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By Nick Carey CHICAGO (Reuters) - Caterpillar Inc on Tuesday cut its 2015 profit outlook and warned the plunge in oil prices would hurt its energy equipment business, sending shares tumbling as much as 8 percent. The world's largest construction and mining equipment maker also posted a lower-than-expected quarterly profit. During the fourth quarter, Caterpillar's energy business helped offset falling construction equipment sales and weakness in mining equipment orders due to lower copper, coal and iron ore prices. Caterpillar said it expects only a modest improvement in the global economy in 2015.
New York authorities on Tuesday vigorously defended a decision to shut down America's biggest city for a winter storm that skirted the Big Apple, dumping the worst snow on Long Island and New England. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city got only a fraction of the two feet (60 centimeters) of snow that had been widely predicted in the 48 hours leading up to the storm.
Genscape, which tracks oil inventories, reported a near 2.4 million-barrel build last week in Cushing, the Oklahoma delivery point for U.S. crude futures, a market source said. OPEC Secretary-General Abdullah al-Badri said on Monday prices may have bottomed after the seven-month selloff, and warned of a possible spike to $200 a barrel.