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General Electric Withdraws First-Quarter Financial Guidance

General Electric withdrew its first-quarter financial guidance due to the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. GE's preliminary checks suggest earnings below its previous guidance of about 10 cents per share.
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General Electric  (GE)  became the latest company to withdraw its quarterly financial guidance due to uncertainty around the coronavirus pandemic 

The Boston industrial group doesn't see a path to reaching its previously stated earnings guidance of 10 cents a share. 

Industrial free cash flow should come in "near" guidance of about negative $2 billion, GE said in a statement. 

"Total company adjusted earnings per share deteriorated to a greater extent than industrial free cash flow, primarily due to non-cash and timing items in aviation, renewable energy, and GE Capital."

Chief Executive H. Lawrence Culp said GE was moving quickly "to position GE to come out stronger on the other side of the covid-19 crisis. With net proceeds of about $20 billion from the BioPharma transaction now in hand, we have more flexibility to derisk and further strengthen our balance sheet." 

The company said that it would give additional details during its first-quarter-earnings call scheduled for April 29. 

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Meantime, GE has taken numerous actions to manage risk in the near term. 

"We are committed to bringing down our leverage over time as we navigate this period of uncertainty and position ourselves for the future," said Culp. 

GE Aviation is planning to reduce about 10% of its U.S. workforce. 

The company also sees a "lack of work" for about half its U.S. maintenance, repair and overhaul employees for 90 days.

GE also said previously that GE Aviation CEO David Joyce will forgo half his salary starting April 1. 

Shares of GE at last check were up 3% to $7.52.