But the industrial conglomerate's earnings and revenue beat Wall Street's forecasts, and it boosted cash flow. Fred Katayama reports.
General Electric's quarterly profit fell almost 60 percent in Jeff Immelt's final report as CEO of the industrial conglomerate. The sale of its appliances business hurt results. Revenue dropped sharply due to weakness in the energy connections business that provides electrification and automation products. But the profit and revenue surpassed Wall Street's expectations. And the company said it was on its way to meeting or exceeding its $1 billion cost cutting target. Under pressure to report strong cash flow, GE responded. Cash flow from operations rose nine-fold from the previous quarter. William Blair analyst Nicholas Heymann said, "In sum, GE's results were encouraging on cash flow from operating activities, weak on industrial margins, and satisfactory on most other key metrics." GE shares fell at the start of trading, deepening their nearly 16 percent loss this year.