Traders purchased shares of Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) on weakness during trading hours on Friday. $78.53 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $52.98 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $25.55 million into the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Caterpillar had the 15th highest net in-flow for the day. Caterpillar traded down ($0.63) for the day and closed at $79.38

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Axiom Securities reaffirmed a “sell” rating and issued a $33.00 price target (up from $28.00) on shares of Caterpillar in a research report on Tuesday, April 19th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $87.00 price target on shares of Caterpillar in a research report on Wednesday, July 13th. Vetr raised Caterpillar from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $81.54 price target on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, April 13th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Caterpillar from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, April 15th. Finally, Barclays PLC reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Caterpillar in a research report on Thursday, April 14th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have issued a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $70.16.

The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $76.71 and its 200-day moving average price is $71.89. The company has a market cap of $46.35 billion and a P/E ratio of 41.76.

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) last announced its earnings results on Friday, April 22nd. The company reported $0.67 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $9.46 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.59 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.72 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 25.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts forecast that Caterpillar Inc. will post $3.52 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, August 20th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, July 20th will be issued a dividend of $0.77 per share. The ex-dividend date is Monday, July 18th. This represents a $3.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.88%.

In other news, Director Dennis A. Muilenburg acquired 1,128 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 9th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $71.01 per share, with a total value of $80,099.28. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 7,628 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $541,664.28. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director David L. Calhoun acquired 25,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, April 26th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $77.44 per share, for a total transaction of $1,936,000.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 33,129 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,565,509.76. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here.

A number of hedge funds and institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Essex Financial Services Inc. boosted its position in shares of Caterpillar by 7.8% in the fourth quarter. Essex Financial Services Inc. now owns 15,138 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,029,000 after buying an additional 1,096 shares during the period. Navellier & Associates Inc boosted its stake in Caterpillar by 1.2% in the fourth quarter. Navellier & Associates Inc now owns 17,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,183,000 after buying an additional 200 shares during the last quarter. RBO & Co. LLC bought a new stake in Caterpillar during the fourth quarter worth $1,359,000. Hamilton Point Investment Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Caterpillar by 17.0% in the fourth quarter. Hamilton Point Investment Advisors LLC now owns 20,561 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,397,000 after buying an additional 2,991 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Midas Management Corp bought a new stake in Caterpillar during the fourth quarter worth $1,427,000.

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 its three product segments: Resource Industries, Construction Industries, and Energy & Transportation. It also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment.

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