General Electric profits fall, backlog hits record

General Electric profits fall, backlog hits record

US conglomerate General Electric reported Friday a sharp profit fall in the second quarter but kept its full-year outlook as a backlog of orders reached a record high.

GE posted $3.1 billion net earnings for the second quarter, down 18 percent from the same period a year ago but beating Wall Street expectations.

Earnings per share of 38 cents were one cent higher than the average market estimate.

Revenues, up 2 percent at $36.5 billion, were hit by unfavorable foreign-exchange rates and further shrinkage of the company’s GE Capital business, the unit that battered earnings during the 2008-2009 financial crisis, the company said.

Revenues slightly missed expectations of $36.8 billion.

The multinational, seen as a bellwether of the world economy with businesses including aircraft engines, wind turbines, energy, home appliances and finance, said its industrial segment revenues jumped 9 percent to $25 billion.

In growth markets, revenues jumped 17 percent, driven by double-digit growth in Australia, Canada, China, Latin America, the Middle East/North Africa, Southeast Asia and Russia.

GE said it ended the quarter with a record backlog of $204 billion.

The Fairfield, Connecticut-based company’s cash pile was $74 billion.

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