Many previous articles have focused on the appeal of Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT), the world’s largest heavy equipment manufacturer.
Caterpillar is up for the last week, month, and year of market action (chart below).
It is a play on global growth. China, India, Brazil, and other countries need the equipment and services from Caterpillar to develop their economies. At times, this has made Caterpillar very vulnerable to slowing economies in emerging market nations.
But that has changed in recent times.
Caterpillar is starting to rise even where there are problems in China. This shows that Caterpillar is starting to even out its earnings stream. It has done this by focusing more on service income rather than selling heavy equipment.
For the shareholders, this function takes place with the dividend income.
The dividend yield for Caterpillar is nearly 2.8 percent. At present, the average dividend yield for a member of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (NYSE: SPY) is just under 2 percent. In addition, Caterpillar has a history of dividend growth. This rewards long term investors simply for not selling the stock.
A raise is received when the dividend amount is raised.
What investors should like the most is the earnings growth trends for Caterpillar. Over the next five years, it is projected to be 12.98 percent. Next year is is expected to be 6.96 percent. For the last five years it was 0.30 percent.
That is a very bullish trend in earnings for Caterpillar.
Investors for the long term should be positive about the outlook for Caterpillar. Even though it is a member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Caterpillar is very volatile. The beta is 1.65. That means that the stock price moves about two-thirds more than the stock market as a whole. For the savvy investor, that offers chances to buy at a discount for the long term when the stock price falls.