JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Africa is the world's fastest growing mobile phone market, an industry group report said Wednesday, citing the continent's innovative uses for cell phones. Gertrude Kitongo uses hers as a radio, library, mini cinema, instant messenger and bank teller. She even makes calls on it.
WATERTOWN, Mass. (AP) — A123 Systems Inc., which makes lithium-ion batteries for cars, said Wednesday its third-quarter loss deepened as costs nearly tripled. A123 posted a loss of $63.7 million, or 51 cents per share, compared with a loss of $43.7 million, or 42 cents per share, for the same quarter last year.
TOKYO, Nov. 9 (Kyodo) — Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday it has begun manufacturing a new four-cylinder engine at a joint venture company in Guangzhou, China, with the aim of meeting anticipated strong demand in China and increasing the autonomy of its operations there by localizing production.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Labor has announced a $3.4 million grant for re-employment and support services to about 850 laid-off workers at the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. plant in Union City, Tenn. The National Emergency Grant, announced Tuesday in Washington, was awarded to the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
CLEAR LAKE, Iowa (AP) — Nearly 70 people will lose their jobs as a storm door plant closes in the northern Iowa city of Clear Lake. Larson Manufacturing is moving the plant's production to another company plant 20 miles to the north at Lake Mills. About 90 Clear Lake workers will remain in Larson's employ by commuting to the Lake Mills plant.
CANTON, Miss. (AP) — Nissan's commercial van will be added to the production line produced at the company's plant in Canton, Miss., next year. Nissan made the announcement Tuesday. The four-row 12-passenger commercial van will feature a center console and mobile office. Nissan says the vehicle should be available in the spring of 2012.
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — Solar energy product maker Energy Conversion Devices Inc. says it has temporarily suspended manufacturing and is planning about 500 job cuts. The Auburn Hills-based company announced Tuesday that manufacturing has been halted because of excess inventory. The company says about 400 workers will be furloughed at its manufacturing facilities in Michigan, Mexico and Ontario, Canada.
DETROIT (AP) — Europe's economic woes are weighing on General Motors Co.'s profits. The company's third-quarter net income fell 15 percent from a year earlier, dragged down by losses in Europe and South America and weak earnings in all areas except North America and China. The company's shares fell 7.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Employers advertised more jobs in September than at any other point in the past three years. The increase suggests hiring could pick up in the next few months. Competition for jobs is fierce. And many employers aren't rushing to fill some because they are worried about the strength of the economy.
TOKYO (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday it is recalling about 550,000 vehicles worldwide — mostly in the United States — for problems that could make it harder to steer. The recall affects 447,000 vehicles in North America, as well as 38,000 in Japan and another 25,000 in Australia and New Zealand, said Toyota spokesman Dion Corbett.
JEANERETTE, La. (AP) — Metal Shark Aluminum Boats of Jeanerette has a $192 million contract to replace the Coast Guard's fleet of small port security boats. The company will build up to 500 of the boats, which are about 28 feet long, for the Coast Guard, president and co-owner Chris Allard said Monday.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Hawker Beechcraft Corp. says in a letter to employees that layoffs planned for later this month will have minimal effect on its Little Rock aircraft finishing plant. Arkansas Business reported (http://bit.ly/sU80U8 ) Tuesday that the letter says it's possible there will be no layoffs at the plant at Little Rock's airport.
Honda Motor Co. said Tuesday that it was tweaking production rates again at some of its North American plants because of flooding in Thailand, which has caused shortages of certain electronic plants. Honda previously cut production by half at its U.S. plants until Thanksgiving and through Nov.
MOBERLY, Mo. (AP) — The bank that is the trustee of bonds issued for a failed artificial sweetener plant in central Missouri has sued the company responsible for the project. UMB Bank filed the lawsuit against Mamtek U.S. Inc. and Mamtek International in federal court in eastern Missouri on Friday, alleging that bond agreements were violated.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Google chairman Eric Schmidt on Tuesday defended his company as a great innovator despite allegations from late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs that the Internet search giant stole ideas from Apple's iPhone. Schmidt also told reporters that he is still "very sad and recovering from the sense of loss" from Jobs' death last month and does not think it's right to comment on Jobs' words in Walter Issacson's biography.
TOKYO (AP) — Japan's Olympus Corp. said Tuesday that top executives used acquisitions to hide massive losses, reversing denials of any wrongdoing as one of the largest accounting frauds in Japanese history tarnishes the nation's corporate image. Tokyo-based Olympus, which makes cameras and medical equipment, has been battered by a scandal over a $687 million payment for financial advice and expensive acquisitions of companies unrelated to its mainstay businesses.
NORTHVILLE, Mich. (AP) — Amerigon Inc., which makes climate-controlled seats and other products for the auto industry, said Tuesday it posted a $1.6 million third-quarter loss because of costs stemming from a recent acquisition. But the Northville, Mich., auto supplier's revenue rose fourfold thanks to the acquisition of WET Automotive Systems AG, a German automotive thermal control and electronic components company that Amerigon acquired in May.
THOMAS TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — On a farm field familiar with soybeans and corn, the hopes of Saginaw County's green industry could grow toward the sun. The land behind an old farmhouse is where economic development officials hope solar industry jobs sprout in the future: Great Lakes Solar Technology Park, on a 240-acre greenfield in Thomas Township.
CANTON, S.D. (AP) — A worker died at a manufacturing plant in the southeast South Dakota city of Canton when he became caught in a machine. Officials at Adams Thermal Systems Inc. did not immediately identify the man who died Monday morning or go into detail about the incident. Company spokesman Bryan Plowman says the employee had worked for a year and a half at the plant that makes cooling systems for vehicle engines.
WAKO, Japan (AP) — Honda's human-shaped robot can now run faster, balance itself on uneven surfaces, hop on one foot and pour a drink. Some of its technology may even be used to help out with clean-up operations at the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant. Honda's demonstration of the revamped "Asimo" on Tuesday at its Tokyo suburban research facility was not only to prove that the bubble-headed childlike machine was more limber and a bit smarter.