GE cuts div­i­dend be­fore it lays out com­pany’s fu­ture

Malta Independent - - BUSINESS | CLASSIFIEDS -

Gen­eral Elec­tric slashed its div­i­dend in half as in­vestors gath­er­ing in Bos­ton, where Chair­man and CEO John Flan­nery is ex­pected to lay out a sig­nif­i­cant re­tool­ing of the U.S. con­glom­er­ate.

GE's quar­terly div­i­dend is be­ing cut to 12 cents per share, from 24 cents, start­ing next month, the com­pany said Mon­day.

Flan­nery says cost-cut­ting ma­neu­ver is part of the mea­sures GE will un­der­take to make the com­pany sim­pler and stronger. Gen­eral Elec­tric Co. is ex­pected to an­nounce fur­ther plans, in­clud­ing a po­ten­tial re­shap­ing of the com­pany's health, avi­a­tion, light­ing and trans­porta­tion units.

Last month Flan­nery, who be­came CEO in Au­gust, said that GE would shed busi­ness units worth more than $20 bil­lion over the next year or two. It has been par­ing busi­nesses for well over a decade now.

After re­port­ing dis­ap­point­ing third-quar­ter re­sults in Oc­to­ber, Flan­nery said that aside from the exit from cer­tain busi­nesses, GE was plan­ning ma­jor cost cuts across the board. The com­pany has al­ready sur­passed its goal of cut­ting $1 bil­lion in in­dus­trial costs this year. It plans more than $2 bil­lion in cuts next year, dou­ble the orig­i­nal tar­get, to go with at least $20 bil­lion in di­vest­ments over the next year or two, the ex­ec­u­tive said.

Shares of Gen­eral Elec­tric Co. rise 2.2 per­cent to $20.94 in pre­mar­ket trad­ing.

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