Shares of Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) have received an average rating of “Buy” from the twenty-eight ratings firms that are currently covering the firm, Marketbeat reports. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and eighteen have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average twelve-month price target among brokerages that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $164.97.

Several research firms have recently issued reports on CAT. Citigroup increased their price objective on shares of Caterpillar from $145.00 to $160.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Thursday, December 21st. Vetr upgraded shares of Caterpillar from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $131.05 price objective for the company in a report on Thursday, October 19th. Argus increased their price objective on shares of Caterpillar from $130.00 to $155.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, October 26th. Bank of America reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $189.00 price objective (up from $158.00) on shares of Caterpillar in a report on Friday, January 12th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group increased their price objective on shares of Caterpillar from $146.00 to $155.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 25th.

In other Caterpillar news, CFO Bradley M. Halverson sold 17,210 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.33, for a total value of $2,363,449.30. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 7,814 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,073,096.62. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, insider Thomas A. Pellette sold 24,547 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $135.69, for a total transaction of $3,330,782.43. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 143,331 shares of company stock valued at $22,107,578. 0.14% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Gradient Investments LLC purchased a new stake in Caterpillar in the 4th quarter worth approximately $113,000. Harvest Fund Management Co. Ltd purchased a new stake in Caterpillar in the 4th quarter worth approximately $131,000. Clearbridge LLC purchased a new stake in Caterpillar in the 4th quarter worth approximately $140,000. Aevitas Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Caterpillar in the 4th quarter worth approximately $143,000. Finally, Sandy Spring Bank lifted its position in Caterpillar by 61.9% in the 4th quarter. Sandy Spring Bank now owns 981 shares of the industrial products company’s stock worth $155,000 after buying an additional 375 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 69.27% of the company’s stock.

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) traded up $4.09 during trading on Friday, hitting $158.06. 5,552,017 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 6,926,248. The company has a quick ratio of 0.97, a current ratio of 1.35 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.73. The company has a market capitalization of $94,040.00, a PE ratio of 125.44, a PEG ratio of 1.63 and a beta of 1.22. Caterpillar has a twelve month low of $90.34 and a twelve month high of $173.24.

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 25th. The industrial products company reported $2.16 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.77 by $0.39. The business had revenue of $12.90 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $12.01 billion. Caterpillar had a net margin of 1.66% and a return on equity of 28.69%. The business’s revenue was up 34.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm posted $0.83 earnings per share. equities research analysts forecast that Caterpillar will post 9.05 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, February 20th. Investors of record on Monday, January 22nd will be given a $0.78 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, January 19th. This represents a $3.12 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.97%. Caterpillar’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 247.62%.

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About Caterpillar

Caterpillar Inc is a manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. The Company operates through segments, including Construction Industries, which is engaged in supporting customers using machinery in infrastructure, forestry and building construction; Resource Industries, which is engaged in supporting customers using machinery in mining, quarry, waste and material handling applications; Energy & Transportation, which supports customers in oil and gas, power generation, marine, rail and industrial applications, including Cat machines; Financial Products segment, which provides financing and related services, and All Other operating segments, which includes activities, such as product management and development, and manufacturing of filters and fluids, undercarriage, tires and rims, ground engaging tools, fluid transfer products, and sealing and connecting components for Cat products.

Analyst Recommendations for Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT)

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