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Flannery's Legacy at GE, The New NAFTA, & Musk Settles | Free Lunch

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On today’s episode of Free Lunch, Associate Stock Strategist Ryan McQueeney explains why stocks gained as the U.S. and Canada reached an agreement to update NAFTA. The host also highlights stories involving leadership changes at Tesla and GE, as well as Chipotle’s new loyalty program.

Later, he discusses the brief legacy of now-former GE CEO John Flannery.

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Free Lunch is the newest show from Zacks Investment Research. It is streamed live, four times per week, and features breaking news and analysis from Zacks strategists. Free Lunch is available on YouTube, Facebook Live, Twitter, Ustream, and more.

U.S. stocks rallied on Monday morning as trade representatives from the U.S. and Canada beat out a midnight deadline and reached an agreement to revise NAFTA. The new deal, which also includes Mexico, will be known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA.

It will still be months before each country’s legislature confirms the USMCA, but it looks like all sides involves will bring home specific “wins,” with the deal primarily adjusting rules related to the automotive manufacturing industry.

Wall Street was also reacting to stores involving key company executives on Monday morning. Notably, Tesla (TSLA - Free Report) founder and CEO Elon Musk decided to settle charges of fraud levied by the SEC. Musk and Tesla will each pay $20 million fines, and the CEO will step down as chairman and appoint two independent directors to meet the settlement demands.

In other news involving key company executives, General Electric (GE - Free Report) surprised investors this morning by announcing that John Flannery is out as the struggling conglomerate’s CEO. Flannery lasted just 13 months in the position and will be replaced by Larry Culp, former CEO at Danaher Corp. (DHR - Free Report) .

Meanwhile, Chipotle (CMG - Free Report) once again showed that its new CEO is willing to try new things, as the fast-casual Mexican chain today announced that it is piloting a loyalty program in three markets. The new program, Chipotle Rewards, could roll out around the country eventually and represents one of a few discounting campaigns used by the company.

On the first half of today’s show, Ryan recaps these stories. Make sure to check out this segment for the key facts and Ryan’s perspective on the headlines!

Later, the host dives further into the GE story, examining the company’s 13 months under Flannery in terms of share price performance and earnings outlook.

Over the past year or so, GE has been a regular tenant of the Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) list, and the stock dropped more than 50% during Flannery’s tenure. But there were some positives, including the implementation of a detailed turnaround plan which included shedding key assets and paring down debt.

With this in mind, Ryan looks at several key GE charts illustrating Flannery’s time as chief executive. Make sure to check out our second segment for more info on how the stock performed, what analysts thought of its earnings outlook, and more, during the reign of the now-former CEO!

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