Topic: How To Invest

Q: Hi, Pat. Thanks for all your advice. It has been much appreciated. Can I have your opinion on Deere (DE), please. Thanks.

Article Excerpt

A: Deere & Co., $159.20, symbol DE on New York (Shares outstanding: 312.9 million; Market cap: $50.1 billion; www.deere.com), started up in 1837 when its founder, John Deere, began making polished-steel plows at his blacksmith shop in Grand Detour, Illinois. Today, the company is the world’s largest maker of agricultural equipment, with manufacturing plants in the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, Spain, South Africa, Mexico and Argentina. In addition to John Deere, its top brands include Frontier, Kemper, Green Systems and SABO. Deere mainly sells these products through independent dealers and home-improvement chains like Home Depot and Lowe’s. It has three divisions: Agriculture and turf (61% of revenue, 72% of earnings) makes tractors, combines, harvesters, seeders, balers, mowers and related farm gear. Construction and forestry (25%, 12%) manufactures backhoe loaders, bulldozers, excavators, motor graders, dump trucks and log harvesters. Financial services (14%, 16%) lends to independent dealers and buyers of Deere products. Food commodity prices fell between 2013 and 2016, lowering farm incomes as…

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