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General Mills

GIS is a leading global manufacturer and marketer of branded, packaged, consumer foods with annual sales of $15.7 bn and adjusted EBITDA of $3.5 bn in F2018. In April 2018, GIS acquired Blue Buffalo, a pet food company, for ~$8 bn. The company added a new Pet segment to its existing operating segments of North America Retail, Convenience Stores & Foodservice, Europe & Australia, and Asia & Latin America. F2018 sales by operating segment were as follows: North America Retail ($10.1bn, 64%), Convenience Stores & Foodservice ($2.0bn, 12.5%), Europe & Australia ($1.9bn, 12.3%), and Asia & Latin America ($1.7bn, 10.9%). Respective operating income splits were 79%, 12%, 7.0% and 1.4%. Examples of GIS's global trademarks include Annie's, Betty Crocker, Bisquick, Bugles, Cheerios, Chex, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cocoa Puffs, Fiber One, Food Should Taste Good, Fruit Roll-Ups, Gardetto's, Go-Gurt, Gold Medal, Helpers, Kix, Lärabar, Nature Valley, Oatmeal Crisp, Old El Paso, Progresso, Raisin Nut Bran, Totino's, Wanchai Ferry, Wheaties, and Yoplait, and Blue Buffalo. (31 Oct 2018)

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US Inflation: Goods Inflation Is Back

Sector Analysis: 12 Dec 2018, 11:57 PM ET - Headline and core indexes both increased in line with expectations.  We highlight the first bought of YoY core goods inflation since 2016 and anecdotes of margin pressure from the most recent Beige Book.

IG European Consumer: 2019 Outlook Opinion Changes

Sector Outlook: 11 Dec 2018, 9:03 PM ET - We set out more on our six opinion changes in European food & beverage/HPC and retail for 2019, plus the initiation of Molson Coors, and give specific bond recommendations in order to execute them. 

US Employment: Modest Gains for Jobs & Wages

Sector Analysis: 09 Dec 2018, 9:01 PM ET - Payrolls and wages both took a step back in November.  We highlight this months employment data and discuss the possibility for manufacturing, construction, and mining employment to lead a 2019 deceleration in jobs growth.

IG European Consumer 2019: Known Unknowns

Sector Outlook: 06 Dec 2018, 10:03 PM ET - We have updated our frameworks for assessing RV in our high grade/crossover European food & bev/HPC and retail names for 2019, the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci. We also initiate coverage on Molson Coors.

US Income & Spending: Strong Start to 4Q Spending

Strategy Analysis: 30 Nov 2018, 4:37 AM ET - October consumer data delivered above expectations with strong real spending, solid income, and soft inflation.  We dig into the details and highlight strong growth in discretionary spending categories.

Consumer Pulse: Holiday Sales Update & More

Sector Analysis: 28 Nov 2018, 4:11 AM ET - Consumer holiday spending viewed through the e-commerce lens looks to be off to a strong start. The consumer economy has a mix of puts and takes, ranging from rising mortgage rates to falling prices at the pump.

US Employment: Almost Full, Keeps Eating

Strategy Analysis: 05 Nov 2018, 5:16 AM ET - Employment growth bounced back in October with a strong 250k print.  Wage growth hit a new high, but its gradual acceleration coupled with the strong job growth trend makes us question what full employment looks like.

US Productivity Is A Small Offset To Labor Costs

Sovereign Analysis: 02 Nov 2018, 5:38 AM ET - We break down 2 separate pieces of 3Q economic data that show while labor costs continue to rise, controlling for productivity growth gives a rosier picture. 

PCE Deflator: Steady in September

Worth Watching: 29 Oct 2018, 10:19 PM ET - PCE Deflator: The September income & outlays report showed another mild month for consumer price gains. The headline all-items index increased by 0.1% MoM, bringing the YoY rate to 2.0%, down from its July peak of 2.3%. The core PCE deflator (e ..

US GDP: Consumers Show Up Again

Strategy Analysis: 29 Oct 2018, 5:06 AM ET - 3Q US GDP beat expectations with a strong performance by the US consumer, inventory growth, and government spending offsetting weak trade, residential investment, and capex.

US Inflation: Consumer Prices Eke Out Another Gain

Strategy Analysis: 11 Oct 2018, 10:35 PM ET - The September consumer price index report showed weaker price gains than expected for the second consecutive month. 

US Strategy: What to Watch for on 3Q Earning Calls

Strategy Analysis: 11 Oct 2018, 4:37 AM ET - We surveyed our analyst teams for key sector level issues they will be paying close attention to with upcoming third quarter earnings calls beyond the typical sales, margins and earnings guidance. 

US Employment: 3.0% Wage Growth on the Horizon

Strategy Analysis: 05 Oct 2018, 12:24 PM ET - September nonfarm payrolls disappointed on the headline number, but under the surface, the report was solid.  Wages posted another strong gain and are just one tick away from the 3.0% YoY milestone.

A Look at BBBs that Levered Up

Strategy Outlook: 02 Oct 2018, 10:39 PM ET - We ran a screen for BBBs that have levered up since 2015YE, and surveyed our analysts for their current view on each credit as well as issues to look for that could put the credit at risk of a downgrade. 

US Income & Spending: Consumption Stays On Track

Strategy Analysis: 01 Oct 2018, 6:11 AM ET - The August income & spending report contained another solid reading for consumer spending, continued income growth, and modest inflation. We dig into the pricing environment for a few discretionary spending categories.
Focused

General Mills F1Q19: So Far So Good Post-M&A

Earnings Note: 18 Sep 2018, 1:46 PM ET - F1Q19 showed no major bogies with the Blue Buffalo integration and we still see GIS as capable of achieving 3-4 ticks of deleveraging in F2019 on its way to 3.5x net leverage by F2020.

US Employment: Finally, A Wage Growth Surprise

Strategy Analysis: 07 Sep 2018, 4:06 PM ET - The August employment report contained the long-awaited breakout in wage growth to a new cycle high. Payroll growth was also solid, and we highlight our outlook for it going forward.

US Income & Spending: Inflation Momentum Fading?

Strategy Analysis: 30 Aug 2018, 2:43 PM ET - July consumer spending and income increased largely as expected, providing a solid start to 3Q spending. The core PCE deflator hit the Fed’s 2.0% target. We highlight that the recent inflation data have cooled some from earlier this year.

US IG Strategy: Picks and Pans (July 2018)

Strategy Analysis: 23 Jul 2018, 4:36 AM ET - In this document we summarize our sector recommendations, and provide a few names within each that we like (picks) and dislike (pans). Our Picks and Pans reflect our analysts' current views. 

Consumer/Pharma: Cross-Sector Rel Val Analysis

Sector Analysis: 19 Jul 2018, 4:27 AM ET - In this report, we juxtapose OAS and leverage levels across on-the-run non-cyclical credits in the F&B and Pharma space. M&A has elevated leverage for several names, so we aim to help investors find the best spread while managing risk.

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