Money Minute: U.S. Whiskey-Maker Turns Japanese; Pork Prices Plump

Bringin' home the bacon may get more costly.

Hogs are in short supply sending pork prices sharply higher in the future pits, and that could lead to higher consumer prices, too. The Wall Street Journal reports a virus that kills young pigs has spread to farms in 22 states. The virus doesn't threaten food safety, but it could send pork prices to record levels.

We recently reported that beef prices are also on the rise due to cattle shortages. The problem there is the severe drought in Texas and other big cattle states that has thinned the herds.

Liquor-maker Beam (BEAM) has agreed to be acquired by Suntory Holdings of Japan for $16 billion. In addition to its Jim Beam bourbon, the company also makes Canadian Club, Maker's Mark, Courvoisier Cognac and Cruzan Rum.

Here on Wall Street, trading last week held within a pretty narrow range, but we could see more action this week, as earnings season heats up. Most major banks report --
including JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Citigroup (C) and Bank of America (BAC) -- as well as General Electric (GE) and Intel (INTC). We'll also get some key economic reports, including retail sales for the all-important month of December.

The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) edged lower last week, but the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) and the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) and posted modest gains.

Dunkin' Donuts (DNKN) is planning a big push west. The coffee and doughnut chain has most of its stores in the Northeast, but sees growth potential in California, Texas and other Western states. It tried that strategy once before but had distribution chain problems.

And we'll continue to track Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT), which had one of the biggest rallies in recent memory last week. The stock soared 530 percent on Thursday and Friday after the little-known biotech company stopped a clinical trial of its liver therapy earlier than planned because of its success. But now the National Institutes of Health says the drug did lead to some abnormal spikes in cholesterol.

-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.

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Randall Mabe

I will be cancelling my Ambassadorship to makers mark today

January 13 2014 at 4:00 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
skcarcomed_0

badsomey
At least moonshine is made by ordinary Americans, and I certainly do prefer to pay my money to them than big foreign corporations.

))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Somehole you meant sell your food stamps to use to pay for getting your drink on.

January 13 2014 at 3:47 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
vettfixer

Well no more Jim Beam and Makers Mark. I won't send any profits to Japan.

January 13 2014 at 3:40 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mimpossibl

"skcarcomed_0"

badsomey
The Koch Brothers are doing everything possible to destroy unions, are they not?" Yes; and because they have a one world view that presents only their "kind" with power, their agenda includes other matters that are destructive to the U.S. itself. Could they declare to protect and defend the Constitution were they to understand that this Constitutions purpose is defined by the Preamble, it's very meaning.

January 13 2014 at 3:12 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to mimpossibl's comment
skcarcomed_0

Another paranoid Obamite with a koch(kock) obsession. LOL. Obama and the Democrooks are the ones that are destroying America little by little. What a simpleton.

Obama has no regard for the constitution and still has not figured out the meaning of transparency either.

January 13 2014 at 3:48 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
mimpossibl

usaindacrapper : What would really help the U.S. economy and the people would be if people making these cuts, cuts, cuts demands would at least take Economics 101 and some other things that tell him why terms like "circulation", "demand", "Capital", and many other terms mean. We have a real problem with people never having a class in civics or economics declaring for actions that may be harmful.

January 13 2014 at 3:09 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
skcarcomed_0

badsomey
Mr/Mrs Farce you\'re on this blog 24/7, when do you find time to go to work????

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What a simpleton. The only way that your freeloading behind would know if anyone was on here 24/7 is if you\'re on here 24/7.

January 13 2014 at 2:59 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
skcarcomed_0

badsomey
I\'m sure that you\'re a real connoisseur, when it comes to giggle juice.

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Somehole if and when you ever sober up we can address this again. SIMP <:\'(

January 13 2014 at 2:57 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
skcarcomed_0

badsomey
The Koch Brothers are doing everything possible to destroy unions, are they not?

)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Somehole is a koch(kock) obsessed Obamite who needs to lay off the whiskey, go out and get a job
and stop riding the welfare gravy train.

January 13 2014 at 2:54 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
skcarcomed_0

US whiskey makers have turned Somehole into a staggering, blithering SIMP, who doesn\'t work and rides the welfare gravy train.

January 13 2014 at 2:51 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to skcarcomed_0's comment
dumbsomey

That's not true. Anybody who knows us will tell you we're exactly as coherent when we've each guzzled a fifth of cheap hooch as we are when we're stone cold sober.

Whiskey makers have nothing whatsoever to do with our condition, you fool.

January 13 2014 at 3:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kdf821

there are plenty of wild pigs destroying peoples property all over the us lets get rid of them

January 13 2014 at 1:39 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to kdf821's comment
usaindacrapper

"STAND UR GROUND"~"STAND UR GROUND"

January 13 2014 at 3:28 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply