Today in the Fortune 500: Grocery loyalty, Lockheed’s jet prices jacked up, and Pepsi moves to Russia.

December 3, 2010, 6:50 PM UTC

The Fortune 500 comes out just once a year, but the companies on it make headlines every day. Here then are today’s highlights of news and happenings coming from the biggest names in business.

This is a row of Cash Registers at a Target st...
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By Shelley DuBois, reporter

KROGER MAKES MONEY ON LOVE from its customers, the company says, citing consumer loyalty as the reason the grocery chain increased third quarter sales even while dropping prices. That’s despite concern that Kroger’s (KR) low pricing strategy would come back to haunt it. [Wall Street Journal.]

SHOOTING HIGH Target (TGT) expects to take off financially this holiday season since it already significantly upped its sales numbers for November compared to a year ago. [ABC.]

COST OF DOING BUSINESS, ALSO HIGH companies may reveal, depending on the fallout from a financial law passed in July that could demand some of the Fortune 500 to disclose if their merchandise is made of minerals mined in war-torn African countries such as the Congo. Target and Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) are fighting to limit the scope of the law. [Wall Street Journal.]

COOL YOUR JETS The Pentagon gave a very stern finger-wag to Lockheed-Martin (LMT) for raising the price of its F-35 fighter jets. The cost of the jets, which increased by over $40 million each, will pinch the government’s defense budget. [Reuters.]

THE MADOFF BLAME GAME continues. Now, a trustee is suing JPMorgan Chase (JPM) for allegedly abetting the infamous Ponzi scheme. [CNNMoney.]

PACK A PARKA, PEPSI because it’s time to go to Russia. On Thursday, Pepsi (PBG) bought $3.8 billion worth of Russia’s leading beverage company Wimm-Bill-Dann Dairy & Juice Co., yanking control of the Russian beverage market from Coca Cola (KO). [Bloomberg Businessweek.]

ALL A-TWITTER A breakdown of the five ways the Fortune 500 companies use social media. [Mashable.]

DON’T QUIT YOUR DAY JOB When he’s not working in marketing for a Fortune 500 company, an artist who goes by “the Tailer” put stickers of different figures over the icon of a person hailing a taxi on the sides of New York cabs. Some images include Moses, Wonder Woman and “a Hasidic guy.” [The New York Post.]