Friday, April 20, 2007

How Strong is The US Economy

From CBS Marketwatch. This is from a report on Caterpillar's earnings release.

"In North America, sales volume was down significantly from a year earlier," a company statement said. The negative aspects of the quarter included a "significant" decline in housing construction, a slowdown in nonresidential construction and a decline in coal production.

"The steep drop in housing construction continued to depress sales, particularly of smaller machines, as home contractors retrenched. ...Coal mining had a bad first quarter."

North American machinery sales fell by $450 million, or 13%, but rose by $560 million, or 44%, in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

Cat's earnings from outside the US were the reason for the stock's strength today. The news from the US is not that good.