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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

J&J Execs, FDA Take Heat For 'Phantom' Recall

October 1, 2010 4:47 am | by Matthew Perrone, AP Health Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Johnson & Johnson executives and the Food and Drug Administration both shouldered the blame Thursday for a secret recall in which hired contractors quietly bought up defective painkillers to clear them from store shelves. J&J Chief Executive William Weldon told House lawmakers the company "made a mistake" in conducting the so-called "phantom recall," which is one of a string of problems that have drawn congressional scrutiny In the same committee hearing, the FDA's deputy commissioner, Dr.

Weath Gap Hits Manufacturing Workers Hard

October 1, 2010 4:46 am | by Jim Fitzgerald and Vicki Smith, Associated Press Writers

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. (AP) — A Wall Street adviser leaves early for work to avoid panhandlers at his suburban train station. In coal country, a suddenly homeless man watches from a bench as wealthy women shop for dresses. A down-and-out waitress sits glumly on her stoop across the street from a gleaming suburb.

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HP's New CEO Befuddles Investors, Wall Street

October 1, 2010 4:45 am | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Hewlett-Packard Co.'s board upset many investors when it forced out Mark Hurd as CEO nearly two months ago. Now, those directors appear to have baffled Wall Street with its selection of HP's new leader — Leo Apotheker, who lost his job running German business software maker SAP earlier this year after he didn't live up to expectations.

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At Paris Auto Show, Gasoline Is Still King

October 1, 2010 4:44 am | by Colleen Barry and Greg Keller, AP Business Writers

PARIS (AP) — Hybrids and electric cars may get top billing. But at the Paris Auto Show, conventional engines are showing they have plenty of mileage left. New gas and diesel models have carbon emissions not far behind those of hybrids, and there's nothing old-fashioned about their small size and highly efficient internal combustion technology.

Economists Expect Manufacturing Growth In September

October 1, 2010 4:43 am

NEW YORK (AP) — Growth in the manufacturing sector likely continued in September but at a slightly slower pace, economists say. Makers of goods such as PCs, autos, furniture and factory machinery helped pull the economy out from the recession because of overseas sales and strong demand from businesses that needed to replenish their stockpiles of goods.

Boeing Receives $5.3 Billion Fighter Jet Order

September 29, 2010 3:39 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Navy is ordering $5.3 billion worth of F/A-18 Hornet aircraft from Boeing Co. Boeing says the order is for 124 aircraft to be delivered between 2012 and 2015. The order includes 66 Super Hornets and 58 of its new Growlers, which are two-seat jets equipped with radar-jamming equipment and other gear to knock out a wide array of electronic devices.

HP Paints Rosy Outlook Despite Missing A CEO

September 29, 2010 3:21 am | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Hewlett-Packard Co. offered a rosy financial outlook Tuesday without giving any guidance on the biggest issue hanging over the world's largest technology company: the identity of its next CEO. The leading maker of personal computers and printers has been looking for a new leader since its board pressured Mark Hurd, its CEO of five years, to step down in an early August scandal revolving around allegations of sexual harassment and deceptive expense reports.

Kid's Science Kits May Be No More Thanks To CPSC

September 29, 2010 3:16 am | by Jennifer C. Kerr, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — One of the tools that teachers use to get kids jazzed about science — hands-on science kits — could face an uncertain future amid a debate on safety. The Consumer Product Safety Commission has been mired for weeks in deliberation as it writes guidelines on what makes a product a "children's product.

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Caterpillar To Build Mini Excavators In China

September 29, 2010 3:13 am

NEW YORK (AP) — Caterpillar Inc., the world's largest marker of construction and mining equipment, said Wednesday it plans to open a new facility in Wujiang, China, to build mini hydraulic excavators. The company currently supplies Chinese customers with mini excavators produced at a facility in Xuzhou, China, and with machines produced in Sagami, Japan.

Iowa-Based AMS 'Anxious' To Build Electric Cars

September 29, 2010 3:12 am

WEBSTER CITY, Iowa (AP) — A Webster City company is close to beginning production of electric vehicles. AMS Inc. owner Joe Fleming says the firm is about two weeks away from producing the autos and is putting final preparations in place. The Webster City Freeman Journal reports Tuesday that the company will start out assembling about 38 cars a week and increase that to about 100 cars a week in December.

Warehouse Shooter Quarreled With Woman He Shot 11 Times

September 29, 2010 3:09 am

CRETE, Neb. (AP) — Investigators say the man who shot three co-workers at a cold-storage warehouse in southeast Nebraska and then fatally shot himself had argued with the woman he shot 11 times. The Saline County Sheriff's office released an update Tuesday on its investigation of the Sept.

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Hershey Approves $200 Million Expansion Project

September 29, 2010 3:07 am

HERSHEY, Pa. (AP) — Chocolate maker Hershey has gained township approval for a $200 million expansion project that would shift production from a century-old plant to a modern facility nearby. Derry Township supervisors on Tuesday approved the final land development plans for the 243,000-square-foot expansion at a plant in West Hershey.

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India's Economy Primed To Grow 10 Percent A Year

September 28, 2010 4:47 am | by Vijay Joshi, Associated Press Writer

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — India's economy could easily grow 10 percent a year if the government makes dramatic improvements to infrastructure, boosts productivity and improves education standards, a top Indian policymaker said Tuesday. At a time when developed countries are barely growing, India expects to achieve a growth rate of 8.

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California Bans Cadmium In Children's Jewelry

September 28, 2010 4:45 am | by Justin Pritchard, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California became the largest U.S. state to limit the toxic metal cadmium in children's jewelry on Monday, effectively creating a new national standard ahead of promised federal action. Lawmakers and public health officials have worried that kids who suck or bite jewelry containing cadmium — a known carcinogen — could suffer long-term poisoning, including problems with their kidneys and bones.

RIM Announces 'Enterprise-Ready' Mobile Tablet

September 28, 2010 4:44 am | by Andrew Vanacore, AP Business Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — The company that gave us the BlackBerry — still the dominant phone in corporate circles — thinks its business customers will have room in their briefcases for at least one more device: the PlayBook. Research in Motion Ltd. showed off the tablet for the first time Monday and is set to launch it early 2011, with an international rollout later in the year.

Oracle Sues Chip Makers Over Price-Fixing

September 28, 2010 4:42 am

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Oracle Corp. is suing Micron Technology Inc. in federal court, saying the semiconductor maker and other companies artificially inflated prices for microchips. Oracle says Micron and other conspirators, including South Korea's Hynix and Samsung and Germany's Infineon, artificially inflated prices above what Oracle's Sun Microsystems business should have paid for them.

Senate Dems Try To Punish Firms That Export Jobs

September 28, 2010 4:40 am | by Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press Writer

UPDATE: 11:52am WASHINGTON (AP) — Tax legislation that would have punished U.S. firms that export jobs has failed in the Senate. The bill failed to reach the 60 votes required to advance in the 100-member chamber. Democrats held the vote Tuesday nonetheless to display their commitment to economic recovery just five weeks before the Nov.

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Chrysler Ends Suspensions, Fires Boozing Workers

September 28, 2010 4:39 am

DETROIT (AP) — Chrysler Group LLC says it has fired 13 plant workers a Detroit TV station caught drinking alcohol and smoking what appeared to be marijuana during breaks. Chrysler manufacturing chief Scott Garberding told WJBK-TV in a Sept. 22 report that the automaker identified some of the workers from Detroit's Jefferson North plant on tape and was pursuing the others.

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After A Year-Long Shortage, Canned Pumpkins Return

September 27, 2010 4:58 am | by Sarah Skidmore, AP Food Industry Writer

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Pumpkin lovers can relax: A nearly yearlong shortage of the canned stuff is over. That means an end to the hoarding, rationing and even pumpkin profiteering that have been going on since heavy rain ruined last year's harvest and caused a shortfall. But the country's top producer says this year's crop is healthy and cans are arriving in stores.

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Tenn. Court Eases Burden On Job Discrimination Lawsuits

September 27, 2010 4:57 am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — In a decision that some legal observers found surprising, the state Supreme Court has reversed precedent and made it easier for workers to sue their employers when they believe they were fired illegally. The court ruled 3-2 this week that employers must prove that workers' claims of discrimination or retaliation are false or else face a trial, according to The Tennessean.

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