GE’s ‘Wells notice’ is a ‘credit negative’ but doesn’t change the rating for now, Moody’s says

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Shares of General Electric Co. bounced 13 cents, or 2.1%, in afternoon trading Wednesday, to retrace a little more than half of the previous session’s selloff, which came after the industrial conglomerate disclosed the receipt of a “Wells notice” from the Securities and Exchange Commission. Moody’s Investors Service said the “Wells notice” is a “credit negative” for GE, as it highlights lingering risks of contingent liabilities, but it doesn’t affect the company’s ratings “at this time.” Moody’s rates GE’s senior unsecured debt at Baa1, which is 3 notches above speculative grade, or “junk” territory. The outlook for the rating is negative. GE’s stock sank 24 cents, or 3.7%, on Tuesday, after the company said it received notice that the SEC staff investigating GE’s revenue recognition practices and internal controls was considering recommending the SEC bring a civil action against GE for possible violations of securities laws. The stock has lost 43.6% year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has slipped 0.8%.
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