General Motors says sales of its Chevrolet Volt electric car will break a monthly record in August. The company says it already has sold more than 2,500 Volts this month with two days left. The old record was 2,000 in March. A spokeswoman says about one-third of the sales are in California, where Volt owners can drive alone in carpool lanes. She says sales are growing in other states.
Two major Chinese solar panel makers reported dismal second-quarter results and lowered their shipment forecasts Wednesday, the latest blows to an industry in turmoil. JA Solar Holdings Co. Ltd.'s second-quarter loss widened from a year earlier, the company said Wednesday. Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd. swung to a net loss after posting net income in the same quarter a year earlier.
Expressing alarm at Europe's debt problems, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao called on Greece, Spain and Italy to embrace budget cuts and get their finances in order after meeting Thursday with visiting German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Merkel was in Beijing for talks aimed at boosting trade and allaying Chinese fears about Europe's heavy government debts.
Officials from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency heard a plea Wednesday for more time to study a federal plan for reducing emissions from taconite plants that create haze over Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and Voyageurs National Park.
The Carlyle Group says it is buying DuPont's performance coatings business for $4.9 billion in cash, giving it another investment in the automotive and industrial segments. The private equity firm will also take on $250 million of DuPont's unfunded pension liabilities.
A Chinese-born American convicted of stealing trade secrets from Motorola was sentenced Wednesday to 4 years in prison in a case that prosecutors hoped would send a message to those who might be tempted to siphon vital information from U.S. companies.
Government efforts to reverse China's economic slump are taking effect and growth is "stabilizing at a slow pace," the head of the country's planning agency said Wednesday. The statement by the minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission came amid a flurry of mixed signals that show some activity picking up but export orders and corporate profits weakening.
The Ford Fiesta is a versatile, budget-conscious small car with a stylish interior and upscale car options such as heated leather seats and voice-recognition controls. The Fiesta also has higher U.S. government fuel economy ratings than does a gasoline-powered Honda Fit.
JA Solar Holdings Co. Ltd.'s second-quarter loss widened from a year earlier, the company said Wednesday, as it became the latest victim of turmoil in the Chinese solar panel industry. JA also lowered its outlook for the year, and its stock, which trades as American depositary shares on the Nasdaq, plunged nearly 9 percent in afternoon trading.
Hospira Inc. said Wednesday that it will pay $200 million to buy antibiotic manufacturing and research and development facilities from an Indian drug company. Hospira is buying the facility in Aurangabad from Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals. Hospira said the acquisition should reduce its costs, help it maintain its supply of key antibiotics like penicillin, and help develop future products.
A long-delayed South Dakota beef-processing plant given new life when Korean investors took over in 2009 is without an opening date more than six years after it was first proposed. Land for the $109M Northern Beef Packers plant in Aberdeen was secured in 2006, but financial issues, lawsuits, delinquent property taxes, flooding, an economic downturn and millions of dollars in liens have repeatedly pushed back the opening date.
The U.S. economy grew at a tepid 1.7 percent annual rate in the April-June quarter, suggesting growth will stay weak in the second half of the year. Slightly stronger consumer spending and greater exports were the main reasons the Commerce Department reported Wednesday that growth was better than its initial estimate of 1.5 percent.
Money-losing Japanese electronics maker Sharp Corp. is calling for about 2,000 early retirement applications under its turnaround plan. Under that plan, announced earlier this month, Sharp is trimming 5,000 jobs, or nearly 9 percent of its global work force, during the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013.
An agricultural equipment company is laying off 35 workers in West Tennessee. According to The Jackson Sun, Behlen Manufacturing will shift work to its plants in Columbus, Neb., or Baker City, Ore., and maintain only a distribution center in Huntingdon. The employees being laid off by Oct. 31 will be offered jobs at the other two plants.
Kraft Foods Group officials say the company's manufacturing facility in Bentonville will close next year. Kraft Vice President of Operations Jim Durkin says the company will achieve greater efficiencies of scale by combining the majority of the plant's production with external partners. Durkin says Bentonville is a smaller plant and its size isn't suitable for the scale the company needs going forward.