U.S. stocks ticked lower on weak earnings from industrial giant General Electric. Roselle Chen reports.
U.S. stocks closed in the red, dragged by General Electric. The company's shares tanked after it reported nearly sixty percent drop in its second-quarter profit. Other industrials, such as Caterpillar and 3M, went along for the ride. Ken Kamen, president of Mercadien Asset Management: (SOUNDBITE) KEN KAMEN, PRESIDENT, MERCADIEN ASSET MANAGEMENT (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Well, General Electric has really been going for a quite a number of years, not only had businesses that have not done what Wall Street had hoped, they had activist investors go after them, they now are having a big management change, so things are very much in flux, and that's kind of obvious, but I think the thing that might be a bit less obvious for people is that, when a company, certainly any size, but certainly as big as GE, goes through that kind of management change, often times you see a new chief come in and lower expectations, so it's kind of a lower bar to start beating it, and I think Wall Street that the story coming out of GE over the next month or two might be about 'here is what the old guy did, but here is what we're gonna do to fix it up, so give us a chance." Microsoft fell despite strong fourth-quarter results that came in on Wednesday after the close. EBay was down after warning that its adjusted profit could come in below analysts' forecasts. On the flipside, Honeywell raised its profit forecast and the stock traded higher. Visa rose as well after boosting outlook. Oil prices fell after a consultancy group issued a forecast of a rise in OPEC production for July, despite the group's pledge to cut output. In Europe, stocks closed in the red.