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Dow Tumbles 400 Points After 3M, Caterpillar Crash After Earnings

• Zero Hedge - Tyler Durden

Starting with 3M, the multinational conglomerate reported 3Q EPS $2.58, which while a 10.7% increase Y/Y, missed estimates of $2.70 on net sales $8.15 billion, also missing estimates of $8.40 billion.

3M reported operating cash flow of $2.1 billion, almost was almost entirely handed over to shareholders, with $794 million paid in cash dividends and $1.1 billion in stock repurchases. On a geographic basis, core results were ok with sales growing 1.6% in Asia Pacific and 1.3% in the U.S.; however, total sales declined 3.9% in EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) and 5.5 percent in Latin America/Canada.

The top-line was ugly: industrial net sales were $3.02 billion, increasing 2.2% in local currency terms but down 2.1% after the foreign currency translation. Operating income was $667 million, a decrease of 0.7 percent year-on-year; operating margins were 22.1 percent.

The revenue pain continued:

Healthcare revenues of $1.45 billion were even worse, down 2.8% in U.S. dollars.

Electronics and energy sales were $1.4 billion, down 4.8% in U.S. dollars.

Consumer sales were $1.2 billion, down 3.4% in U.S. dollars.

But the biggest disappointment was the company's guidance, which now sees full year adjusted EPS of $9.90 to $10.00, below the consensus est. $10.28, and down versus the prior expectation of $10.20 to $10.45. The cut reflects an estimated full-year earnings headwind of $0.05 per share from foreign currency versus a prior expectation of a benefit of $0.10 per share.

Separately, Caterpillar reported Q3 results which beat on adj EPS $2.86, vs the estimate $2.85 and revenue $13.5 billion, also above the estimate $13.31 billion.

But while earnings were strong, what traders were worried about was the company's warnings that "manufacturing costs were higher due to increased material and freight costs," adding that "Material costs were higher primarily due to increases in steel prices and tariffs."

Specifically, CAT said that the impact of recently-imposed tariffs was about $40 million in third quarter, and the company sees full-year impact of the tariffs at the low-end of $100 million to $200 million range. The company warned that its manufacturing costs were higher due to increased material and freight costs, primarily due to increases in steel prices and tariffs.

CAT also cautioned that the ramp in demand, with sales and revenues for the first nine months of 2018 up 24 percent, has led to supply chain "challenges" across the industry.

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