|CUMMINS INC filed this Form 10-K on 02/11/2019|
Increasing global competition among our customers may affect our existing customer relationships and restrict our ability to benefit from some of our customers' growth.
As our customers in emerging markets continue to grow in size and scope, they are increasingly seeking to export their products to other countries. This has meant greater demand for our advanced engine technologies to help these customers meet the more stringent emissions requirements of developed markets, as well as greater demand for access to our distribution systems for purposes of equipment servicing. As these emerging market customers enter into, and begin to compete in more developed markets, they may increasingly begin to compete with our existing customers in these markets. Our further aid to emerging market customers could adversely affect our relationships with developed market customers. In addition, to the extent the competition does not correspond to overall growth in demand, we may see little or no benefit from this type of expansion by our emerging market customers.
We are subject to foreign currency exchange rate and other related risks.
We conduct operations in many areas of the world involving transactions denominated in a variety of currencies. We are subject to foreign currency exchange rate risk to the extent that our costs are denominated in currencies other than those in which we earn revenues. In addition, since our financial statements are denominated in U.S. dollars, changes in foreign currency exchange rates between the U.S. dollar and other currencies have had, and will continue to have, an impact on our results of operations, financial condition and cash flows. The U.S. dollar strengthened in recent years resulting in material unfavorable impacts on our revenues in those years. If the U.S. dollar continues strengthening against other currencies, we will experience additional volatility in our financial statements.
While we customarily enter into financial transactions that attempt to address these risks and many of our supply agreements with customers include foreign currency exchange rate adjustment provisions, there can be no assurance that foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations will not adversely affect our future results of operations and cash flows. In addition, while the use of currency hedging instruments may provide us with some protection from adverse fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates, by utilizing these instruments we potentially forego the benefits that might result from favorable fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates.
We also face risks arising from the imposition of foreign exchange controls and currency devaluations. Foreign exchange controls may limit our ability to convert foreign currencies into U.S. dollars or to remit dividends and other payments by our foreign subsidiaries or businesses located in or conducted within a country imposing controls. Currency devaluations result in a diminished value of funds denominated in the currency of the country instituting the devaluation. See Management's Discussion and Analysis for additional information.
Our products are exposed to variability in material and commodity costs.
Our businesses establish prices with our customers in accordance with contractual time frames; however, the timing of material and commodity market price increases may prevent us from passing these additional costs on to our customers through timely pricing actions. Additionally, higher material and commodity costs around the world may offset our efforts to reduce our cost structure. While we customarily enter into financial transactions and contractual pricing adjustment provisions with our customers that attempt to address some of these risks (notably with respect to copper, platinum and palladium), there can be no assurance that commodity price fluctuations will not adversely affect our results of operations and cash flows. In addition, while the use of commodity price hedging instruments and contractual pricing adjustments may provide us with some protection from adverse fluctuations in commodity prices, by utilizing these instruments we potentially forego the benefits that might result from favorable fluctuations in price. As a result, higher material and commodity costs, as well as hedging these commodity costs during periods of decreasing prices, could result in declining margins.
We are exposed to political, economic and other risks that arise from operating a multinational business.
Our business is subject to the political, economic and other risks that are inherent in operating in numerous countries. These risks include: