Shares of General Electric Co. (NYS:GE) surged 2.7% toward a three-year high in morning trading Monday, as the industrial conglomerate is close to a deal of more than $30 billion to combine its aircraft leasing business with Ireland-based AerCap Holdings N.V. (NYS:AER) , according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. GE's stock, which is headed for a fourth-straight gain, has run up 29.3% year to date, to add to a record quarterly surge of 73.4% in the fourth quarter. The WSJ report, citing people familiar with the matter, said GE's aircraft leasing unit, known as GE Capital Aviation Services (Gecas), is the biggest remaining piece of GE Capital, which GE has been looking to divest for years as part of its plan to shore up its balance sheet. In 2020, GE Capital suffered a revenue decline of $1.5 billion, or 17%, from a year ago, primarily because of GECAS, which was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic and the effects of the Boeing Co. (NYS:BA) 737 MAX groundings. Over the past 12 months, GE shares have rallied 48.6%, while the SPDR Industrial Select Sector ETF (PSE:XLI) has climbed 30.5% and the S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) has advanced 29.9%.
March 8, 2021, 10:20 a.m. EST