General Mills, Inc. Earnings: Profit Rises for Fourth Straight Quarter

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS) reported its results for the fourth quarter. General Mills, Inc. is the manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer foods sold through retail stores. It also supplies branded and unbranded food products to the food service and commercial baking industries.

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General Mills Earnings Cheat Sheet for the Fourth Quarter

Results: Net income for the processed and packaged goods company rose to $320.2 million (48 cents/share) vs. $211.9 million (31 cents/share) in the same quarter a year earlier. A rise of 51.1% from the year earlier quarter.

Revenue: Rose 3% to $3.63 billion YoY.

Actual vs. Wall St. Expectations: GIS reported adjusted net income of 52 cents/share. By that measure, the company fell in line with the mean estimate of 52 cents/share. Estimates ranged from 49 cents per share to 53 cents per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $3.68 billion.

Quoting Management: Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ken Powell said, “This past year represented a challenging operating environment for food manufacturers, as we experienced the return and rapid acceleration of cost inflation for various food ingredients and energy. We’re generally pleased with our 2011 sales and profit results, which met the key targets we set for the year and represent performance consistent with our long-term growth model.”

Key Stats:

The company has now seen net income rise in three-straight quarters. In the third quarter, net income rose 17.9% and in the second quarter, the figure rose 8.6%.

The company has met estimates for the past two quarters. It reported net income of 56 cents in the third quarter.

Competitors to Watch: ConAgra Foods, Inc. (NYSE:CAG), General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS), TreeHouse Foods Inc. (NYSE:THS), Lancaster Colony Corp. (NASDAQ:LANC), Kraft Foods Inc. (NYSE:KFT), J&J Snack Foods Corp. (NASDAQ:JJSF), Seneca Foods Corporation (NASDAQ:SENEB), The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAIN), H.J. Heinz Company (NYSE:HNZ), The J.M. Smucker Company (NYSE:SJM), and Ralcorp Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:RAH).

Stock Performance: Shares of GIS are down over 1% this morning…

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(Source: Xignite Financials)