General Electric (NYSE:GE) was the recipient of a significant drop in short interest during the month of December. As of December 29th, there was short interest totalling 112,836,951 shares, a drop of 6.1% from the December 15th total of 120,142,785 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 62,396,842 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 1.8 days. Approximately 1.3% of the company’s stock are short sold.

In other news, Director Steven M. Mollenkopf purchased 5,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 16th. The shares were bought at an average cost of $18.24 per share, with a total value of $100,320.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 5,500 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $100,320. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Chairman John Leonard Flannery purchased 60,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 15th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $18.27 per share, for a total transaction of $1,096,200.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 575,477 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,513,964.79. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought 120,500 shares of company stock valued at $2,183,220 over the last quarter. Corporate insiders own 0.36% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Peak Financial Management Inc. grew its stake in General Electric by 0.3% during the second quarter. Peak Financial Management Inc. now owns 9,284 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $251,000 after acquiring an additional 25 shares in the last quarter. Puplava Financial Services Inc. grew its stake in General Electric by 0.4% during the second quarter. Puplava Financial Services Inc. now owns 11,209 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $303,000 after acquiring an additional 41 shares in the last quarter. Cutter & CO Brokerage Inc. grew its stake in General Electric by 0.3% during the second quarter. Cutter & CO Brokerage Inc. now owns 20,620 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $557,000 after acquiring an additional 67 shares in the last quarter. NorthRock Partners LLC grew its stake in General Electric by 0.9% during the second quarter. NorthRock Partners LLC now owns 8,842 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $241,000 after acquiring an additional 80 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Valmark Advisers Inc. grew its stake in General Electric by 1.4% during the second quarter. Valmark Advisers Inc. now owns 9,797 shares of the conglomerate’s stock valued at $265,000 after acquiring an additional 138 shares in the last quarter. 55.64% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on the stock. Vetr raised shares of General Electric from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $22.05 price target on the stock in a research report on Monday. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reissued a “sell” rating on shares of General Electric in a research report on Monday. Cowen reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $19.00 price objective on shares of General Electric in a research report on Wednesday, November 8th. Deutsche Bank set a $21.00 price objective on shares of General Electric and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, October 23rd. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group set a $23.00 price objective on shares of General Electric and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 17th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. General Electric currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $23.25.

Shares of General Electric (NYSE:GE) opened at $18.21 on Wednesday. General Electric has a 12-month low of $17.25 and a 12-month high of $31.45. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.14, a current ratio of 1.86 and a quick ratio of 1.53. The company has a market cap of $157,920.00, a PE ratio of 21.17, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.11 and a beta of 1.07.

General Electric (NYSE:GE) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Friday, October 20th. The conglomerate reported $0.29 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.49 by ($0.20). General Electric had a net margin of 6.08% and a return on equity of 13.72%. The business had revenue of $33.47 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $32.51 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.32 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.5% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts forecast that General Electric will post 1.07 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, January 25th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, December 27th will be given a $0.12 dividend. This represents a $0.48 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.64%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, December 26th. General Electric’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 55.81%.

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