Posted by Rick Stine
on February 27, 2009
, Stock Market
For weeks, if not months, investors have been betting that General Electric had to cut its dividend to preserve cash. And the company finally did it this afternoon.
GE, you recall, has a majority of its business in financial services (and a chunk in real estate) and we all know generally what has happened to that business in recent months. On a dividend yield basis (13.6% as of yesterday’s close), the market was screaming for a cut. But the company has been adamant about maintaining that dividend.
In late January during a conference call about its 4Q earnings, CEO Jeff Immelt tried to head off the dividend question in his prepared remarks: “The key thing is to maintain our disciplines. We believe that the dividend represents a good shareholder return in this environment and we
continue to run the Company to be AAA. So, we have a lot of cash, we have improved the liquidity, our priorities remain the same. I think we have really reflected a balanced plan in GE Capital. Our priorities for 2009 are just in line with our December outlook, which is to grow the company organically, maintain the GE dividend…”
Posted by Gabriella Stern
on February 27, 2009
Just published on Dow Jones Newswires:
Old-time newsrooms really were as atmospheric as they’ve been portrayed in TV shows and movies, the characters as unusual as fiction. The Rocky Mountain News’s imminent death got me thinking about the news biz in the late-1970′s/early-1980′s heyday of the American metropolitan daily.
One summer, I was hired to cover the night police beat at the Rocky, tasked with covering whatever crimes and tragedies occurred between 4 p.m. and midnight. It was an awesome job.
A college student, I had turned down a fairly prestigious internship at an (now deeply troubled) East Coast newspaper to work at the Rocky. I rationalized this decision – baffling to my parents and classmates – by saying Denver was proffering a “real” job rather than a make-work internship.
In my heart I knew I was more comfortable at a work-a-day paper than a preppy bastion.
I learned a lot that summer, including this practical lesson: Work as many nights, weekends and holidays as you can because there’s a better chance of getting your stories on Page One when the seasoned star reporters are off duty.