DHR - Danaher Corporation

NYSE - NYSE Delayed price. Currency in USD
142.99
+6.84 (+5.02%)
At close: 4:04PM EST
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Previous close136.15
Open139.26
Bid142.80 x 900
Ask142.81 x 800
Day's range138.96 - 143.03
52-week range94.59 - 147.33
Volume13,746,217
Avg. volume2,344,553
Market cap102.707B
Beta (3Y monthly)0.82
PE ratio (TTM)42.42
EPS (TTM)3.37
Earnings date27 Jan 2020 - 31 Jan 2020
Forward dividend & yield0.68 (0.50%)
Ex-dividend date2019-09-26
1y target est152.71
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    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- General Electric Co.’s path to recovery is a long one, but the company no longer seems lost in the woods.  In releasing its third-quarter results on Wednesday, GE also raised its guidance for 2019 free cash flow and now anticipates its industrial businesses could bring in as much as $2 billion this year. That’s a $4 billion swing from GE’s worst-case scenario in its initial March forecast. There’s a fine line between setting a low bar and sandbagging the numbers, but GE’s rosier outlook is supported by signs of stabilization in its beleaguered power unit and there being less of a drag than anticipated from the transition of a supply-chain financing program to a third party. The aviation business was also able to largely offset the negative impact of the continued grounding of Boeing Co.’s 737 Max. Those were key worry points that ended up not being as worrisome.It wasn’t a perfect quarter and there are some notable footnotes to that guidance increase. Still, a lack of nasty surprises and minimal signs to date of macroeconomic weakness in GE’s aviation and health-care businesses make this a victory for CEO Larry Culp. A flurry of deleveraging activities in the last two months had raised concerns that GE was trying to give itself some good news to talk about if the actual quarterly numbers were disappointments, particularly amid growing concerns that a manufacturing slowdown was deepening. That fear appears unfounded, at least as far as the last three months are concerned for GE’s businesses.Shares of GE rallied as much as 14% on the report, essentially erasing a slide since its last earnings update in July that in part reflected concerns over the impact of slumping interest rates. The decline in rates forced GE to reassess its expectations for the returns it will get on assets supporting the company’s long-term-care insurance business. While this contributed to a $1 billion pre-tax charge in the latest quarter as the company bolstered its GAAP reserves, it’s better than the “ somewhere south” of $1.5 billion adjustment – before other offsets – that Culp had flagged in September. And it’s certainly nowhere in the ballpark of what’s implied in the $29 billion reserve shortfall Bernie Madoff whistle-blower Harry Markopolos claimed existed.Operating profit for the power segment turned negative again after a few quarters of positive numbers. But margins did improve in that business – to negative 3.7% from negative 14.8% a year earlier – which GE says reflects better pricing discipline. The company now expects the cash burn at the power unit to be no worse than the $2.3 billion outflow last year (adjusted for a reorganization of that business), versus an initial prediction of a substantial year-over-year weakening. The health-care division saw a nice lift in profit margins and a 5% jump in sales, even as its imaging business struggled in China and some larger U.S> projects got pushed out. And aviation rebounded from an uncharacteristically weak second quarter. These are all positive data points that speak to Culp’s push for operational improvements.What hasn’t changed is that even at $2 billion, GE’s free cash flow will be very weak this year. The current forecast compares to $4.5 billion last year and $5.6 billion in 2017. While a stronger starting point in 2019 certainly helps, GE will have to overcome a number of challenges to get back to even those depressed levels. Already, GE will lose about $1 billion in free cash flow in 2020 from the sale of its biopharmaceutical business to Danaher Corp., per analysts’ estimates. Despite an improved performance in 2019, there’s no update at this time for GE’s expectation for the power unit to continue burning cash next year. And GE has to keep spending on restructuring. It again lowered its estimate for the cost of these cutbacks this year (which was a boon to its free-cash-flow outlook) in part because of the “timing” of politically fraught conversations in Europe over facilities and employees absorbed as part of its disastrous acquisition of Alstom SA’s power business. Keeping economic headwinds at bay will also be key.  Meanwhile, GE will get lower contributions from Baker Hughes as it continues to wind down its stake; a divestiture in September pushed that holding below 50%, forcing the company to take an $8.7 billion pre-tax charge in the quarter.Culp is doing what he needs to do to stop the bleeding at GE. Now the conversation shifts to what kind of company this is going to look like when he’s done and how far this turnaround can go.    To contact the author of this story: Brooke Sutherland at bsutherland7@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Beth Williams at bewilliams@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Brooke Sutherland is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and industrial companies. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Has it only been a year?Tuesday marks the one-year anniversary of General Electric Co.’s ouster of CEO John Flannery in favor of board member Larry Culp, an outsider respected for his operational prowess and dealmaking as the former head of Danaher Corp. It was an abrupt change for a company that usually moves at a glacial pace, but the prospect of a steep quarterly operating loss in GE’s struggling power unit and a $22 billion goodwill writedown on the disastrous acquisition of Alstom SA’s energy assets convinced the board that Flannery wasn’t moving nearly fast enough to save the company.  It feels like much more time has passed since that fateful management switch, and that’s partly to Culp’s credit: He’s been much more aggressive and decisive than his predecessor about divesting assets to shore up GE’s financial position, and he has worked systematically to refashion the board and instill a new operating ethos in the industrial businesses. Culp cut GE’s dividend, started unwinding its stake in the Baker Hughes energy business and agreed to sell its biopharma operations to Danaher for $21.4 billion. Thus far, he’s managed to avoid the kind of massive surprise writedowns that marred Flannery’s tenure.Culp’s furious pace of activity has helped stabilize GE, which is no small feat when you think back on the mess he inherited. But the stock is still lower than when he started and has stalled out at about $9 or $10. And at this point, most of the big, obvious buttons for change have been pushed. The company could sell its remaining health-care assets, although the fact that it’s scheduled an investor day focused on the business for December suggests it wants to keep that in the fold for now. A divestiture of its aircraft-lessor arm Gecas has been bandied about but is highly difficult to execute in practice. And GE’s biggest demons – including weak underlying cash-flow capabilities and risky black holes at GE Capital that despite Culp’s best efforts have at best turned a shade of mud-brown – have no quick fix.There’s not much for Culp to do now other than grind it out on cost cuts and operational rigor, and cross his fingers that the industrial weakness that's emerged around the globe won’t get any worse. GE's pension and insurance liabilities are at risk of ballooning from the slump in interest rates. As such, Culp’s second year seems likely to be lighter on big announcements and highly dependent on the whims of the broader marketplace. A stock rally from here depends on investors taking the long view.So far, they’ve been willing to accept any scrap of marginal good news as a sign of changing tides. Culp has somehow even managed to make the prospect of zero free cash flow from the industrial businesses this year feel like a win. But the path to a significant improvement in cash flow in 2020 and 2021 remains highly murky in the best of times, and an outright fantasy in a recession environment. One of the more fascinating aspects of GE’s challenges is that they emerged at a time when other manufacturers were doing well. That’s changing: The Institute for Supply Management's gauge of U.S. manufacturing activity fell deeper into a contraction in the month of September in the weakest reading since 2009. Meanwhile, a slowdown in the Chinese economy risks threatening even GE’s crown-jewel aviation unit.One thing that Culp does have control over is the company’s messaging. The biggest mistake of his tenure so far, in my opinion, has been his failure to do away with the myriad of opaque adjustments that have cluttered GE’s financial statements and presentations. For all Culp’s talk about 2019 being a “reset year,” this is the one thing he hasn’t been willing to reset and it has cost the company some credibility. Culp hasn’t ignored investors’ calls for more transparency: The company hosted a so-called “teach-in” to educate investors on the vagaries of its long-term-care insurance business, for example, and gave cash-flow numbers for its operating units on an annual basis. But the disclosures tend to be piecemeal, and when they do come are presented in a way that flatters the company or relies on overly optimistic assumptions. My Bloomberg Opinion colleague Matt Levine recently flagged a paper that concluded at least some investors are misled by non-GAAP expense exclusions. He finds this theory frustrating for reasons you can read here, but in the case of GE, it’s not hard for me to believe that it’s true.GE is now on the hunt for a new chief financial officer, having announced in July that Jamie Miller would be stepping down from the job. Investors are focused on who the new hire could be and the prevailing thought is that Culp has to get someone with a big name and a respected background. Perhaps. But what he really needs someone who’s willing to reverse GE’s culture of carefully engineered earnings guidance and tell it straight to investors. A candidate concerned about guarding his or her hard-earned reputation might not be willing to do that, but it’s the kind of reckoning GE still needs. To contact the author of this story: Brooke Sutherland at bsutherland7@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Beth Williams at bewilliams@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Brooke Sutherland is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and industrial companies. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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