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Baker Hughes to Eliminate GE Reference From Ticker & Name

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Baker Hughes, a GE company recently announced that it will change its name to Baker Hughes Company. Moreover, the Class A common stock of the oilfield service player will be traded under a new ticker symbol of "BKR."

Baker Hughes will eliminate references of General Electric Company (GE - Free Report) from its name as the U.S. industrial conglomerate has lowered its ownership stake in the oilfield service company to 38.4% from 50.4%.

General Electric has closed the secondary offering of 132.25 million shares of BHGE Class A common stocks. Notably, the underwriters have fully exercised their options and purchased an additional 17.25 million Class A common shares. Moreover, in a private transaction, Baker Hughes has completed the repurchase of 11,865,211 shares of BHGE Class B common stock. With the sale of shares of Baker Hughes, General Electric has amassed net proceeds of $3 billion.

Investors should know that the merger of the struggling oil and gas business of General Electric with Baker Hughes was not appreciated by the market. In fact, the new entity — Baker Hughes, a GE company — has witnessed almost a 60% drop in stock price since the completion of the deal in July 2017.

With the lack of market acceptance, General Electric has reportedly been planning to exit the merger so that it can use the proceeds to lower its debt burden. Investors should also know that Harry Markopolos, an accounting expert, recently delivered a report that accused General Electric of incorporating cash and earnings of Baker Hughes in its own financial statements to hide losses. Hence, many analysts expect Baker Hughes to be better off if it operates as an independent company.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Presently, Baker Hughes carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked players in the energy space include National Oilwell Varco Inc. (NOV - Free Report) and World Fuel Services Corporation (INT - Free Report) , both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

National Oilwell is likely to see earnings growth of 75% in 2019.

World Fuel’s earnings beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing four quarters, the average positive earnings surprise being 16.4%.

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