Hormel 4Q net income up 17 percent

AUSTIN, Minnesota (AP) — Hormel Foods Corp. says its fourth-quarter net income rose 17 percent on better prices for turkey and lower grain costs.

The company cited strong sales for its Jennie-O Turkey Store and refrigerated foods divisions.

The maker of Spam, Dinty Moore stew and other prepared foods said its net income for the quarter was $121.1 million, or 90 cents a share, compared with $103.9 million, or 77 cents a share, during the same period last year.

The performance easily topped Wall Street expectations and Hormel said it was boosting its annual dividend by 21 percent, or 18 cents, to $1.02 per share.

Revenue for the quarter was $2.063 billion, compared to $1.675 billion last year.

The company said higher grain costs will be a risk in fiscal year 2011, and said it expects to earn between $3.10 and $3.20 per share.

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