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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Trade Rep Urges Japan Progress On Auto Access

August 19, 2013 10:26 am | by The Associated Press

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman on Monday urged Japan to open its market to American cars and insurance companies, which would pave the way for a broader regional free trade agreement. Froman told reporters that the ongoing talks with Japan dealing with such historical sticking points are tied to the success of the larger and parallel Pacific free trade negotiations.

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LA Lawmakers Support Deal For Fuel Plant

August 19, 2013 10:24 am | by Melinda Deslatte, Associated Press

Louisiana lawmakers reversed course and backed a contract with South African energy company Sasol to build a multibillion-dollar fuel plant in exchange for $257 million in state incentives over a decade. The Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget agreed to the contract a week after delaying a vote on the project because committee members said they had too little information about the potential costs to the state budget.

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Japan Steelmaker To Pay Wartime Compensation

August 19, 2013 10:21 am | by The Associated Press

Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. will comply if South Korea's Supreme Court upholds a ruling ordering the Japanese firm to pay 400 million won, or around 35 million yen, to four former South Korean workers as reparation for wartime forced labor, company sources said Sunday.

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Judge Won't Fast-Track Icahn Claim Against Dell

August 19, 2013 10:19 am | by Randall Chase, AP Business Writer

A state judge on Friday dealt a blow to activist investor Carl Icahn's effort to stop CEO and founder Michael Dell's $24.8 billion buyout offer for the struggling computer maker. He refused to fast-track proceedings on Icahn's claims that Dell Inc. directors have betrayed their duties to shareholders in trying to win support for Michael Dell's bid.

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Ford To Restate Hybrid Gas Mileage

August 15, 2013 3:07 pm | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer

Ford will reduce gas mileage estimates for its C-Max hybrid, following a government investigation into consumer complaints that the car's actual mileage was lower, a person familiar with the matter said. Ford will drop the combined city-highway mileage listed on the window sticker from 47 mpg to 43 mpg (20 kpl to 18.3 kpl), according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the change has not been formally announced.

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Fewest Americans Since 2007 Seek Jobless Benefits

August 15, 2013 3:05 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits dropped 15,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 320,000, the fewest since October 2007 — a sign of dwindling layoffs and steady if modest job growth. The Labor Department said Thursday that the less volatile four-week average fell 4,000 to 332,000, the fewest since November 2007 and the fifth straight decline.

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Court Reinstates Job Retaliation Lawsuit

August 15, 2013 3:02 pm | by Brett Barrouquere, Associated Press

A federal appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit by a Kentucky man who claims he was passed over for a job overseeing waste disposal from a nuclear plant because he is a whistleblower. The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday ordered a federal judge to determine whether executives with EnergySolutions Inc. learned of Gary Vander Boegh's whistleblowing before bypassing him for the landfill manager's job.

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Lenovo Mobile Sales Drive Profit Growth

August 15, 2013 3:00 pm | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer

Lenovo Group says it is evolving quickly into a supplier of wireless computing, driven by booming sales of smartphones and tablets as consumers shift away from desktop computers. Sales of wireless devices rose 105 percent in the three months ended June 30, driving a 23 percent rise in profit to $174 million, Lenovo announced Thursday. Total revenue rose 10 percent to $8.8 billion.

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Berkshire Buys Up GM Stock, Cuts Kraft

August 15, 2013 2:57 pm | by The Associated Press

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. has sharply boosted its stake in General Motors, while again cutting its stakes in packaged food companies Kraft and Mondelez. As of June 30, Berkshire had 40 million shares of the auto maker, according to a filing on Thursday with the Securities and Exchange Commission. That's up 60 percent from the stake reported as of March 31.

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Cleveland State Trains Manufacturing Job Seekers

August 15, 2013 2:18 pm | by Scientific Management Techniques

Cleveland State Community College has partnered with Cormetec Corporation to help recruit, assess, and train job seekers for open positions in advanced manufacturing operator positions. CSCC recently graduated their first class from their new OneSource Workforce Readiness Manufacturing Skills Training program. 

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U.S. Manufacturing Output Slipped In July

August 15, 2013 1:58 pm | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer

Output at U.S. factories declined slightly in July, reflecting a drop in auto production. The decline was expected to be temporary given the banner sales year automakers are having. Manufacturing output edged down 0.1 percent in July compared with June, the Federal Reserve reported Thursday. It was the first drop since declines in March and April.

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A Quadcopter Drone For The Masses?

August 15, 2013 1:56 pm | by Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer

Unmanned aircraft, also known as drones, are revolutionizing warfare. Now, some of that technology is coming home from the war, to amuse us and give us an aerial perspective on our surroundings. It's easy to see these agile, relatively stable aircraft being put to a number of uses, from aerial photography to package delivery — at least once the dangers can be managed and the legal issues worked through.

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IAG To Buy 62 Airbus Planes

August 15, 2013 1:54 pm | by The Associated Press

International Airlines Group has ordered 62 Airbus aircraft in the A320 family, with a list price of $5.4 billion, to replace aging planes and expand the fleet of its Vueling discount carrier. IAG, the parent of British Airways and Iberia, says it negotiated a "substantial discount" on the list price without providing further details.

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Brazilian State Of Sao Paulo To Sue Siemens

August 15, 2013 1:52 pm | by The Associated Press

The Brazilian state of Sao Paulo plans to file a lawsuit against German engineering giant Siemens AG to recover funds lost to an alleged price-fixing cartel involved in the construction and upkeep of the subway and train systems of the cities of Sao Paulo and Brasilia. The state government said in a statement posted on its website Tuesday night that Siemens told Brazil's antitrust agency, CADE, of the existence of the cartel in May.

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VA Chemical Plant To Close By End Of 2014

August 15, 2013 1:50 pm | by The Associated Press

A Petersburg chemical plant plans to close by the end of 2014, laying off 240 employees. Boehringer Ingelheim Chemicals Inc. said Thursday that it will begin to phase out operations starting in December 2013. The Petersburg facility that has been in operation since the late 1970s manufactures active ingredients for the pharmaceutical industry.

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Apple Breaks $500 Threshold

August 15, 2013 1:47 pm | by The Associated Press

Apple Inc.'s shares surged passed the $500 threshold — their highest level since January. The gains came a day after activist investor Carl Icahn said he thinks the iPhone maker should do more to revive its stock price. The outspoken billionaire said in Twitter posts Tuesday that he had acquired an unspecified stake in Apple and had spoken to its CEO about boosting share repurchase plans. 

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3 Injured In GA Chemical Plant Blast

August 15, 2013 12:28 pm | by The Associated Press

 Authorities in south Georgia say at least three people have been injured in a chemical explosion that rocked an industrial complex. Valdosta fire officials say more than 40 firefighters responded to the blaze at the Gil Harbin Industrial Park Wednesday afternoon with help from Lowndes County sheriff's officials, Moody Air Force Base, the Georgia State Patrol and the FBI.

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IN Factory Hopeful In Military Contract Bid

August 15, 2013 12:26 pm | by The Associated Press

Officials at northern Indiana's AM General factory are hopeful about its chances for being picked to build potentially thousands of new military tactical vehicles. The company said it delivered 22 vehicles eight days early for testing in the latest round of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program for the Army and Marine Corps.

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Cisco Posts 4Q Earnings, But Says It Will Cut Jobs

August 15, 2013 12:24 pm | by Barbara Ortutay, The Associated Press

Cisco's earnings and revenue grew in the latest quarter as demand for its computer networking equipment increased. But CEO John Chambers called the global economy "challenging and inconsistent" and the company said it is cutting about 4,000 jobs, or about 5 percent of its work force.

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Leggett & Platt To Expand Manufacturing Facility

August 15, 2013 12:22 pm | by The Associated Press

Manufacturing company Leggett & Platt is planning a $5 million expansion for its facility in southwestern Missouri. Gov. Jay Nixon announced Wednesday that Leggett & Platt would be adding 28,000 square feet and an expected 12 jobs to its Flex-O-Lators facility in Carthage. The plant makes automotive seating components.

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