Caterpillar Inc. lowered its guidance for 2013 Monday after reporting
first-quarter profit shrank 45 percent to $880 million, or $1.31 per share, and
revenue fell 17 percent to $13.2 billion, both missing analyst expectations.
Analysts had expected profit of $1.39 per share on revenue of $13.69 billion, according to Bloomberg.
"In our year-end 2012 financial release, we said the first quarter of 2013 would be challenging, and it certainly was," Doug Oberhelman, Caterpillar chairman and chief executive said in a statement.
Oberhelman said Caterpillar and its dealers usually add inventory in the first quarter to prepare for spring and summer sales. This year, however, dealers reduced their inventory of the company's machines by about $700 million in the first quarter and Caterpillar cut inventory by about $500 million.
The earth-moving equipment maker lowered its full year revenue outlook to $57 billion to $61 billion. Profit is now expected at $7 per share. In December, Caterpillar said it expected full-year profit of $7 to $9 per share and revenue of $60 billion to $68 billion.
Caterpillar said the new outlook reflects lower demand for mining equipment. The company expects a 50 percent drop in sales of traditional mining equipment and a 15 percent decline in sales of machines from its Bucyrus acquisition.
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