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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

GE To Produce 228 Wind Turbines

August 2, 2011 9:02 am

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (AP) — General Electric Co. and Wind Capital Group said Monday that they reached a deal for 228 wind turbines along with operations and maintenance services for a pair of projects in Oklahoma and Kansas. Financial terms were not disclosed. Under the agreement, GE will supply 94 of its 1.

Americans Cut Spending For First Time In 2 Years

August 2, 2011 9:00 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans cut their spending in June for the first time in nearly two years after seeing their incomes grow by the smallest amount in nine months. The latest data offered a troubling sign for an economy that is adding few jobs and barely growing. Consumer spending dropped 0.

U.S. Auto Industry Remains Unsure With Weak July Sales

August 2, 2011 8:57 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers

DETROIT (AP) — Car buyers kept visiting dealerships in July, but not in big enough numbers to shake the auto industry's unease about its recovery. Analysts predicted only a slight rise in U.S. sales of new cars and trucks for July. A lack of discounts and continuing shortages of Japanese cars kept many buyers away, causing sales to sputter for the third straight month.

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Workers Fired For Collecting Unemployment

August 2, 2011 8:53 am

GOSHEN, Ind. (AP) — A recreational vehicle factory in northern Indiana has fired more than 20 people for collecting unemployment benefits while also collecting paychecks for their jobs. Keystone RV fired the workers from the Goshen factory Monday after reviewing monthly reports from the state Department of Workforce Development for a year, said Timothy Edwards, the factory's human resources manager.

850 Hanford Workers Face Layoffs

August 2, 2011 8:50 am

RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — About 850 union members are facing layoffs in two months as Hanford contractors cut workers because federal stimulus money for cleanup work at the nuclear reservation in Washington state is running out. The president of the Hanford Atomic Trades Council, Dave Molnaa, told the Tri-City Herald on Monday he has not seen layoffs of that magnitude since the mid-1990s.

Plan Would Trade Electric Rate Cuts For Jobs

August 2, 2011 8:48 am

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio regulators are proposing that companies get breaks of up to 20 percent on their electric bills based on the number of jobs they create and investments in the state, while other electric customers would pay more to cover much of the discounts. The plan is drawing mixed reactions from business groups and is on the radar of a state consumer watchdog, The Columbus Dispatch reported Tuesday.

Copper Prices Fall On Weak Manufacturing Data

August 2, 2011 5:33 am | by Sandy Shore, AP Business Writer

Copper didn't have much of a chance to extend its brief rally. Weak manufacturing data from the United States and China combined with a stronger dollar Monday to snap two consecutive days of higher copper prices. Copper for September delivery fell 6.95 cents to settle at $4.41 a pound.

Wrangler To Rebuild Plant After Tornado

August 2, 2011 5:31 am | by Bob Johnson, Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The largest employer in the small, northwest Alabama town of Hackleburg announced Monday night that it plans to rebuild a Wrangler plant wiped out by a massive April tornado, prompting cheers and celebration among workers and townsfolk. VF Corp. officials delivered the news that they would rebuild the distribution center destroyed by the April 27 storm that killed 18 people in Hackleburg in Marion County.

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Man Killed In AR Plant Accident Was Electrocuted

August 2, 2011 5:27 am

MARMADUKE, Ark. (AP) — A Brookland man who died after an accident at the American Railcar Industries factory in Marmaduke was electrocuted. The Greene County coroner says the state medical examiner has listed the cause of death of 28-year-old Joshua Buchanan on July 25 at American Railcar Industries as electrocution.

Boeing Receives $172M Korean Air Order

August 2, 2011 5:25 am

SEATTLE (AP) — Boeing Co. said Monday that it received an order from Korean Air for two additional 737-900 extended range jetliners worth $171.6 million at Boeing list prices. The airline said it is in the process of revamping its fleet with technologically advanced airplanes, and completed a cabin refurbishment project for its mid- to long-haul flights early this year.

CAT Plans $50M ND Plant Expansion

August 2, 2011 5:23 am

WEST FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A $50 million expansion project is planned at a North Dakota heavy equipment manufacturing company. Caterpillar Inc. officials and Gov. Jack Dalrymple announced the plans Monday for the company's West Fargo plant. It's expected to create about 250 new jobs, nearly doubling the current workforce at the plant.

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Ford Recalls 1M Pickup Trucks

August 2, 2011 5:20 am

NEW YORK, (Kyodo) — Ford Motor Co. is recalling a total of 1.1 million pickup trucks over a problem related to metal straps holding gas tanks that could rust and cause the tanks to fall, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Monday. The recall covers three types of pickup trucks, including certain 1997 through 2004 F-150 models, the NHTSA said.

July Another Weak Month For Auto Sales

August 1, 2011 9:27 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer

DETROIT (AP) — Car shoppers worried about the U.S. economy last month and that kept sales in a funk. U.S. sales of new cars and light trucks are expected to rise only slightly in July, as the debate over the debt limit and other economic worries kept buyers at home. Automakers are scheduled to report July sales starting around 11 a.

Lockheed Martin Wins $60M Army Contract

August 1, 2011 9:24 am

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Defense contractor Lockheed Martin said Monday that it has received a $60 million contract from the Army to provide a night vision sensor for Apache attack helicopters. The follow-on pact includes 23 Arrowhead night vision sensor kits for the National Guard, plus U.

Honda Considers New Mexico Plant For Fit Subcompact

August 1, 2011 9:22 am

TOKYO, Aug. 1 (Kyodo) — Honda Motor Co. is considering building a new plant in Mexico to make the Fit subcompact, which is currently exported to North America from Japan, company officials said Monday. Honda may begin building the plant as soon as next year with the aim of starting production in 2014, the officials said.

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China Secretly Recruited 10,000 Workers For Aircraft Program

August 1, 2011 9:19 am

SHANGHAI, Aug. 1 (Kyodo) — After China confirmed for the first time last week that it is pursuing an aircraft carrier program, residents in Changxing Island just north of Shanghai said authorities have secretly recruited 10,000 workers in an apparent move to build China's first domestic aircraft carrier.

New Mileage Standards Aim For Less Fuel Use

August 1, 2011 9:14 am | by Dina Cappiello, Tom Krisher, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama and automakers ushered in what could be the largest cut in fuel consumption since the 1970s on Friday with a deal that would save drivers money at the pump and dramatically cut heat-trapping gases coming from tailpipes. The agreement pledges to double overall fuel economy to 54.

Manufacturing Growth Hits Lowest Level In 2 Years

August 1, 2011 9:11 am | by Daniel Wagner, AP Business Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Manufacturers had their weakest growth in two years in July, a sign that the economy could weaken this summer. The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing executives, said Monday that its index of manufacturing activity fell to 50.9 percent in July from 55.

American Axle 2Q Profit Nearly Doubles

August 1, 2011 5:37 am

DETROIT (AP) — Auto parts supplier American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. said Friday that its second-quarter profit nearly doubled on higher sales stemming from the continued increase in vehicle production. The Detroit-based company also boosted its profit prediction for the full year, citing updated production schedules at its customers and continued recovery in consumer demand for full-size pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles.

GM Received $17M In TN Grants Before Moving Jobs To MI

August 1, 2011 5:35 am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — General Motors received nearly $17 million in job-training grants from the state of Tennessee nearly three years ago, tapping an unexpected source of cash at a time the automaker teetered on the brink of collapse, according to a published report. Those grants made GM the biggest single recipient of cash for job training from the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, according to a database obtained by The Tennessean.

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