http://www.morningstar.com/earnings/54529415-general-electric-co-ge-q2-2013.aspx

General Electric Co GE
Q2 2013 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 07/19/2013

Operator: Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the General Electric Second Quarter 2013 Earnings Conference Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. My name is Shaquana, and I will be your conference coordinator today. As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

I would now like to turn the program over to your host for today's conference, Trevor Schauenberg, Vice President of Investor Communications. Please proceed.

Trevor A. Schauenberg - VP, Corporate Investor Communications: Thank you, Shaquana. Good morning, and welcome, everyone. We're pleased to host today's second quarter webcast. Regarding the materials for this webcast, we issued the press release earlier this morning, and the presentation slides are available via the webcast. The slides are available for download and printing on our website at www.ge.com/investor.

As always, elements of this presentation are forward-looking and are based on our best view of the world and our businesses, as we see them today. Those elements can change as the world changes. Please interpret them in that light. For today's webcast, we have a large group here. We have our Chairman and CEO, Jeff Immelt; our Vice Chairman and new CEO of GE Capital, Keith Sherin; and our new CFO for GE, Jeff Bornstein.

Now let's turn over to our Chairman and CEO, Jeff Immelt.

Jeffrey R. Immelt - Chairman and CEO: Thanks Trevor, and good morning, everybody. On the first page, our environment improved slightly in the second quarter. Emerging markets remained resilient while Europe stabilized. Orders in the U.S. were in the strongest we've seen in some time with 20% growth and overall our orders grew by 4% and backlog increased to $223 billion. Our earnings were solid. Reported EPS was $0.36, but this includes $0.02 of uncovered restructuring. On a sustained basis it would have been $0.38, up slightly from 2012 and year-to-date EPS is $0.75, up 6%.

Operations were strong in the quarter. Margins grew by 50 basis points and we are on track for 70 basis points for 2013. Our simplification efforts have resulted in $470 million of costs out year-to-date and we had a solid performance in cash. Our disciplined and balanced capital allocation plan continues. Through the half we have returned about $10 billion to investors while on the way to our $18 billion goal. As for M&A, we've completed Lufkin and Avio and Avio remains on track for a third quarter close. So all-in-all, a good quarter for operating and strategic execution.

Our orders growth remains solid at plus 4% and as I said earlier, backlog grew to $223 billion. Performance was broad based. We had services grow in five of our six businesses. Orders growth accelerated in China, the U.S. and Europe. Aviation and Oil & Gas remained very strong, with their combined backlog growing by $7 billion.

Let me give you a few other highlights. Oil & Gas orders grew by 24% or double digit growth in four of five segments. Aviation commercial spare orders grew by 19%. Healthcare Solutions equipment orders grew by 9% in the U.S. Energy Management orders grew by 19%. North American Power Generation service orders grew by 24%. We still have a few headwinds like heavy duty gas turbines, but there are signs of strength. We continue to add price to backlog with orders pricing at 29% and we have now had positive orders price for the past six quarters. This will contribute to a positive value gap in the second half of 2013 and beyond.

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