Caterpillar moving headquarters from Peoria to Chicago

New York -- Caterpillar Inc. is moving its headquarters to the Chicago area and won’t build a new complex in its current Peoria, Illinois location.

The maker of farming and construction equipment faces a weak market that’s been cutting into its bottom line. Last week, Caterpillar reported a larger than expected fourth-quarter loss on charges and higher restructuring costs. It has been cutting jobs and facilities over the last several years.

“As a result of continuing challenging market conditions and the need to prioritize resources to focus on growth, Caterpillar will not build the previously announced headquarters complex in Peoria,” the company said.

The company said it will locate a limited group of senior executives and support functions in the Chicago area later this year, saying it is a more strategic location. It expects about 300 people to be based at the new location.

“Locating our headquarters closer to a global transportation hub, such as Chicago, means we can meet with our global customers, dealers and employees more easily and frequently,” said CEO Jim Umpleby.

The “vast majority” of employees will remain in central Illinois, the company said, and the current Caterpillar building in Peoria will continue to be used.