NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- General Electric (GE) shares are down 0.6% to $25.26 in early market trading on Friday as the company prepares to raise its quarterly dividend, according to Bloomberg.
CEO Jeffrey Immlet said that the company's dividend would grow in conjunction with its earnings which would imply a 2% increase from the dividend's current 22 cent per share payout. Bloomberg forecast an increase that could be as high a 3 cents per share.
GE cut its quarterly dividend in 2009 during the recession for the first time since the Great Depression to 10 cents per share from 31 cents per share. The dividend was last increased to its current level in December of last year.
Must Read: Warren Buffett's 25 Favorite Stocks
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 a few notable 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, reasonable valuation levels, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."