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General Electric seeks urgent asset sales to cut debt

Staff Writer | November 13, 2018
General Electric is pursuing assets sales with "urgency" to reduce its high debt and is unsure when its ailing power business will hit bottom, Chief Executive Officer Larry Culp said in a television interview on Monday, sending its shares down as much as 10 percent.
GE capital
America   "We have no higher priority right now"
Culp is facing tough questions about GE's financial strength and earnings prospects after he was named CEO on Oct. 1 with a mandate to turn around the 126-year-old conglomerate.

"We have no higher priority right now than bringing leverage levels down," Culp told CNBC. "We have plenty of opportunity to do that through asset sales."

GE's debt-to-equity ratio stood at 3.7 percent at the end of the third quarter, more than four times the industry average of 0.77 percent, Refinitiv data show. High debt levels can increase a company's risk of default.