General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) added about 0.9% to its share price last week, not enough to shake off its ranking as the worst-performing equity on the Dow Jones Industrial Average index. For the year to date, GE stock has dropped 22.82%.
This is GE’s 12th consecutive week as the Dow’s worst performer. The company still has a big lead over the second-worst stock, International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM), which is down 11.75% for the year. The third-worst, Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), is now down 9.47%. Only six of the 30 Dow stocks have traded down so far this year.
Last Saturday, an Airbus A380 superjumbo passenger plane blew an engine on a flight from Paris to Los Angeles. The engine was manufactured by Engine Alliance, a joint venture between GE and Pratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTC). Not an auspicious beginning.
GE announced on Friday the departure by year’s end of three top executives who are holdovers from the Jeff Immelt era. GE’s chief financial officer, chief marketing office and head of its overseas business are all leaving the industrial giant as new CEO John Flannery continues to put his stamp on the company.
Flannery also has reduced GE’s corporate office staff, taken steps to sell off company-owned aircraft, and even eliminated executives’ leases on corporate cars after current leases expire in 2018. The cost-cutting is likely to get closer to the bone as a November 13 meeting with investors gets closer.
GE’s shares closed down about 0.6% Friday, at $24.39 in a 52-week range of $23.58 to $32.38. The consensus 12-month price target for the stock dipped to $28.50, a drop of 1.5% in the past week. The price target range is $21 to $36.