Why General Electric Lit Up in 2012

The year is nearing its end, and now is a good time to look at what happened throughout the year to the stocks you follow. If you know the important things a company achieved, as well as any challenges it failed to overcome, then you can make a better decision about whether it deserves a spot in your portfolio.

Today, I'll look at General Electric (NYSE: GE  ) . As a member of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) , the conglomerate has a long history that dates back more than a century in delivering a wide range of products. Recently, though, the company moved back toward its roots, focusing on energy production through alternative methods like wind turbines. But revenue and earnings have been under pressure over the past year. Below, you'll find more on what moved shares of General Electric in 2012.

Stats on General Electric

Year-to-Date Stock Return


Market Cap

$220 billion

1-Year Revenue Growth


1-Year Net Income Growth


Dividend Yield


CAPS Rating


Source: S&P Capital IQ.

What happened with General Electric this year?
Over the past several years, GE has worked hard to recover from the damage its ill-fated GE Capital division caused during the financial crisis. Prior to the crisis, GE Capital was a gold mine for the company, but ever since, GE has shifted exposure away from the financial arm and toward other parts of its business.

In particular, GE is playing a role in energy production of just about every type. From nuclear reactors to wind turbines and solar-panel manufacturing, GE has greatly bolstered its energy infrastructure segment. Moreover, some argue GE could expand its energy role further. A possible buyout of First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR  ) , for example, could help increase its presence in the solar industry.

GE has other ambitious plans outside energy. The company recently decided to start a mining-equipment business, going up against Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) and other existing rivals in the space. GE is also aiming to help create an "industrial Internet" that allows products ranging from jet engines to utility turbines to monitor themselves and report potential problems to human managers. The initiative could also make certain devices more efficient as they take other information into account.

Still, GE has some concerns to address. The coming surtax on medical devices will have a big impact on its health care division, although smaller, less diversified competitor Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ: ISRG  ) has more concentrated exposure to the tax. In addition, with a big shortfall in pension funding, GE could see pressure on its earnings in the coming years.

By adapting to new conditions, GE has once again proven its staying power. Look for more exciting things to come from GE in 2013 and beyond.

Don't stop here
With a promising 2012 under GE's belt, what's in store for the company in 2013? Learn more in our premium report on the stock. Inside, our top industrials analyst gives his opinion on whether General Electric is a buy right now, breaking down GE's multiple businesses. You'll find reasons to buy or sell GE, and you'll receive continuing updates as major events unfold during the next 12 months. To get started, click here now.

Click here to add General Electric to My Watchlist, which can find all of our Foolish analysis on it and all your other stocks.

Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (7)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On December 07, 2012, at 9:13 AM, pondee619 wrote:

    "Why General Electric Lit Up in 2012"

    Perhaps because it stunk up 2011 so bad.

    2/25/11 $21.46

    Today $21.37. Almost two years and almost even.

    Yea! But, it didn't drop off a cliff. Yet

    "1-Year Revenue Growth


    1-Year Net Income Growth


    Not real stellar numbers, are they?

Add your comment.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2142128, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/28/2016 4:23:56 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 7 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,169.68 -29.65 -0.16%
S&P 500 2,133.04 -6.39 -0.30%
NASD 5,215.97 -34.29 -0.65%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/27/2016 4:00 PM
GE $28.63 Down -0.24 -0.83%
General Electric CAPS Rating: ****
CAT $83.01 Down -1.12 -1.33%
Caterpillar CAPS Rating: ***
FSLR $41.06 Down -0.05 -0.12%
First Solar CAPS Rating: ***
ISRG $663.23 Down -2.49 -0.37%
Intuitive Surgical CAPS Rating: ****