GE predicts sales rise in 2011

General Electric said it expects rising demand for heavy equipment to drive strong profit growth in 2011 in an update last night, promising to beat Wall Street expectations of a dip in turnover. The company forecast that sales will be up to five per cent more than those seen in 2010, driving profit even as margins come under pressure from research and acquisition costs, including its £800m purchase of Wellstream announced this week.