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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Cadbury Rejects $16.7b Kraft Buyout

September 8, 2009 4:21 am | by Robert Barr, Associated Press Writer

LONDON (AP) — Kraft Foods Inc. on Monday proposed a 10.2 billion pound ($16.7 billion) takeover of Cadbury PLC, but the offer was immediately rejected by the British maker of chocolate, gum and candy. Cadbury shares shot up 41 percent to 803.5 pence at midday on the London Stock Exchange, about the minimum analysts suggested Kraft would have to pay to clinch a deal.

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Japan Finds Quiet Hybrids A Danger To The Blind

September 8, 2009 4:14 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer

TOKYO (AP) — An appeal of a hybrid or electric car is its super-quiet drive. But worries are growing blind people may be endangered by their silence. The Japanese government has set up a panel with automakers, organizations for the blind and consumers groups to come up with a solution, which could have such vehicles emitting what sounds like engine noise or musical sounds like a cell-phone ring-tone, officials said Tuesday.

DuPont Accuses Employee Of Exporting Trade Secrets To China

September 8, 2009 4:08 am

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — The DuPont Co. is accusing a former employee of trying to steal trade secrets and bring them back to his native China. The lawsuit was filed in late August in the Delaware Court of Chancery. It accuses Hong Meng of breach of contract and misappropriation of trade secrets.

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Global Green Cars To Build Electric Car Plant In KY

September 4, 2009 6:45 am

Global Green Cars, Inc. (GGCI) announced today that it will proceed with its plan to build an electric vehicle production facility in the State of Kentucky. Earlier this year, Governor Steven L. Beshear of the State of Kentucky pledged his support for this electric vehicle production facility and on May 28, 2009, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority approved a $15.

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NH Gov. Secures Back Pay For Neglected Workers

September 4, 2009 4:58 am

PEMBROKE, N.H. (AP) — The state has secured back pay for workers who suddenly lost their jobs when Precision Technology in Pembroke, N.H., shut its doors last week. Employees had been told to leave the business without warning, and the next morning, many of the company's 130 workers gathered outside, demanding paychecks.

'Clunkers' Program Jump-starts August Sales

September 4, 2009 4:18 am

Personal opinions and long-term impact aside, the much ballyhooed CARS program did help some automotive OEMs see significant sales increases during the month of August: Toyota U.S.A. reported August vehicle sales of 225,088 vehicles, up 10.5 percent over one year ago. Passenger cars recorded an all-time, best-ever month with sales of 142,529 units, up 32.

CT Offers $100m To Keep 1,000 Pratt & Whitney Jobs

September 3, 2009 12:37 pm | by Stephen Singer, AP Manufacturing Writer

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut Gov. M. Jodi Rell offered $100 million worth of incentives Thursday to jet engine maker Pratt & Whitney to prevent the possible loss of about 1,000 jobs. The five-year plan includes lifting a cap on tax credits for parent corporation United Technologies Corp.

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Alcoa Brightens Outlook For Global Aluminum Demand

September 3, 2009 12:29 pm

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Alcoa Inc. said Thursday it had boosted its annual forecast for global aluminum consumption, driven by higher demand from China. The largest U.S. aluminum producer now expects worldwide demand for the lightweight metal to shrink by 5.5 percent rather than 7 percent as forecast in July, when Alcoa reported its third straight quarterly loss.

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Man Killed At US Steel's Clairton Coke Works

September 3, 2009 11:44 am

CLAIRTON, Pa. (AP) — A man has died after an explosion and fire at United States Steel Corp.'s Clairton Coke Works near Pittsburgh that also injured another person. A company spokeswoman confirmed the death in Thursday's explosion, but the company isn't releasing his name. He was a contractor doing maintenance in the plant.

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2 Missing Workers Found In PA Oil Fire, 1 Injured

September 3, 2009 8:49 am

CREIGHTON, Pa. (AP) — Emergency dispatchers say two workers who were unaccounted for after oil spilled and caught fire at a plant near Pittsburgh have been found, but one has been injured. Allegheny County dispatchers say the fire at Pitt Penn Oil Co. in East Deer Township was reported about 11:30 a.

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Sun-Times Closing Chicago-Area Printing Press

September 3, 2009 8:44 am

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Sun-Times' parent company is closing a suburban printing plant, which is expected to cost 70 jobs. Sun-Times spokeswoman Tammy Chase confirms the Sun-Times Media Group plans to close its Pioneer Press printing plant in Northfield. Pioneer Press publishes dozens of Chicago-area community newspapers owned by the ailing conglomerate.

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TN Company Buys Gramercy Alumina Plant, Hikes Production

September 3, 2009 6:36 am

GRAMERCY, La. (AP) — At a time when aluminum producers are struggling with low prices and excess capacity, the new owners of the Gramercy Alumina plant in St. James Parish are ramping up production to gain market share, company officials said Thursday. "By increasing our production, we're really trying to take advantage of well-positioned assets," said Kyle Lorentzen, chief operating officer of Noranda Aluminum, which acquired full ownership of the 50-year-old alumina plant in Gramercy this week and told some of its 470 employees "if we're not growing, we're dying.

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Boeing Plane Deliveries Drop 22% In August

September 3, 2009 6:15 am

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Airplane maker Boeing says deliveries of its commercial jets slid 22 percent and orders fell 11 percent in August, as airlines cancel or postpone plans to buy new planes. Chicago-based Boeing said Thursday it delivered 28 passenger and cargo jets last month. That's down from 36 during the same month last year, according to figures posted on the company's Web site.

Laid Off Bobcat Employees 'Unhirable' In 50s

September 2, 2009 10:20 am | by James MacPherson, Associated Press Writer

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Bobcat Co., which makes small loaders and light construction equipment, announced Wednesday its Bismarck plant will be closed permanently and the bulk of the 475 jobs shifted to its plant in Gwinner in southeastern North Dakota. Union officials say laid-off workers in Gwinner will have first shot at the positions.

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Maysteel To Close WI Factory, Cut 165 Jobs

September 2, 2009 4:31 am

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. (AP) — Maysteel says it will close one of its Menomonee Falls factories, eliminating 165 jobs and relocating another 25. The Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based company makes electric power parts. The company said Tuesday it will close the local plant by the end of the year.

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France Threatens Blacklist Of U.S. Electronics Manufacturer

September 2, 2009 4:27 am

PARIS (AP) — A French minister on Wednesday threatened to ask French automakers to blacklist an American electronics company if managers don't find a way to keep its French plant open. Industry Minister Christian Estrosi has been trying to broker a deal with executives of Illinois-based Molex Inc.

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Pfizer To Pay Record $2.3b Settlement

September 2, 2009 4:21 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — People familiar with a record legal settlement to be announced Wednesday say that Pfizer Inc., the world's largest drugmaker, will pay $2.3 billion in connection with illegal drug promotions. The U.S. Justice Department plans a news conference later in the day to announce the terms of the deal.

Factory Orders Rise 1.3 Percent In July

September 2, 2009 4:16 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Orders to U.S. factories rose less than expected in July as reduced demand for petroleum products offset a jump in orders for aircraft and other transportation goods. Still, orders rose for the fifth time in six months, a sign that the manufacturing sector is continuing to recover from a steep downturn.

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Ex-Toyota Lawyer Files Lawsuit Over Cover-Up

September 2, 2009 4:11 am

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 1 (Kyodo) — A former lawyer of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. filed a lawsuit against the company in late July, alleging he was pressured to conceal information from victims of rollover accidents involving sport utility vehicles and trucks, U.S. media reported Tuesday. In the lawsuit, Dimitrios Biller accused the U.

1,200-Worker Automotive Plant Closing In AL

September 1, 2009 9:56 am

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (AP) — Continental Automotive Systems U.S. says it will close its automotive parts plant in Huntsville by Dec. 31 next year, laying off more than 1,000 workers. Monday's announcement comes a month after Continental warned that cutting costs in product development and manufacturing were necessary to save the company.

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