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Many companies have been boosting dividends, looking to give cash back to shareholders as the need to hoard it wanes amid an improved economy.

GE shares were up 2.7% to $20.95 in recent premarket activity. The stock has risen 12% year-to-date through Wednesday, with GE's strong first-quarter results following a fourth-quarter report in January that showed substantial evidence of a turnaround.

"GE has emerged from the recession a stronger, more competitive company," Chief Executive Jeff Immelt said in a prepared statement Thursday. "The GE business model will continue to deliver earnings growth for shareowners in 2011 and beyond."

He reiterated confidence that the Fairfield, Conn., company will achieve goals laid out in its 2011 financial framework, which among other things calls for about 5% revenue growth in GE's industrial businesses. GE has been relying on its industrial units to fuel its long-term prospects as it moves to shrink GE Capital, which once accounted for half the conglomerate's profit but became an albatross amid the financial crisis.

GE ended the first quarter with a $177 billion backlog of orders for big-ticket equipment and services, a company record and an increase from $175 billion at the end of the fourth quarter.

New equipment and services orders totaled $19 billion, up from $17.1 billion in the year-ago period but down from $24.8 billion in the fourth quarter.

GE reported a first-quarter profit of $3.43 billion, or 31 cents a share, up from $1.95 billion, or 17 cents a share, a year earlier. The company's operating earnings, which exclude discontinued operations and other items such as nonoperating pension costs, rose to 33 cents from 20 cents. Revenue rose 6.2% to $38.45 billion.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most recently forecast earnings of 28 cents on $34.64 billion in revenue.

Costs declined 7.1%.

GE Capital, the company's biggest segment by revenue, saw its top line rise 3.3% while profit more than tripled. GE's energy infrastructure and aviation arms saw their revenue rise 9.2% and 4.9%, respectively.

The energy infrastructure unit was GE's only major segment to show a year-over-year profit decline, with earnings off 7%

-Nathan Becker contributed to this article.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB100...76564256544634.html?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories
 

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Good for them. Sounds like they are well-run and serving a profitable niche. There was a time when we bragged about profitable companies. Now we just tear them down and call them greedy. Profitable companies are good for everybody.
 

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Good for them. Sounds like they are well-run and serving a profitable niche. There was a time when we bragged about profitable companies. Now we just tear them down and call them greedy. Profitable companies are good for everybody.
Totally agree.
 

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"The energy infrastructure unit was GE's only major segment to show a year-over-year profit decline, with earnings off 7%"


That doesn't sound like it fits well with President Obama's plan.
 

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There was a time when we bragged about profitable companies. Now we just tear them down and call them greedy. Profitable companies are good for everybody.
I agree with you 100%

But in this case they are way too deep into the American tax payer pocket and are directly in line to recieve millions from guberment lib projects :crazy:


GE at one time (just like GM) was a company to be proud to call American. I think they (both) have lost thier luster because of their busness practices only looking at the short term:lookinup:
 

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I agree with you 100%

But in this case they are way too deep into the American tax payer pocket and are directly in line to recieve millions from guberment lib projects :crazy:


GE at one time (just like GM) was a company to be proud to call American. I think they (both) have lost thier luster because of their busness practices only looking at the short term:lookinup:
I understand the viewpoint. But here's how I feel about government largesse for large corps: It is the job of the leaders of those corps to get as much return for shareholders as possible. In today's world, begging at the public trough is one way you increase those returns. I think it is the job of CEO's to go looking for all of the profit they can legally get. If government goes for it and taxpayers get fleeced, it's government's fault for giving in. We actually have recourse on that at election time. But the message has not been clearly sent from voters that there will be a price to pay. I think this is part of the Tea Party's agenda to send that message.
 

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Good for them. Sounds like they are well-run and serving a profitable niche. There was a time when we bragged about profitable companies. Now we just tear them down and call them greedy. Profitable companies are good for everybody.
:laughing: There was also a time when they didn't use the government to make those nice profits.. but I know, it's our fault.. :lookinup:

I just hope they export as many jobs/services over the next 5 years, as they did the last 5. :thumbsup:
 
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