Struggling industrial conglomerate General Electric Co. (GE) won't get a break any time soon, according to one bear on the Street who doubts that the Boston-based company can secure a turnaround as promised within the upcoming years.
J.P. Morgan analysts view a "reasonable bear case" for GE that would imply a 12-month price target of $9 for core GE, and reiterated a $11 price target, forecasting a near 20% downside from Friday close. GE shares sank 50% through the first half of 2018, sharply underperforming the broader S&P 500's 12% return. (See also: GE’s Removal from Dow Good for Investors: Goldman.)
Last week, GE shares spiked nearly 8% on news that it would spinoff its health care unit and separate its stake in oil services company Baker Hughes over the next two to three years. As it sheds its businesses, GE plans to focus on core aviation, power and renewable energy segments.
Simplified SOTP Valuation Implies 20% Downside in GE Stock
Morgan analysts are among the skeptics who doubt that next year will shape up to look much different than 2018. "2019 promising to be another ‘transition year,’ with heavy restructuring and little relief at Power, on which implied multiples show significant disconnect vs peers, particularly on cash metrics," wrote analyst Stephen Tusa in a note to clients on Monday entitled, "It’s Not That Complicated: Simplified SOTP [sum of the parts valuation] Suggests Remainco GE Significantly Overvalued."
He noted that GE management is now "messaging no decline in cash restructuring and only a model decline in booking restructuring," adding to his case for much of the same old same old at the industrial conglomerate next year.
At the stock's current valuation, Tusa indicates that the remaining GE company after its health care spinoff is trading at 26 times estimated 2019 earnings per share (EPS). Using sector multiples, he suggests that the company will lose another fifth of its value.
GE shares are trading down about 2.5% on Monday morning at $13.27 on the news. (See also: GE Sheds Transportation Business in $11.1B Deal.)