GE’s Baker Hughes reports surprise negative free cash flow, shares fall

Baker Hughes reported negative free cash flow for the first quarter at a time energy investors have been pushing companies to aggressively shore up capital for dividends and buybacks, sending its shares down as much as 8.5 percent.

Oilfield service companies, including bellweather Schlumberger NV and Halliburton Co, are planning to spend less in 2019, following in the footsteps of oil producers who have cut budgets in response to shareholder pressure for capital discipline rather than spending to grow their top line.

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