How Will This New Fuel Cell Plant Affect General Electric (GE) Stock Today?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- General Electric (GE) announced Tuesday that it will build a fuel cell manufacturing plant in New York to develop technology for fuel cells that use natural gas, according to MarketWatch.

Shares of GE were falling 0.3% to $25.90.

GE said it made a breakthrough in solid oxide fuel cells, adding that "the resulting technology could soon start producing electricity around the world." The new system can reach an "unprecedented" 65% power generation efficiency according to GE. "Overall efficiency can grow to 95 percent when the system is configured to capture waste heat produced by the process," the company said. "The basic configuration of the system can generate between 1 to 10 megawatts of power."

News of the new plant helped contribute to a fuel cell stock rally with FuelCell Energy (FCEL), Ballard Power Systems (BLDP), and Plug Power (PLUG) gaining Tuesday.

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TheStreet Ratings team rates GENERAL ELECTRIC CO as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate GENERAL ELECTRIC CO (GE) a BUY. This is driven by multiple strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • GE's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 0.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 2.0%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $4,961.00 million or 7.61% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, GENERAL ELECTRIC CO has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 5.08%.
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, regardless of the company's weak earnings results. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • GENERAL ELECTRIC CO's earnings per share declined by 17.1% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, GENERAL ELECTRIC CO increased its bottom line by earning $1.47 versus $1.38 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.70 versus $1.47).
  • The gross profit margin for GENERAL ELECTRIC CO is rather high; currently it is at 51.60%. Regardless of GE's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 8.82% trails the industry average.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: GE Ratings Report

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Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

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