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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

MAPI: Advanced Manufacturing Could Hold Promise For American South

September 9, 2013 2:06 pm | by The Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI)

A new report finds that the implementation of advanced manufacturing in the American South could help the region realize its economic potential and make a vital contribution to an industry-led strategy for a revival in U.S. economic fortunes. 

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Photo Of The Day: Automakers Show Off At Auto Show

September 9, 2013 10:16 am | by David McHugh, Sarah DiLorenzo, The Associated Press

The world's automakers are showing off their shiniest, most advanced vehicles at the Frankfurt Auto Show, which opens this week. Among the 70 world premieres are a notable number of new cars powered either by batteries or hybrid gas-electric systems. There are also outlandish concept cars that flaunt technology and design but aren't intended for sale.

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2 Firefighters Hurt At Factory Blaze

September 9, 2013 10:13 am | by The Associated Press

Officials say two Evansville firefighters were treated at a hospital after they were hurt at the scene of a blaze at a plastics manufacturing plant. Crews were called to the Industrial Plastics Group factory on Sunday after a passer-by saw smoke coming from the building. 

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Energy Dept. Loses $42M On Loan To Van Maker

September 9, 2013 10:11 am | by Matthew Daly, Associated Press

The Energy Department said it will lose about $42 million on a loan to a now-shuttered Michigan company that made vans for the disabled. Vehicle Production Group suspended operations in February and laid off 100 workers. The company had paid back $5 million of a $50 million federal loan this spring.

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China's August Exports Accelerate, Imports Slow

September 9, 2013 10:09 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer

China's August export growth accelerated, adding to signs of a gradual recovery for the world's second-largest economy, while import growth weakened. Exports rose 7.2 percent to $190.7 billion, accelerating from July's 5.1 percent growth, customs data showed Sunday. Imports rose 7 percent to $162.1 billion, but that was down from July's 10.9 percent.

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121-Year-Old Factory Is Eye On Milwaukee's Past

September 9, 2013 10:07 am | by John Schmid, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

The last surviving manufacturer in the city's Third Ward, the Harri Hoffmann shoe polish company, continues to produce leather creams and lotions in a 121-year-old factory that's dripping in history — in a way that few other vintage factories can claim, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. The freight elevator, quintessential in a six-story brick building, is powered entirely by water.

Icahn Ends Takeover Battle For PC Maker Dell

September 9, 2013 10:04 am | by The Associated Press

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn is ending his bitter takeover fight for struggling computer maker Dell a few days before shareholders are scheduled to consider the latest buyout offer from company founder Michael Dell. Icahn says he still opposes Michael Dell's bid but has determined it would be almost impossible to defeat it in a vote scheduled for Thursday.

Disston Company Celebrates Move To New Facility

September 6, 2013 5:04 pm | by Disston Company

Disston Company, manufacturer of hole saws, band saw blades, jig saw blades, reciprocating saw blades, drill bits, and other hand and power tools, held an open house August 30, 2013 celebrating its move to its new facility in Chicopee. Following welcoming remarks from dignitaries and a ribbon cutting ceremony, Disston’s Mike Rau, Vice President of Operations, led visitors on a tour of the plant.

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Car Prices Hit Record As Buyers Load In Options

September 6, 2013 2:26 pm | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer

Americans are paying record prices for new cars and trucks, and they have only themselves to blame. The average sale price of a vehicle in the U.S. hit $31,252 last month, up almost $1,000 over the same time last year. 

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Mulally Says No Plans To Leave Ford Early

September 6, 2013 2:24 pm | by The Associated Press

The chief executive of Ford Motor Co. says he has no plans to leave the company early after reports that he might be tipped to take a leading role at software maker Microsoft Corp. Ford said last year that Alan Mulally would stay with the company through at least 2014.

BP, Feds Offer Dueling Gulf Spill Estimates

September 6, 2013 2:22 pm | by Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press

With a high-stakes trial set to resume in less than a month, BP and the federal government on Thursday offered conflicting estimates of how much oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico after the blowout of the company's Macondo well triggered a deadly explosion.

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Study: New Gas Development Boom Unlikely In MI

September 6, 2013 2:19 pm | by John Flesher, AP Environmental Writer

Michigan may have large natural gas reserves deep underground, but it will likely be years before they would be developed on a large scale, giving policymakers time to deal with the environmental and public health concerns associated with the extraction method known as fracking, according to a study released Thursday.

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Green Mountain Coffee Closes Toronto Facility

September 6, 2013 2:18 pm | by The Associated Press

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. said Thursday that it will cease production at its facility in Toronto and cut 120 jobs as it consolidates its Canadian production in Montreal. The Waterbury, Vt., company said it will move all of its Canadian coffee and portion-pack production to its facility in Montreal. It plans to end its operations in Toronto by March 5.

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MAPI Forecast: Return To Moderate Growth

September 6, 2013 2:07 pm | by The Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI)

After a slow first half of 2013, expectations are for the U.S. economy to gradually return to moderate growth in the second half and through 2014, according to a new forecast. The MAPI Quarterly Economic Forecast predicts that inflation-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) will expand 1.6 percent in 2013 and 2.8 percent in 2014, the former down from 1.8 percent and the latter showing no change from MAPI’s May 2013 report.

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UAW Confirms Talks With VW About TN Plant

September 6, 2013 10:12 am | by The Associated Press

The United Auto Workers union confirmed Friday that it's in talks with Volkswagen about representing workers a factory in Chattanooga, Tenn. Currently no U.S. plants owned by foreign automakers have UAW representation. But the union has been trying for years to organize the plants, which mainly are in southern states.

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U.S. Unemployment Rate Falls To 7.3 Percent

September 6, 2013 10:09 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

U.S. employers added 169,000 jobs in August and much fewer in July than previously thought. Hiring has slowed from the start of the year and could complicate the Federal Reserve's decision later this month on whether to reduce its bond purchases.

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IL-Based Company Fined For Injury At WI Plant

September 6, 2013 10:07 am | by The Associated Press

Federal safety officials fined an Illinois-based company more than $185,000 on Thursday after a worker suffered severe burns at the same northern Wisconsin plant where five people have been killed since 2008. Packaging Corp. of America was cited for 30 alleged safety violations, including failing to provide proper safety equipment and improperly storing hazardous materials.

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IN Gov. Departs For Trade Mission To Japan

September 6, 2013 10:05 am | by The Associated Press

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence left Thursday on his first overseas trade mission as governor, taking along more than 40 political and business leaders to Japan. The trade delegation flew out of Indianapolis for a nine-day trip through Tokyo, Nagoya and Tochigi Prefecture, Indiana's Japanese sister state.

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Timken Says It Will Split Into 2 Companies

September 6, 2013 10:03 am | by The Associated Press

The Timken Co. said Thursday that it plans to split the company into two publicly traded companies. The Canton, Ohio, company's board approved a plan to separate its steel business from its bearings and power transmission business through a spinoff.

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MI Gov. Names Auto Adviser, Creates Auto Office

September 6, 2013 10:02 am | by The Associated Press

Gov. Rick Snyder has tapped a veteran auto industry executive to become the state's automotive adviser. The appointment of Nigel Francis and creation of the Automotive Industry Office were effective as of Sunday. Francis will make $170,000 a year in his new job.

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