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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Odds Dim For Fisker Production In Former Del. GM Plant

January 3, 2014 10:05 am | by Randall Chase, AP Business Writer

Hybrid Technology LLC, owned by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, is seeking to buy Fisker's remaining assets in bankruptcy after paying $25 million for DOE's outstanding loan, resulting in a loss to U.S. taxpayers of $139 million, but would then sell the former General Motors plant meant for production.

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Auto Sales Finish 2013 8 Pct. Up, Strongest Since 2007

January 3, 2014 10:02 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer

Most analysts are predicting that Americans bought around 1.4 million new cars and trucks last month, the fourth-best month of the year. That means the industry will finish 2013 with sales of about 15.6 million cars and trucks, roughly 8 percent better than the 14.5 million vehicles sold in 2012.

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Wal-Mart Eyes Legal Action Over Fox In Donkey Meat

January 3, 2014 9:57 am | by The Associated Press

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. says it's considering taking legal action against "responsible parties" after DNA testing showed traces of fox meat in the donkey meat it sold in China.                      

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Gun Firm Makes Good On Leaving Colo. Over Gun Laws

January 3, 2014 9:53 am | by Bob Moen, Associated Press

Erie, Colo.-based Magpul Industries announced Thursday that it was moving its production, distribution and shipping operations to Cheyenne and its headquarters to Texas, making good on a vow it made to leave Colorado during last year's heated gun control debate.

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Chrysler Sales Up 6 Pct. As 2013 Finishes Strong

January 3, 2014 9:49 am | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer

Chrysler finished 2013 with a 9 percent sales increase, posting its best annual numbers in six years as the auto industry's recovery hit full stride. The company said Friday that it sold just over 1.8 million cars and trucks last year, up from 1.65 million a year earlier.

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Some Workers Set To Reach $100K Pay In Boeing Deal

January 3, 2014 9:42 am | by Mike Baker, Associated Press

A group of top-level union workers at Boeing already earn more than $90,000 in base pay annually, not counting shift differentials, overtime or incentive payments, according to union wage tables. While the contract offer going to a vote Friday would slow the growth of machinists' wages starting in 2016, workers would still get regular cost-of-living adjustments, plus an extra 1 percent pay increase every other year.

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Molto Properties Selects Cushman & Wakefield to Manage 11 Industrial Assets

January 2, 2014 1:52 pm | by Cushman & Wakefield National Industrial

Molto Properties, LLC has appointed Cushman & Wakefield’s industrial property management group to maintain its 3.9 million-square-foot, Class A industrial portfolio. The assignment includes 10 assets in the Chicago metropolitan market and one building in San Bernardino County, Calif.

A Look At What 2014 May Hold For Small Businesses

January 2, 2014 1:23 pm | by Joyce M. Rosenberg, AP Business Writer

What stresses small business owners the most? Our conversations with them and the research we come across suggest it's a lack of clarity. Well, there's no small business crystal ball — at least one we are aware of — but if one existed, here's a look at what it might reveal for 2014:

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Global Stocks Drop On Weaker Chinese Market

January 2, 2014 1:18 pm | by The Associated Press

Global markets began the New Year on a subdued note, falling Thursday after a Chinese survey suggested the world's second-largest economy might be slowing.  Major indexes closed out 2013 at or near record highs, but investors seemed reluctant to chase more gains in the new year.

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HP Confirms Higher Layoffs Than Expected

January 2, 2014 1:06 pm | by The Associated Press

Personal computer giant Hewlett-Packard Co. has confirmed that it expects layoffs at the upper end of a range that it outlined earlier this year, with 5,000 more workers than originally planned expected to lose jobs by October 2014.      

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Ill. Chemical Plant Unit Down Pending Fire Probe

January 2, 2014 1:01 pm | by The Associated Press

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan says the Cook County judge on Tuesday granted a preliminary injunction against Blue Island Phenol in suburban Alsip. It requires the company to investigate the cause of the Dec. 13 explosion and fire that injured two workers and identify corrective measures.

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Ala. International Paper Closure Leaves Regional Scars

January 2, 2014 12:56 pm | by Errol Castens, Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal

Memphis-based International Paper Co.'s plan to shut its Courtland, Ala., paper mill next year may impact landowners and businesses across Northeast Mississippi.  Logging jobs may be lost or moved, and timber owners in some counties may find it difficult to market pulpwood at all.

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ISM: 55 Months Of Consecutive Manufacturing Growth

January 2, 2014 12:52 pm | by Institute for Supply Management

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in December for the seventh consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 55th consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.

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Bombardier Wins Order For $2.2B In Business Jets

January 2, 2014 10:07 am | by The Associated Press

Bombardier didn't disclose the precise value of the deal — customers such as airlines routinely get discounts from plane manufacturers — and didn't identify the buyer. The Canadian plane maker said the order covered 28 Global jets and 10 Challenger 605 aircraft.

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Retirement Unlikely For Some Blue-Collar Americans

January 2, 2014 9:59 am | by Emily Wagster Pettus, Associated Press

Many have jobs that provide paltry pensions or none at all, as many companies have been moving toward less generous retirement packages in the past decade. Many boomers expect to work the rest of their lives because they have little cash put away for their old age and they worry Social Security won't cover their bills.

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Fiat To Pay UAW $3.65B For Remaining Chrysler Shares

January 2, 2014 9:53 am | by The Associated Press

Fiat already owns 58.5 percent of Chrysler's shares, with the remaining 41.5 percent held by a United Auto Workers union trust fund that pays health care bills for retirees. Under the deal, Fiat will make an initial payment of $1.9 billion to the fund, plus an additional $1.75 billion upon closing the deal.

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China Manufacturing Indicator Weakens

January 2, 2014 9:46 am | by The Associated Press

An industry group, the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing, said Wednesday its purchasing managers index for December declined to 51 from the previous month's 51.4. The measure is a 100-point scale on which numbers above 50 indicate increasing activity. 

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Ford To Unveil Solar Hybrid Concept Car At CES

January 2, 2014 9:42 am | by The Associated Press

The C-MAX Solar Energi Concept car uses a gasoline engine combined with a gizmo that acts like a magnifying glass to concentrate the sun's rays on the vehicle's roof-mounted solar panels. The automaker says the vehicle's estimated combined city-highway mileage is 100 miles (160 kilometers) per gallon.

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Company Shows Interest In Near-Bankrupt Fisker Assets

January 2, 2014 9:38 am | by The Associated Press

A company has filed a proposal to buy the assets of Fisker Automotive, days before a hearing planned in the electric vehicle maker's bankruptcy. The proposed agreement between Fisker and Wanxiang America Corp. was filed Monday in bankruptcy court. A hearing on a possible sale of Fisker's assets is scheduled for Friday in Wilmington.

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The World Braces For Impending Retirement Crisis

December 30, 2013 10:04 am | by David McHugh, Elaine Kurtenbach and Paul Wiseman, AP Business Writers

Spawned years before the Great Recession and the 2008 financial meltdown, the crisis was significantly worsened by those twin traumas. It will play out for decades, and its consequences will be far-reaching. Many people will be forced to work well past the traditional retirement age of 65. Living standards will fall and poverty rates will rise for the elderly in wealthy countries.

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