Caterpillar warns equipment sales still falling

Caterpillar warns equipment sales still falling
Caterpillar warns equipment sales still falling   

Caterpillar saw retail sales of machinery fall 16 percent worldwide for the three-month period ended in December, the construction and mining equipment company said on Wednesday.

Caterpillar, which is due to report earnings on Thursday, has been pressured by the global slowdown in the energy and mining industries.

The company said retail sales to resource industries worldwide fell 38 percent over the three-month period, while retail sales to the energy industries fell 32 percent.

The pace of declines is also increasing, the company noted in an SEC filing. The worldwide decline in retail sales of machines had been 11 percent for the three months ended in November.

Cramer's Mad Dash: Caterpillar
Cramer's Mad Dash: Caterpillar   

Goldman Sachs recently downgraded the company to "sell," an unusual and notable call from a major Wall Street firm, saying it expected lower machinery demand from commodity producers.

Caterpillar shares dropped 2.1 percent in early trading. The stock is down about 22 percent since early November and more than 34 percent from its highs last May.