General Electric Co reported better-than-expected earnings, helped by the recovery of its finance arm and a rise in revenue at its industrial units, including a sharp pickup in sales of locomotives.
The world's biggest maker of electric turbines and jet engines reported fourth-quarter profit from continuing operations of 36 cents a share, above the 32 cents analysts had expected. Revenue of $41.4 billion exceeded analysts' estimates for $39.9 billion
GE shares rose 2.2 percent in premarket trading.
Following are reactions from industry analysts and investors:
RICK MECKLER, PRESIDENT, LIBERTYVIEW CAPITAL MANAGEMENT, NEW YORK
I didn't think there is anything not to like about the numbers, but by the same token given the recovery in the economy and the recovery in financial stocks you'd be surprised not to see GE be on that path.
I think what most investors are really trying to see is the growth numbers. They certainly looked OK on paper. I think the conference call will go a long way to better understanding it. This is a company that has really changed its focus away from the domination of GE Capital, which undoubtedly grew too large.
The other factor that people will look at is the stock has recovered quite a bit in anticipation of this and whether there is enough here to keep the momentum going, My guess is it will, but it also won't surprise me if investors rest here, waiting for the next leg of GE's recovery before committing new funds to it.
MIKE LENHOFF, CHIEF STRATEGIST, BREWIN DOLPHIN, LONDON
Results are satisfactory. On balance, the story coming out of quarterly results is reasonably promising. The (stock) market is going to remain reasonably solid. We have seen a natural progression over time in this recovery toward a solid underpinning.
GE is quite an interesting one as it is much more diversified company and a good bellwether for the economy generally. It's telling us that the fundamental backdrop for companies is pretty good.
JACK DE GAN, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, HARBOR ADVISORY
CORP, PORTSMOUTH, NEW HAMPSHIRE
The most exciting thing is the return to organic revenue growth. They used to really tout that. The last two or two and a half years, organic revenue growth has been negative, and this is the first quarter that it's flipped positive.
PETER CARDILLO, CHIEF MARKET ECONOMIST, AVALON PARTNERS, NEW YORK
GE came in a bit better than expected and it is obviously helping the futures this morning. It is sparking a good mood for the market today and for the rest of the earnings season. This could lead the market to reverse some losses that we had in the past few days and it gives momentum to the bull trend again.
(Reporting by Angela Moon, Nick Zieminski and Edward Krudy in New York and Atul Prakash in London)