Caterpillar 2012 earnings below market expectations

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NEW YORK CITY—The US construction equipment group Caterpillar posted on Monday a 15-percent rise in 2012 net profit, but that was below market expectations owing in large part to a charge of $580 million that arose from accounting fraud at the group’s new Chinese unit Siwei.

Caterpillar’s net profit rose to $5.68 billion, a statement said, though the figure for earnings per share, which is closely watched by investors, came to $8.48, while analysts had pencilled in EPS of $9.12.

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