Tyson Foods reported second-quarter net income of $166 million, 6.4 percent higher than one year ago when the protein giant posted profits of $156 million. Revenues rose to $8.27 billion, up from $8 billion in the previous year.
Tyson had solid earnings in its chicken and pork segments, but its beef division dragged on the company’s bottom line, as expected.
"Our multi-protein business again proved advantageous, producing solid earnings for the fiscal second quarter," said Donnie Smith, Tyson’s president and CEO. "We were pleased with the rate of improvement in our chicken business. The chicken, pork and prepared foods segments all were in or above their normalized operating margin ranges, while beef essentially broke even despite extremely challenging market conditions."
Consumer broadband, business services and net one-time charges pushed Windstream Corp.’s first-quarter performance higher.
The Little Rock-based telecom and data provider saw its net income more than double to $64.6 million on revenues of $1.54 billion. One year ago, Windstream posted earnings of $29.4 million on revenues of $1.02 billion.
A one-time gain of $57 million was recorded for two sales of wireless spectrum during the quarter. The company was hit with about $13 million in one-time charges from the closure of its merger with New York-based PAETEC.
Dillard’s, Inc., reported first-quarter net income of $95 million, a 24 percent increase from a year ago when the upscale retailer reported profit of $76.7 million. Little Rock-based Dillard’s saw first quarter revenues rise 5.6 percent to $1.55 billion. Same store sales were up 5 percent during the quarter.
Dillard’s is traditionally light on commentary regarding its quarterly performance.
CEO William T. Dillard said, "We are happy to report a very strong start to 2012 with our seventh consecutive quarter of increased same store sales as well as record setting earnings and earnings per share performances."
The company did note that sales were strong in all merchandise categories "with the exception of the home and furniture and juniors’ and children’s apparel categories."
Sales trends were strongest in ladies’ accessories and lingerie, followed by shoes, men’s apparel and accessories, and cosmetics, Dillard’s said.
After two months of record or near-record gambling numbers, the two casinos in Arkansas saw lower wager totals at its electronic gambling games. Still, the numbers are far above year-ago levels.
In April as its live horse racing season drew to a close, Hot Springs-based Oaklawn reported electronic games of skill (EGS) wagers of $76.8 million. That figure is up nearly 40 percent from a year ago. Payouts for the month topped $71.6 million.
At Southland in West Memphis, coin-in from EGS wagers cleared $138.8 million, a 59 percent rise from the previous April. Payouts exceeded $130.2 million during the month.
April’s totals were the third highest month in Oaklawn history, while Southland’s numbers were the fourth highest since electronic casino-style gambling began in November 2006.
Year-to-date, EGS wagers at the two casinos reached $918.67 million, just shy of the billion-dollar mark.
Hawker Beechcraft files Chapter 11, no immediate layoffs planned
Hawker Beechcraft filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy last week and the company said that immediate job cuts are not in store. However, the
Wichita, Kansas-based airplane manufacturer did say that as it reviews its production lines in bankruptcy, layoffs could occur.
Hawker Beechcraft has a large manufacturing operation in Little Rock that employs roughly 450 workers. It also has facilities in Chester, England, and Chihuahua, Mexico.
Beebe ups funding in current fiscal year
Less than two weeks after an improving month of state revenues, Gov. Mike Beebe announced an increase in the general revenue forecast for the last two months of the current fiscal year, which ends June 30.
Beebe said that with the adjustment, an additional $39.4 million will flow into the budget, "fully funding Category ‘B’ of the Revenue
Stabilization Act. This includes $10 million in "rainy-day" money to help with unforeseen costs in the coming months, as well as additional support for Medicaid, higher-education institutions and some state agencies."
Post Office announces compromise to keep rural locations open
The U.S. Postal Service announced a new strategy on Wednesday aimed at keeping rural post offices open, while achieving cost savings of nearly $500 million annually.
The Postal Service says it is losing close to $18 billion a year.
The newly announced plan would keep post offices open, but with "modified retail window hours" to match customer use. Access to the
retail lobby and for P.O. boxes would remain unchanged. Postal officials said the town’s zip codes would be retained.
The USPS will also institute a voluntary early retirement incentive for more than 21,000 non-executive postmasters. The new strategy would be implemented over a two-year period and would not be completed until September 2014.