Caterpillar Inc. said that quarterly earnings fell more than 32% and warned of a tough year ahead. The company also warned that profit in 2009 would be under severe pressure and said that it would cut about 17,000 workers and buy out 2500 others, to reduce costs in the face of what it predicted would be the weakest year for business since the end of World War Two.
The company reported a 4Q profit of US$661 million, or $1.08 a share, compared with $975 million, or $1.50 a share, last year. Sales rose 6% to $12.92 billion.
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