Unstructured Finance

Check Out Line: Smithfield Foods back in the black

Check out Smithfield Foods turning a quarterly profit for the first time since 2008.

Smithfield hamThe company — probably best known by consumers for brands such as Butterball — also said its hog unit should improve in the fiscal year that starts this May, after being a drag on results for some time.

Things have already started to pick up, even though that particular business is not yet profitable.  The hog unit lost $55.6 million in the latest quarter versus a loss of $253.6 million a year earlier.

Also in the basket:

Best Buy bets on 3D TV, but no quick payoffs seen

Wendy’s Peltz eyes supersizing THL’s CKE bid (New York Post)

Burberry accuses TJX of selling counterfeit goods

Digital mirror: fashion brands convey glamour online

(Photo from www.smithfield.com)

Vilsack rips media over swine flu, I mean, H1N1

Hog markets are depressed. Farmers struggle to put food on the table. Hard times are seeping into the rural economy, hurting owners of grocery and hardware stores.

Blame the media, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, unleashing several lengthy rants about the evils of oversimplification during a 25-minute teleconference with reporters on Thursday.

Vilsack scolded the media for continuing to call the new strain of pandemic H1N1 flu by its more common name: swine flu.