New York - Caterpillar, the world's top heavy construction equipment maker, said on Wednesday it racked up its best quarter in history in April to June, and raised its full-year profit outlook.
Second-quarter profit was $1.7bn, driven by record sales and revenues of $17.4bn, up 22% from a year ago.
Earnings of $2.54 per share also set a record, said the company, based in Peoria, Illinois.
The results widely topped analysts' expectations of $2.28 EPS.
Revenues of $17.4bn were better than the $17.1bn expected.
Machinery sales increased on higher end-user demand, while mining production rose despite lower prices for metals and coal compared with a year earlier, the company said.
Caterpillar chairperson and chief executive Doug Oberhelman said the company's second-quarter performance was due to "excellent" operational performance, including cost control, safety, quality and new product launches.
"Our global footprint, the breadth of industries we serve and our extensive line of products and services have helped us achieve these record-breaking results during this time of heightened economic uncertainty, and execution has been outstanding," he said in a statement.
Caterpillar reported it had raised its 2012 earnings per share outlook to $9.60, from a previous $9.50, but lowered its sales and revenue forecast to $68-70bn, down from $72bn at the top end.
"I am cautiously optimistic about the world economy in 2013, very positive on the long-term prospects for global growth and excited about the role Caterpillar will play in making that growth happen.
"After all, the road to progress - begins with a road," Oberhelman said.