Caterpillar, which has a substantial presence throughout Idaho and the Northwest, saw a significant increase at this morning's opening bell of the New York Stock Exchange, right after posting better-than-expected earnings before trading began. Shares were already trading well above $90 (CAT traded closer to $82 per share only two months ago).
Caterpillar reported early today that its fourth-quarter revenues of $14.4 billion, triggering net income of $1.54 per share, was a whopping 48 percent higher than the same quarter a year ago.
Caterpillar presence in the Pacific Northwest has grown substantially since 1956, when Idaho-based Western States CAT grew from four branches to 23, covering a region of 191,000 square miles.
Caterpillar is the planet's largest mining and construction equipment maker, but it saw sharp declines in 2012, primarily driven by a drop in sales of mining machinery. The company is under way with a massive $17.5 billion stock buyback program, which is set to continue until 2018.