Cooper Industries (NYSE: CBE) makes and sells electronic equipment. These products fall into two general categories: energy and safety, and electrical products. The energy and safety equipment includes fire detection, emergency lighting, hazardous electrical equipment, and explosion proof instruments. The electrical products includes circuits, switches, wirings, light fixtures, and other similar goods. In addition, the company has entered into a joint venture to sell hand tools for industrial and commercial uses. For the full year 2010, Cooper announced a total revenue of $5.1B and net income of $444M.
The demand for the goods that Cooper Industries produces is heavily based on the U.S. Housing Market and building construction in general. The energy and safety equipment described in the first category are used primarily in commercial and industrial buildings such as shopping centers, sports complexes, and industrial buildings. The products made in the second category are used in commercial and industrial buildings as well as residential buildings. As a result, the company's revenues are based on the number of housing starts and the growth of industrial facilities. A downturn in one or the other will impact the company's performance