GE CEO Culp says he will use asset sales to raise cash and bring leverage down, feels the ‘urgency’

US News

General Electric‘s Chairman and CEO Larry Culp said Monday that he feels the “urgency” to reduce the company’s leverage and will do so through asset sales.

Culp spoke to CNBC’s David Faber in an interview on “Squawk on the Street.”

“We have no higher priority right now than bringing those leverage levels down,” Culp said.

“We need to bring the leverage down,” Culp added, saying he thinks GE has “got plenty of opportunities through assets sales to do that.”

Culp emphasized that he will not rush the process of deleveraging even as he feels the pressure to move quickly and decisively.

Shares of GE were down 1.6 percent in premarket trading Monday.

Culp was appointed chairman and CEO on Oct. 1, a month before GE reported third-quarter profits which were sharply below Wall Street forecasts. Additionally, GE slashed its quarterly dividend to a penny a share in a dramatic first move for Culp.

GE shares have fallen more than 50 percent this year. The stock on Friday slipped below $9 a share for the first time since the financial crisis.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.