report on Monday, February 3rd. Citigroup decreased their target price on shares of Caterpillar from $170.00 to $160.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Tuesday, February 4th. Finally, Morgan Stanley decreased their target price on shares of Caterpillar from $137.00 to $126.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, February 3rd. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $145.47.

About Caterpillar

Caterpillar, Inc engages in the manufacture of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines, and diesel-electric locomotives. It operates through the following segments: Construction Industries, Resource Industries, Energy and Transportation, Financial Products, and All Other.

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