January 31, 2019 / 3:11 PM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 1-General Electric CEO sees 2019 industrial rev rising, cash weak

(Adds context, detail, updates share price)

Jan 31 (Reuters) - General Electric Co expects industrial revenue to rise by low to mid-single-digit percent this year, as gains at renewable energy, aviation and healthcare offset a decline in the power unit, Chief Executive Officer Larry Culp said on Thursday.

The forecast, which excludes restructuring and currency changes, was one of very few projections GE gave investors as it reported fourth-quarter profit that fell below estimates but that beat Wall Street expectations for revenue and free cash flow.

GE shares were up 9.6 percent to $9.97 in early trading.

Culp told analysts in an earnings call that he expects industrial free cash flow to weaken in 2019 at it spends on restructuring in its power and renewables divisions, but will increase “substantially” in 2020 and 2021.

GE did not provide the customary current-year forecast in its year-end and quarterly earnings release on Thursday, but Culp said the company will provide specifics soon, leaving the timing unclear. (Reporting by Rachit Vats in Bengaluru and Alwyn Scott in New York; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Nick Zieminski)

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