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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

GM Stock Climbs, Then Drops After Analyst Report

May 7, 2013 10:06 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Shares of General Motors rose more than 4 percent early Monday after an analyst raised his earnings estimates and stock price target. But the shares gave up all of their gains and then some in late-afternoon trading. Last week, GM said its first-quarter profit fell 14 percent to $865 million, or 58 cents per share.

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Safety Agency Watches Ford Vans For Rust Signs

May 7, 2013 10:05 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

U.S. auto safety regulators are monitoring about 100,000 Ford and Mercury minivans that were not covered by a recall issued earlier this year for rust problems. Ford recalled about 230,000 Ford Freestar and Mercury Monterey minivans in March to fix rust in the wheel wells that can cause the third-row seats to come loose.

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Ethiopian Air Wants Compensation For 787 Grounding

May 7, 2013 10:04 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The chief executive of Ethiopian Airlines says his company will seek compensation from Boeing for the grounding of its 787 Dreamliner planes. Tewolde Gebremariam told The Associated Press on Tuesday his company will soon start discussions with Boeing over compensation.

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Q&A: Barriers To American Re-shoring

May 7, 2013 8:05 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

Over the last few years, there has been an increasing amount of buzz around the concept of “re-shoring,” in which an American company decides it’s more financially viable to bring manufacturing operations back to the U.S. from a foreign land. Generally speaking, company leaders are finding that the “total cost” of producing overseas actually makes outsourcing the worse financial picture.

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PwC: Industrial Manufacturing M&A Rises

May 7, 2013 8:00 am | by PwC US | Articles | Comments

Financial investors in the industrial manufacturing sector stepped off the sidelines in the first quarter of 2013, recording a substantial increase in merger and acquisition activity. While strategic investors continued to drive deal activity during the first quarter, financial investments were well ahead of the pace for the same period in 2012.

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FAA Safety Oversight Of Aircraft Repairs Faulted

May 6, 2013 2:21 pm | by Joan Lowy, Associated Press | News | Comments

The government's oversight of hundreds of domestic and overseas repair stations that service U.S. airliners is ineffective and doesn't target the factors most likely to present safety risks, the Department of Transportation's inspector general said Monday.

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HK Dockworkers Accept Offer, End 40-Day Strike

May 6, 2013 2:19 pm | by Kelvin Chan, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Hong Kong dockworkers have accepted a 9.8 percent pay increase, ending a 40-day strike that slowed traffic at one of the world's busiest ports. About 90 percent of the workers voted late Monday in favor of the offer from four middleman contractors that provide staff to a container terminal operator controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing.

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GOP Seeks Alternative To Overtime Pay

May 6, 2013 2:17 pm | by Sam Hananel, Associated Press | News | Comments

It seems like a simple proposition: give employees who work more than 40 hours a week the option of taking paid time off instead of overtime pay. The choice already exists in the public sector. Federal and state workers can save earned time off and use it weeks or even months later to attend a parent-teacher conference, care for an elderly parent or deal with home repairs.

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Adidas: Asia Laborers Can Send Complaints Via Text

May 6, 2013 2:16 pm | by Juergen Baetz, Associated Press | News | Comments

German sports gear maker Adidas said Monday it is encouraging workers in factories of some of its Asian suppliers to anonymously share possible grievances directly with the company via text message. The new hotline service will help bridge the communication gap between management and workers, enabling employees to "simply send an SMS when they feel their rights are breached," Adidas AG said.

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Pressure On Bangladesh, Retailers To Fix Factories

May 6, 2013 2:14 pm | by Farid Hossain, Stephen Wright, Associated Press | News | Comments

In the aftermath of a building collapse that killed more than 530 people, Bangladesh's garment manufacturers may face a choice of reform or perish. The shoddily constructed building's collapse has put a focus on the high human price paid when Bangladeshi government ineptitude, Western consumer apathy and global retailing's drive for the lowest cost of production intersect.

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TX Fertilizer Plant Targeted By Thieves In Past

May 6, 2013 2:11 pm | by Nomaan Merchant, Associated Press | News | Comments

Burglars occasionally sneaked into and around a Texas fertilizer plant in the years before a massive, deadly explosion — sometimes looking for a chemical fertilizer stored at the plant that can be used to make methamphetamine, according to local sheriff's records.

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Unemployment At 4-Year Low, Markets At New Highs

May 6, 2013 1:21 pm | by The Associated Press | Videos | Comments

The United States economy showed last month why it remains the envy of industrialized nations: In the face of tax increases and federal spending cuts, employers added a solid 165,000 jobs in April. The U.S. economy is now boasting the lowest unemployment rates in four years.

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China City Quashes Protest Against Petro Plant

May 6, 2013 10:28 am | by Didi Tang, Associated Press | News | Comments

Residents say they are worried the plant would pollute the air and water, and question why the plant is being built in a region prone to earthquakes. Pengzhou is in the same fault zone as the 2008 Wenchuan quake that left 90,000 people dead or missing, and for an earthquake last month that killed at least 196 people.

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LG Chem To Begin MI Production In July

May 6, 2013 10:26 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

An advanced battery maker said it plans to launch commercial production of automotive lithium-ion battery cells in southwestern Michigan in July. LG Chem Michigan Inc., a subsidiary of South Korean company LG Chem, announced Sunday night that test runs have begun at the facility in Holland and that it anticipates shipping products by the end of the summer.

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CAT To Close Toronto Factory

May 6, 2013 10:25 am | by The Canadian Press | News | Comments

Heavy equipment giant Caterpillar Inc. says it is closing a tunnel-boring machine factory in Toronto by mid-2014, throwing 330 workers out of a job. Caterpillar acquired the facility in 2008 when it bought Lovat Inc. and got into the tunnelling business, but now says the plant is no longer a "strategic growth opportunity" and will be shut down.

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TX Plant That Blew Up Carried $1M Policy

May 6, 2013 10:22 am | by Christopher Sherman, Associated Press | News | Comments

The Texas fertilizer plant that exploded last month, killing 14 people, injuring more than 200 others and causing tens of millions of dollars in damage to the surrounding area had only $1 million in liability coverage, lawyers said Saturday.

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Moberly Dismissed From Mamtek Investor Lawsuit

May 6, 2013 10:20 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The city of Moberly and its industrial development agency have been dismissed from a civil lawsuit filed by spurned investors in the failed Mamtek artificial sweetener factory. The Columbia Daily Tribune reported that a Cole County judge on April 25 dismissed the city and the Moberly Industrial Development Authority from a 2012 suit filed by Shelter Insurance Cos. and the Waddell & Reed investment brokerage.

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Solar Plane Lands In AZ, First Leg Of U.S. Trip

May 6, 2013 10:18 am | by Bob Seavey, Susan Montoya Bryan, Associated Press | News | Comments

Alone in the single-seat cockpit and high above the American Southwest, pilot Bertrand Piccard could hear only his plane's gear box and the quiet whine of four electric motors. No noisy jet engines. He's flying Solar Impulse, considered the world's most advanced sun-powered plane.

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Preventing Discharge Damage: Conductive Rolling Bearing Greases

May 6, 2013 8:05 am | by Heiko Stache, Manager Business Unit – Bearing Technology & Sabine Petri, Product Manager, Klüber Lubrication | Articles | Comments

Damage caused by electric discharge is a well-known issue, and today it is more prevalent than ever. It primarily affects rolling bearings in machines susceptible to static charging. In many cases, conductive grease made especially for these applications can provide an inexpensive and efficient solution to this problem, while at the same time ensuring optimum rolling bearing lubrication.

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An Opportunity For Intelligent Device Manufacturers

May 6, 2013 8:00 am | by Steve Schmidt, Vice President of Corporate Development & Strategy, Flexera Software | Articles | Comments

Opportunity beckons intelligent device manufacturers. They must evolve their products from fixed function and disconnected systems to flexible and seamlessly connected devices. Making products smarter will provide a wide array of benefits.

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