GE, whose shares sit at a level not seen since the mid-90s, reported EPS of $.36, right in line with expectations. Clearly the company has gotten better at guiding analysts to the exact number. Immelt said the company is commited to maintaining its $1.24 in dividend for the year (a yield of about 9% at current levels) as well as its AAA credit rating, and he walked through the efforts being made to repair the balance sheet:
“We generated $16.7 billion of industrial cash flow from operations, up 5%. We ended the year with $48 billion in total cash, after paying down our commercial paper balance to $72 billion from $88 billion at the third quarter. We used $5.5 billion of our equity offering to meet our stated GE Capital debt-to-equity leverage goal of 7:1 by the end of 2008. Through today, we have been able to fund $29 billion of our $45 billion long-term debt needs for 2009.”
Segment revenue grew by varying amounts in the quarter. Infrastructure and media were up 3%, while energy infrastructure, an area that should slow dramatically if prices remaind depressed, was up 11%.
Shares are up a fraction pre market.