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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

202 To Lose Jobs At MO Briggs & Stratton Plant

September 16, 2011 7:13 am | News | Comments

POPLAR BLUFF, Mo. (AP) — A large southeast Missouri employer is cutting more than 200 jobs. The Poplar Bluff Daily American Republic (http://bit.ly/neW1pb ) reports that lawnmower maker Briggs & Stratton Corp. said Thursday it will lay off 202 workers at the Poplar Bluff plant starting Oct.

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SC Electronics Plant To Cut 15 Percent Of Workers

September 16, 2011 7:11 am | News | Comments

ROCK HILL, S.C. (AP) — An electronics plant in Rock Hill is releasing about 15 percent of its staff. The Herald of Rock Hill reported Friday that TE Connectivity has eliminated 57 jobs at the plant that makes electronic connectors. Company spokesman Mike Ratcliff says the reductions come because of a restructuring and a slowdown in business.

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Gov, GM Talk TN Expansion

September 16, 2011 7:05 am | by Erik Schelzig, Associated Press | News | Comments

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam's office confirmed Thursday that the state is in talks with General Motors to expand production at the automaker's Tennessee plant. The state's economic development chief, Bill Hagerty, was in Detroit to meet with GM officials, as were mayors representing communities surrounding the Spring Hill plant that stopped assembling the Chevrolet Traverse in 2009.

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Alcoa To Invest $300M In New Jobs, Plant

September 16, 2011 7:02 am | by Michael J. Crumb, Associated Press | News | Comments

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Alcoa Inc. will invest $300 million to expand and add 150 jobs to its Davenport plant to meet the growing demand for demand from the automotive industry as automakers work to meet federal guidelines for increasing gas mileage and lowering emissions, company officials announced Thursday.

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PA Unemployment Made Largest Jump In Two Years

September 16, 2011 7:00 am | News | Comments

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's unemployment rate increased substantially in August as the national economy slowed, jumping by the largest amount in more than two years, the state Department of Labor and Industry said Thursday. The jobless rate increased from 7.8 percent in July to 8.

UAW, GM Agreement May Be Near

September 16, 2011 6:57 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — It looks like the United Auto Workers union and General Motors Co. are nearing an agreement on a new contract. UAW Vice President Joe Ashton, the union's chief negotiator, told workers in an email update Friday that bargainers are getting "very close" to the framework of a deal.

Exec: GM To Profit In U.S. Despite Slowdown

September 16, 2011 6:25 am | Videos | Comments

General Motors will turn a profit on its U.S. operations even with vehicles sales at their current levels, says Steve Girsky, vice chairman of corporate strategy and business development. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

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Sikorsky To Trim Workforce Worldwide

September 16, 2011 5:40 am | by Susan Haigh, Associated Press | News | Comments

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. announced on Thursday that it is trimming its worldwide workforce of 18,000 by about 540 jobs to remain competitive in the helicopter design, manufacturing and service industry. Paul Jackson, the company's director of communications, called the move to cut about 3 percent of the workforce "a difficult decision.

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Locked-Out Armstrong Workers Reject Contract

September 16, 2011 5:19 am | News | Comments

MARIETTA, Pa. (AP) — Workers at a central Pennsylvania ceiling tile plant have overwhelmingly rejected the company's contract offer. Union workers have been locked out of the Armstrong World Industries plant in Marietta, Lancaster County since July 17. About 85 percent of the plant's 260 workers on Thursday voted 'no' to the contract offer on Thursday.

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General Dynamics Wins $1.8B Navy Contract

September 16, 2011 5:18 am | News | Comments

BATH, Maine (AP) — General Dynamics Corp. said Thursday that the U.S. Navy awarded its shipbuilding subsidiary a $1.8 billion contract to build the next two in a series of new destroyers. The so-called Zumwalt-class warships are scheduled to be delivered to the Navy in 2015 and 2018.

Air France Orders 50 Boeing, Airbus Planes

September 16, 2011 5:17 am | News | Comments

PARIS (AP) — Air France-KLM says it has ordered 50 long-haul planes from Airbus and Boeing and has the option to buy another 60. Europe's largest airline by passengers said Friday that the order was for Airbus' A350-900 and Boeing's 787-9 planes. The order is for 25 planes from each of the rival manufacturers and will be finalized by the end of the year.

Johnson Controls Shanghai Investigated For Lead Poisoning

September 16, 2011 5:12 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — Shanghai's environmental watchdog ordered two factories in its suburbs to halt production pending an investigation into the source of lead poisoning among children in a nearby village. The Shanghai Environmental Protection Bureau said in a notice on its website Friday that it was studying lead emissions from the two factories, one of which is a large lead-acid battery plant run by U.

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Volkswagen Plans To Invest $85B In Tech

September 16, 2011 5:09 am | News | Comments

BERLIN (AP) — Volkswagen AG says it plans to invest €62 billion ($85.5 billion) in innovation and technology projects, primarily in Germany. Europe's largest automaker said Friday the investment between 2012 and 2016 will focus on the development of more environmentally friendly cars like hybrids and electric vehicles, new drive systems and the modularization of production.

Opening The Doors To Innovation

September 16, 2011 5:02 am | by Louise Rainone, Vice President of Marketing, PCDworks | Articles | Comments

Picture it. It was a rare but perfect sunny, 80-degree day in the city of Chicago and a 100 or so people gathered to talk about the future of innovation. Hailing from Texas -- where the temperature has exceeded the 100-degree mark for 60 days and counting -- what better way could I spend three days in August? I recently attended the 3rd Annual Open Innovation Summit at the Knickerbocker Hotel in the heart of Chicago’s Miracle Mile.

Manufacturing Technology Orders Up 102.9 Percent

September 16, 2011 5:01 am | Articles | Comments

July U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $506.97 million according to AMTDA, the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association, and AMT, The Association For Manufacturing Technology.  This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTO program, was up 7.3 percent from June and up 92.

Honeywell Boosts Copper, Tin Refining Capacity

September 15, 2011 9:21 am | News | Comments

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Honeywell International Inc. said Thursday that its electronic materials division will more than double its refining and casting capacity for high-purity copper and tin at one of its plants to meet rising demand from the semiconductor industry. Demand for high-purity copper for advanced chip designs continues to increase, the Morristown, N.

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House Passes Bill Targeting Boeing Labor Case

September 15, 2011 9:07 am | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican-dominated House approved a bill Thursday that would undercut the government's labor dispute with Boeing Co., wading into a case that has angered business groups and become a major political issue in the GOP presidential primary. The measure, approved on a 238 to 186 vote, would ban the National Labor Relations Board from ordering any employer to shut down plants or relocate work, even if a company violates labor laws.

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August Consumer Prices Rose On Higher Food, Energy Costs

September 15, 2011 8:57 am | News | Comments

Consumer Prices Rose 0.4 Percent in August on Higher Food and Energy Costs The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.4 percent in August, building on last month’s 0.5 percent increase . Once again, higher energy costs led the way, up 1.2 percent for the month.

Michigan Jobless Rate Up 0.3 Points To 11.2 Percent

September 15, 2011 8:51 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Michigan's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose 0.3 percentage points to 11.2 percent in the latest monthly figures, the state announced Wednesday. The state's unemployment rate in August continued to exceed the nationwide rate, which was 9.1 percent in August, according to the Michigan Department of Technology, Management & Budget.

Detroit Three Extends Contract With UAW, Talks Continue

September 15, 2011 8:45 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Negotiations between General Motors, Chrysler and the United Auto Workers union continued Thursday even though bargainers missed a key deadline to agree on a new contract. The union, which represents 111,000 workers at Detroit's carmakers, agreed to keep working under the old GM and Chrysler contracts, which expired Wednesday at 11:59 p.

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