General Electric lost money as it moves to mostly exit its finance business. One analyst says it'll be hard for GE to meet its profit target this year. Fred Katayama reports.
GE lost money in the latest quarter because of its move to exit most of its financial business to focus on its industrial business. Revenue at GE Capital plunged 39 percent. That unit once cranked out roughly half of its profit. But even after stripping out the charges for that restructuring move, GE's adjusted earnings and revenue fell. The strong dollar also took a $950 million bite out of results. Stripping out a big currency hit and the impact of deals, sales of GE's industrial businesses rose slightly. Both profit and revenue in its oil and gas business fell. Many oil producers are cutting capital spending plans in light of the huge plunge in crude oil prices. GE CEO Jeff Immelt says he sees continued growth opportunities in infrastructure. But Morgan Stanley analyst Nigel Coe predicts the strong dollar could make it hard for GE to hit its profit target this year, saying, "Double-digit operating earnings expansion could be an increasing stretch in light of the FX headwind experienced this quarter." GE's shares, which jumped 11 percent on last week's announcement to drastically shrink its finance business, gave back more of those gains in early trading.