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Hillshire's 1Q net income falls 40 percent

The Associated Press

NEWS: The Hillshire Brands Co. said Thursday its fiscal first-quarter net income fell 40 percent due to higher costs. But the Jimmy Dean sausage maker posted adjusted earnings that beat Wall Street expectations and its shares rose.

DETAILS: Hillshire is increasing prices for its food products in the current quarter to combat higher costs, CEO Sean Connolly said in a statement. He said sales may soften because of the price increases.

The Chicago-based food company makes Ball Park hot dogs, Sara Lee desserts and Hillshire Farm lunch meat.

NUMBERS: Net income fell to $29 million, or 23 cents per share, in the three months ending Sept. 28. That compares with $49 million, or 40 cents per share, in the same period last year.

Adjusted to remove one-time charges, it reported earnings of 35 cents per share. That matched the analysts' average forecast, according to FactSet.

Revenue edged up 1 percent to $984 million from $974 million, above the $959.7 million analysts were expecting.

FUTURE: Hillshire kept its fiscal 2014 outlook unchanged. It expects revenue to "increase slightly" and adjusted earnings per share to be "flat to down mid-single digits" from the prior year. It did not provide a specific forecast.

STOCK: Up 92 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $33.19 in afternoon trading Thursday. Its shares are up 27 percent in the past year.