The following video is part of our "Motley Fool Conversations" series, in which consumer goods editor and analyst Austin Smith discusses topics across the investing world.

In today's edition, Austin helps investors understand where the Dow's second best performing stock for the year gets its money. Caterpillar, the heavy machine manufacturer, recently saw incredible performance out of its mining segment, largely fueled by emerging markets. A highly cyclical company by nature, it had a mediocre 2011, but has been on a tear in 2012. Investors are reading into the recent rise as a good sign for the macro economy, and believe the recent growth indicates a turnaround.

Austin Smith has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. The Motley Fool has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. Motley Fool newsletter services recommend Cummins. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.