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Ingersoll-Rand(IR - Get Report) is a diversified manufacturing firm that owns brands ranging from Club Car golf carts to Schlage locks to Trane air conditioners. In general, Ingersoll-Rand's brands have been heavily affected by the recessionary headwinds of the last few years, a factor that's helped to buoy shares now that the economy is stabilizing again. Hefty exposure to construction means that improvements in heavily watched data points like housing starts and new home sales bode well for IR's income statement.
Like many other capital-intense manufacturing firms, Ingersoll-Rand took the recession as an opportunity to shore up its financials and become a stronger, more svelte firm. By needing less working capital to fuel operations, the firm is better able to withstand any economic hiccups down the road.
New products continue to be an important part of Ingersoll-Rand's revenues, something that's commendable for a manufacturer whose products typically have longer lifecycles. That commitment to product development should help to keep IR's portfolio of brands in their market-leading positions.
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