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General Electric (NYSE:GE): Only for the Most Patient Investors

This article first appeared on Simply Wall St News.

When eye-catching losses meet the broad market decline, the stock gets hit with a double whammy.

Such is the case with General Electric Company (NYSE: GE) which tumbled 10% on the earnings, sinking to a 17-month low. With the rising costs of materials and supply chain disruptions, the company now sees full-year earnings at the low end of its guidance.

View our latest analysis for General Electric

Q1 Earnings Results

  • Non-GAAP EPS: US$0.24 (beat by US$0.05)

  • Revenue: US$16.43b (miss by US$490m)

  • Revenue growth: +0.8% Y/Y

Other highlights

  • Authorized buyback: US$3b

  • Total orders growth: +11%

While the Q1 net loss narrowed from the year ago, the free cash flow did as well, although it missed Wall Street's expectations for US$64.5m.

As per segments, Aviation did the best, rising +12% Y/Y, while Renewable Energy dropped -10%. Citibank analysts noted that „the renewable business losses were expected but remain eye-catching.

Keeping Track of the Turnaround

When a company doesn't profit, we'd generally expect to see good revenue growth. Some companies are willing to postpone profitability to grow revenue faster, but in that case, one does expect good top-line growth.

Over half a decade General Electric reduced its trailing twelve-month revenue by 10% for each year. That puts it in an unattractive cohort, to put it mildly. Then, it seems appropriate that the share price slid about 11% annually during that time. It's fair to say most investors don't like to invest in loss-making companies with falling revenue. You'd want to research pretty thoroughly before buying, it looks a bit too risky for us.

You can see how earnings and revenue have changed over time in the image below (click on the chart to see the exact values).


We consider it positive that insiders have made purchases in the last year. Even so, future earnings will be far more important to whether current shareholders make money. So it makes a lot of sense to check out what analysts think General Electric will earn in the future (free profit forecasts).

What Does This Mean for the Investors?

GE has been a source of struggle and frustration for many of its long-term investors. In the last few years, the company has been almost in a perpetual state of restructuring, which might not be completed until 2024.

Although the management authorized a US$3b stock buyback, for a company the size of GE, it is not that impressive. One of the rare positives is that the first quarter of the year is usually the weakest based on the seasonality.

For all that is worth, GE is facing many of the issues that almost every other conglomerate seems to be facing at the moment: supply chain pressures, inflationary pressures, and Russian sanctions. Yet, until all the spin-offs unwind, it will be hard to make any concise turnaround thesis for anyone except the most optimistic buy-and-hold long-term investors.

While it is well worth considering the different impacts of market conditions on the share price, other factors are even more important. For instance, we've identified 1 warning sign for General Electric that you should be aware of. If you're looking for interesting buying opportunities, check out this free list of growing companies with insider buying.

Please note, the market returns quoted in this article reflect the market-weighted average returns of stocks that currently trade on US exchanges.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com

Simply Wall St analyst Stjepan Kalinic and Simply Wall St have no position in any of the companies mentioned. This article is general in nature. We provide commentary based on historical data and analyst forecasts only using an unbiased methodology and our articles are not intended to be financial advice. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.