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General Electric Beats With Revenue Jolt (Update 2)

  • Fourth-quarter operating earnings of $4.7 billion, or 44 cents a share, beating the consensus estimate of 43 cents.
  • Revenue of $39.327 billion beats the consensus estimate of $38.739 billion.
  • GE Capital pays $1.0 billion Q4 dividend to parent company, for a total of $6.4 billion during 2012.
  • 2012 operating earnings total $16.1 billion, increasing 8% from 2011.

Updated with more detail on industrial revenue growth, a strong reaction by investors in premarket trading, and comment from JPMorgan analyst Stephen Tusa.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- General Electric (GE - Get Report) on Friday reported 8% organic growth for 2012.

The company reported fourth-quarter operating earnings of $4.666 billion, or 44 cents a share, beating the consensus estimate among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters of a 43-cent profit. Operating earnings rose from 36 cents in the third quarter and 39 cents during the fourth quarter of 2011.

Fourth-quarter revenue totaled $39.327 billion, beating the consensus estimate of $38.739 billion, as the company saw sequential increases in all major segments. Total revenue increased from $36.349 billion the previous quarter and from $37.972 billion a year earlier.

Operating earnings for all of 2012 were $16.1 billion, increasing 8% from $14.9 billion in 2011. Operating EPS for 2012 was $1.52, increasing from $1.31 in 2011.

GE's shares were up 3.5% in premarket trading, to $22.05.

GE CEO Jeff Immelt said the company "ended the year with a strong quarter despite the mixed global economic environment," and that "the outlook for developed markets remains uncertain, but we are seeing growth in China and the resource rich countries. With our largest backlog in history and a substantial amount of cash generated by our businesses in the fourth quarter, we have great momentum going into 2013."

The company's backlog of equipment and services orders was $210 billion as of Dec. 31. GE also said that all of its industrial segments "expanded margins in the quarter, with Industrial segment margins up 120 basis points over the prior-year period. Infrastructure orders for the quarter were $28.5 billion, up 2%, and up 7% excluding the effects of a decrease in orders for wind turbines, and [foreign exchange]."

Industrial growth was mainly outside the U.S. The company said that "Industrial segment growth market revenues increased 11%, driven by double-digit growth in Russia, Australia/New Zealand, Latin America, China, Sub-Saharan Africa and ASEAN. "

Industrial Segments

For GE's Power & Water segment, fourth-quarter revenue totaled $7.652, increasing from $7.196 billion in the third quarter, and $7.538 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011. Segment profit was $1.747 billion or the fourth quarter, increasing from $1.184 billion the previous quarter, and $1.661 a year earlier.

For Oil & Gas -- which along with Power & Water and Energy Management was separately broken out from Energy Infrastructure in December, revenue during the fourth quarter totaled $4.548 billion, increasing from $3.465 billion in the third quarter, and $4.083 during the fourth quarter of 2011. Profit for the segment was $649 million during the fourth quarter, increasing from $469 million the previous quarter, and $567 a year earlier.

Energy Management fourth-quarter revenue totaled $1.934 billion, increasing from $1.879 billion in the third quarter, but declining slightly from $1.954 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011. Segment profit was $64 million, increasing from $42 million the previous quarter, and $47 million a year earlier.
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