BP's cement contractor on the drilling rig that exploded in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 announced Monday that it is trying to negotiate a settlement over its role in the disaster, a focus of trial testimony that ended last week. Halliburton Chief Financial Officer Mark McCollum said during a conference call to discuss first-quarter earnings that talks were at an "advanced stage."
A Canada-based company plans to manufacture wind towers in a building it purchased in the eastern South Dakota city of Brandon. The Argus Leader reports that Marmen Inc. promotes itself as the largest wind tower manufacturer in North America. The company has said it plans to hire 200 people at the new plant.
Washington's budget tightening is having a minimal effect on businesses, a survey of business economists released Monday shows. The National Association for Business Economics survey asks how higher taxes and lower government spending effected businesses in the first three months of 2013.
Boeing's beleaguered 787 could be flying again within a week after federal officials approved a fix for its batteries, even though the root cause of a fire on one plane and smoke on another still isn't known. The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday it would send airlines instructions and publish a notice next week lifting the 3-month-old grounding order that day.
There were no sprinklers. No firewalls. No water deluge systems. Safety inspections were rare at the fertilizer company in West, Texas, that exploded and killed at least 14 people this week. This is not unusual. Small fertilizer plants nationwide fall under the purview of several government agencies, each with a specific concern and none required to coordinate with others on what they have found.
Kobe Steel Ltd. said Monday it has begun mass production at its aluminum forging plant in Jiangsu Province, China, after completing expansions to double its output capacity and add melting and casting processes. Kobe Steel said the 4.5 billion yen expansion was driven by a growing demand for aluminum automotive suspensions due to rapid growth in the Chinese automobile manufacture industry and a trend toward lighter vehicles.
A cement manufacturer in Lyons has agreed to pay a $1 million fine and to install controls to decrease its emissions of the pollutant nitrogen oxide, the U.S. Justice Department and the Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday. The EPA had accused Cemex, Inc., which operates the Portland cement facility, of illegally modifying its Lyons plant in a way that increased the amount of nitrogen oxide the facility released.
A slowdown in the mining business is digging a hole in Caterpillar's profits. First-quarter profit shrank 45 percent. Caterpillar lowered its expectations for full year sales and profits because its mining business is slowing. Sales of Caterpillar-branded mining machines will drop by half this year, the company said on Monday.
Fiat Chairman John Elkann says the Italian carmaker's shift to premium models remains a valid strategy as European sales continue to plummet. Elkann said Friday that Fiat, which owns Chrysler, is proceeding with its plan to launch 17 higher-margin premium models for export by 2016 to revive stagnant Italian production lines.
A dozen investigators from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board are inspecting the site of this week's fertilizer plant explosion in the Central Texas town of West. A spokeswoman for the federal agency that's charged with investigating chemical accidents says the group arrived in the small farming town on Thursday and was "inspecting the areas of impact" midday Friday.
Boeing says it will slow down production of its superjumbo 747-8 because of weak demand. Boeing builds two of the planes every month. It's slowing that rate to one and three-quarters per month. Boeing had warned that a slowdown was possible if demand didn't improve. Boeing has orders for 64 of the planes still to be built, including freighter and passenger versions.
Nissan is recalling more than 19,000 Nissan and Infiniti SUVs because a brake part can fail and make it harder for the driver to stop the car. The recall affects Nissan Pathfinder and Infiniti JX SUVs from the 2013 model year. The automaker says an iron brake caliper part wasn't made properly and can crack or fail.
The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity is giving an auto parts maker $4.4 million in tax breaks and other incentives after the company agreed to add 300 jobs at its plant in eastern Illinois. The department said Thursday that North American Lighting Inc. will add the jobs at its plant in Paris as part of a $50 million expansion.
KB Home is teaming up with Ford Motor Co. in hopes of making energy efficiency a more compelling proposition to would-be homeowners who also drive hybrid and plug-in vehicles. The homebuilder-automaker partnership announced Friday doesn't involve any financial considerations, the companies said.
The Hydraulic Institute (HI), the global authority on pumps and pumping systems, announced the 2013 Board of Directors and Officers during its Annual Meeting recently held in Fort Myers, Florida. The new Board will be primarily responsible for providing organizational oversight to the Institute and guiding the direction of its strategic plan.