General Electric Beats on Both Top and Bottom Lines

General Electric (NYSE: GE  ) reported earnings on April 19. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended March 31 (Q1), General Electric beat slightly on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue was unchanged. Non-GAAP earnings per share grew. GAAP earnings per share increased significantly.

Gross margins shrank, operating margins expanded, net margins grew.

Revenue details
General Electric chalked up revenue of $35.01 billion. The 11 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ foresaw sales of $34.57 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were the same as the prior-year quarter's.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details
EPS came in at $0.39. The 14 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted $0.35 per share. Non-GAAP EPS of $0.39 for Q1 were 15% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.34 per share. (The prior-year quarter included -$0.02 per share in earnings from discontinued operations.) GAAP EPS of $0.34 for Q1 were 17% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.29 per share. (The prior-year quarter included -$0.02 per share in earnings from discontinued operations.)

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details
For the quarter, gross margin was 11.8%, much worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 11.8%, 20 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 10.1%, 150 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. (Margins calculated in GAAP terms.)

Looking ahead
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $36.44 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.38.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $145.08 billion. The average EPS estimate is $1.67.

Investor sentiment
The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 15,523 members out of 16,568 rating the stock outperform, and 1,045 members rating it underperform. Among 3,132 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 2,974 give General Electric a green thumbs-up, and 158 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on General Electric is outperform, with an average price target of $25.59.

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Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool owns shares of General Electric Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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  • Report this Comment On April 23, 2013, at 4:12 PM, finan505 wrote:

    With all these strong comments on GE, would you morons please tell me why the stock is down almost $3 and why it is one of the ONLY stocks not to get back to 2008 levels.

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