Caterpillar Could Cut 10,000 Jobs

Caterpillar, the US maker of construction and mining equipment, has said it could cut its workforce by more than 10,000 by 2018.

According to BBC, the company - which employs more than 126,000 worldwide - said it would cut up to 5,000 jobs by the end of 2016.

It is looking to reduce annual costs by $1.5bn by the end of 2016.

Caterpillar has been hit by the collapse of commodity prices which have affected its key customers in the mining and energy sectors.

The firm has reduced its revenue forecast for this year by 2% to $48bn and says earnings next year will fall 5%.

It will be first time in the company's 90 year history that sales revenues have fallen for four years in a row.

'Challenging Conditions'
Caterpillar shares were the biggest faller on the Dow Jones index on Thursday, losing almost 6% as the market opened.

Doug Oberhelman, Caterpillar chairman and chief executive, said: "We are facing a convergence of challenging marketplace conditions in key regions and industry sectors - namely in mining and energy."

The company has reduced its total workforce by more than 31,000 since mid-2012.

Caterpillar warned there could be a "total possible workforce reduction of more than 10,000 people" and said it expected to close some 20 manufacturing facilities over the next three years.

Mr Oberhelman said: "While we've already made substantial adjustments as these market conditions have emerged, we are taking even more decisive actions now.

"We don't make these decisions lightly, but I'm confident these additional steps will better position Caterpillar to deliver solid results when demand improves."