STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Has GE finally turned a corner?

General Electric is finally giving demoralized shareholders and employees a reason for hope.The embattled comp...

Posted: Apr 20, 2018 3:29 PM
Updated: Apr 20, 2018 3:29 PM

General Electric is finally giving demoralized shareholders and employees a reason for hope.

The embattled company reported first-quarter results on Friday that were better than many feared.

More importantly, GE eased concerns that another shoe wouid drop, standing by its 2018 financial targets.

"The first quarter is a step forward in executing on our 2018 plan and we are seeing signs of progress in our performance," GE CEO John Flannery said in a statement.

Wall Street breathed a big sigh of relief. GE's beaten-down stock bounced 6% and was among the day's best S&P 500 stocks.

GE highlighted progress by pointing to growth in industrial profit, free cash flow and margins. Adjusted earnings topped expectations by a wide margin.

The maker of light bulbs, jet engines and MRI machines also slashed costs by $805 million. GE said it's on track to exceed its goal of cutting $2 billion in costs.

Related: Why GE could be a smart investment for Warren Buffett

Yet GE admitted it still faces challenging times ahead as it tries to recover from years of bad decisions under previous management.

Profit at GE's beleaguered power division plunged by 38% as orders for natural gas and coal turbines continued to shrink. GE recently announced plans to slash 12,000 power jobs.

Flannery said that GE Power is "making progress," but "the industry continues to be challenging and is trending softer than our forecast."

GE also provided another reminder of its legal troubles. The company set aside another $1.5 billion to cover potential losses from a federal investigation into WMC, its discontinued subprime mortgage division. GE said it had settlement talks in March with the Department of Justice on the mortgage investigation. The company said discussions are "ongoing."

GE did not provide an update on a separate probe by the SEC into its notoriously-aggressive accounting tactics.

It's been a brutal past year for GE. Since taking over for longtime CEO Jeff Immelt, Flannery has made a series of alarming revelations about the extent of the company's financial problems.

The iconic company has been forced to cut jobs, put long-held businesses up for sale and cut its dividend in half. Despite those dramatic steps, GE's stock continued to plunge. It's the biggest loser in the Dow so far this year, after losing nearly half its value during the market boom of 2017.

GE is also considering further dismantling its empire. Flannery said the company continues to explore the best structure and plans to disclose a plan in the next few months.

Some analysts remain skeptical on GE's turnaround due to the problems in the power division.

"We do not think it's worth wading into the shares despite the below-market valuation," CFRA Research analyst Jim Corridore wrote to clients on Friday.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 76522

Reported Deaths: 3086
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion16194731
Lake7742281
Elkhart495586
Allen4040163
St. Joseph361083
Hamilton2887104
Vanderburgh205313
Hendricks1943108
Cass18069
Johnson1794119
Porter136239
Clark130750
Tippecanoe124511
Madison103066
LaPorte93530
Howard92065
Kosciusko87212
Floyd82249
Bartholomew82147
Marshall79423
Monroe76732
Delaware76052
Vigo71411
Dubois71312
Boone69746
Noble69029
Hancock68839
Jackson5975
Warrick58830
Shelby56828
LaGrange56610
Grant53130
Dearborn51628
Morgan48934
Clinton4504
Henry41820
Wayne38810
White37711
Montgomery36021
Lawrence35727
Harrison35224
Decatur34232
Putnam3218
Daviess27920
Miami2772
Scott27310
Jasper2572
Greene25434
Franklin24715
DeKalb2384
Gibson2334
Jennings22812
Steuben2153
Ripley2138
Carroll2003
Fayette1957
Perry18713
Posey1800
Starke1807
Orange17824
Wells1782
Fulton1732
Wabash1715
Jefferson1662
Knox1640
Whitley1566
Tipton14912
Washington1441
Sullivan1411
Spencer1393
Clay1315
Huntington1273
Randolph1274
Newton12110
Adams1172
Owen1051
Jay920
Rush894
Pulaski821
Fountain762
Brown752
Blackford662
Ohio656
Benton640
Pike620
Vermillion590
Parke551
Switzerland530
Martin500
Crawford450
Union410
Warren241
Unassigned0208

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 104248

Reported Deaths: 3734
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin18965531
Cuyahoga13869512
Hamilton9844259
Lucas5512326
Montgomery448998
Summit3667224
Butler303364
Marion294245
Mahoning2623256
Pickaway240042
Stark1904142
Warren185039
Lorain183177
Columbiana168360
Trumbull1563110
Fairfield143232
Delaware136519
Licking134551
Clark121315
Lake114642
Wood109058
Clermont96211
Medina95936
Miami86839
Tuscarawas79714
Allen79446
Portage77664
Greene73012
Mercer64113
Belmont62726
Richland61912
Erie61028
Ashtabula57746
Geauga56144
Wayne55459
Ross5094
Madison50310
Darke41429
Huron4115
Ottawa40426
Sandusky39917
Hancock3973
Athens3612
Holmes3316
Lawrence3180
Auglaize2756
Union2731
Scioto2591
Muskingum2481
Jefferson2403
Seneca2344
Shelby2154
Knox2147
Preble2122
Putnam21217
Washington21122
Coshocton1967
Champaign1882
Morrow1792
Crawford1775
Hardin17512
Clinton1716
Highland1692
Logan1672
Ashland1553
Fulton1551
Defiance1544
Wyandot1519
Brown1502
Perry1483
Williams1373
Fayette1240
Henry1222
Hocking1229
Guernsey1197
Carroll1135
Monroe9418
Pike800
Jackson770
Gallia741
Van Wert732
Paulding700
Adams642
Meigs580
Vinton322
Morgan300
Harrison261
Noble170
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 75°
Angola
Few Clouds
68° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 68°
Huntington
Few Clouds
69° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 69°
Decatur
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 73°
Van Wert
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 73°
Storm Chances Friday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events