Tallahassee Journal

GE earnings top Wall Street forecasts

GE earnings top Wall Street forecasts

General Electric’s (GE) third-quarter financial results topped Wall Street expectations Friday as the U.S. conglomerate posted improved earnings amid continued moves to refocus on its manufacturing roots. Shares of Connecticut-based GE rose 3.8% to $29.11 in afternoon trading. The company reported $2.51 billion in earnings, or 25 cents per share, down from $3.54 billion, or 35 cents per share, for the same three-month period last year. Adjusted earnings, excluding special charges, were 29 cents per share, GE said.AP EARNS GENERAL ELECTRIC F FILE USA CA

Third-quarter revenue totaled $31.68 billion, down 1% from $32.1 billion last year. Wall Street analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had forecast nearly $28.65 billion in revenue and 26 cents in earnings per share. The results came three days after GE sold $30 billion in commercial lending and leasing businesses to Wells Fargo, the latest step in a restructuring plan aimed at selling an estimated $200 billion in assets from the company’s GE Capital financing division. The strategy features renewed focus on aviation, energy, transportation and health care, marking a return to GE’s manufacturing heritage and a shift away from financing.

The company, viewed as a proxy for the U.S. manufacturing sector, said revenue from its aviation division rose 5% from the year-earlier quarter. GE’s power and water division posted an equivalent rise of 1%. However, the company reported oil and gas revenue were down 16% year-over-year, amid a continuing global slump of energy prices.

GE said it plans to launch a share exchange next week for the Synchrony Financial division, GE’s consumer finance arm, after winning approval from the Federal Reserve. The exchange is expected to produce a 6% to 7% reduction in the nearly 10.1 billion shares of GE stock outstanding as of June 30.

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