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GE shares fall as J.P. Morgan analyst downgrades, lowers PT further

GE shares fall as J.P. Morgan analyst downgrades, lowers PT further
FILE PHOTO: The logo of U.S. conglomerate General Electric is pictured at the company's site of its energy branch in Belfort, France, February 5, 2019. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler/File Photo   -   Copyright  Vincent Kessler(Reuters)
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(Reuters) – Shares of General Electric Co fell about 6 percent on Monday after J.P. Morgan’s Stephen Tusa, a top-rated analyst on the stock, downgraded and further cut his target price to a Street-low of $5.

Tusa, a long-time bear on the stock, cited significant liabilities and little free cash flow to support the company’s ongoing reset and cut his rating to “underweight” from “neutral”, an about-turn from his upgrade in December.

“Investors are underestimating severity of challenges and underlying risks at GE and overestimating value of small positives,” Tusa wrote in a note.

Tusa said investors are “significantly over projecting” the bounce in free cash flow and sees weakness in the company’s power and renewables unit.

He also expected GE Capital Services unit to likely consume cash for the foreseeable future, while aviation fundamentals were weaker than what meets the eye.

GE’s new Chief Executive Officer Larry Culp in March called 2019 a “reset year” and said free cash flow at GE Power would turn positive only in 2021.

On Monday, European Union antitrust regulators fined the company 52 million euros (44.84 million pounds) for providing misleading information related to the takeover of Danish rotor blade maker LM Wind two years ago.

GE’s shares were down at $9.45 in early trading and have lost about two-thirds of their value since late 2016.

(Reporting by Rachit Vats in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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