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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Nissan Building Park For Suppliers At Miss. Plant

July 30, 2013 2:52 pm | by Emily Wagster Pettus, Associated Press

Gov. Phil Bryant and Nissan officials spoke Tuesday during a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday near Canton. The manufacturing plant opened in 2003 and is about 15 miles north of Jackson, facing Interstate 55. The new supplier park will not be visible from the interstate.

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U.S. Consumer Confidence Dips From 5-Year High

July 30, 2013 2:44 pm | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer

Americans' confidence in the economy fell only slightly in July but stayed close to a 5 ½-year high. The report shows consumers remain upbeat about the outlook for job growth later this year. Consumers' confidence in the economy is watched closely because their spending accounts for about 70 percent of U.S. economic activity. It surged in June, coinciding with a stronger job market.

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Nissan Recalls Versa Note Hatchbacks

July 30, 2013 2:42 pm | by Associated Press

The company says the recall affects cars from the 2014 model year that were built in Mexico before July 5 and distributed mainly in North America. Nissan says bolts holding the rear seat back latches may not be strong enough. This could increase the injury risk for back-seat passengers in a crash.

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EPA Chief: Climate Controls Will Help Economy

July 30, 2013 2:39 pm | by Dina Cappiello, Associated Press

In her first speech as the head of EPA, Gina McCarthy told an audience gathered at Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Mass., that curbing climate-altering pollution will spark business innovation, grow jobs and strengthen the economy. The message was classic Obama, who has long said that the environment and the economy aren't in conflict and has sold ambitious plans to reduce greenhouse gases as a means to jumpstart a clean energy economy.

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Unemployment Rates Rise In 90 Pct. Of U.S. Cities

July 30, 2013 2:37 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

Unemployment rates rose in nearly all large U.S. cities in June as college graduates and many of those still in school began searching for jobs. The Labor Department said Tuesday that unemployment rates rose in 347 large metro areas in June compared with the previous month. They fell in 12 and were unchanged in 13. In May, rates fell in 109 cities and rose in 243.

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Manufacturing Drop Shows Weakness In Japan Economy

July 30, 2013 2:35 pm | by Associated Press

Japan's industrial output fell in June for the first time in five months, the government said Tuesday as it released data highlighting the fragility of the recovery in the world's No. 3 economy. Manufacturing slipped 3.3 percent from the month before in June and was 4.8 percent lower than a year before, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said.

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Volkswagon Gags Academics From Revealing Car Flaws

July 30, 2013 10:43 am | by Associated Press

A British university says it is delaying the publication of an academic paper on electronic vulnerabilities in high-end Volkswagen cars following legal action from the German automaker. The academics had hoped to publish the paper at the USENIX Security Conference in Washington next month.

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Massive Explosions Rock Fla. Gas Plant

July 30, 2013 10:39 am | by Mike Schneider and Tamara Lush, Associated Press

A series of explosions rocked a central Florida propane gas plant and sent "boom after boom after boom" through the neighborhood around it. Eight people were injured, with at least three in critical condition. Tavares Fire Chief Richard Keith said possible causes of the explosion may be either equipment malfunction or possibly human error. Sabotage was not suspected.

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Valeant To Cut Jobs, Move Bausch + Lomb HQ

July 30, 2013 10:34 am | by Associated Press

In a letter to its own and Bausch + Lomb workers, Valeant said that after the deal closes, it will eliminate between 10 percent and 15 percent of positions company wide. That works out to between 1,850 and 2,775 people and is expected to include both Valeant and Bausch + Lomb workers.

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China Explosion Fuels Environmental Concerns

July 30, 2013 10:27 am | by Louise Watt, Associated Press

An explosion Tuesday at a Chinese plant that produces the toxic chemical paraxylene has added fuel to a growing movement opposing such plants, on the same day that a state-run newspaper prominently urged the public to accept the industry as safe.

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Obama Proposes 'Grand Bargain' For Jobs

July 30, 2013 10:16 am | by Nedra Pickler, Associated Press

President Barack Obama is extending a new proposal to Republicans that he hopes will break the political gridlock on budget negotiations, offering to cut corporate tax rates in exchange for job investments. White House officials say just because they're at an impasse with congressional Republicans over a grand bargain on reducing the deficit doesn't mean they shouldn't look for other areas of agreement.

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Toyota Financial Services To Appoint New President, CEO

July 29, 2013 3:16 pm | by Toyota

Toyota Financial Services (TFS) announced that George Borst, the company’s U.S. leader of 16 years will be retiring effective September 30, 2013, after which he will assume the role of Executive Advisor until the end of calendar year 2014. Appointed to replace Borst is Mike Groff, currently Senior Vice President, Sales, Marketing & Product Development at TFS.

BMW Pulls Wraps Off i3 Electric Car

July 29, 2013 2:32 pm | by The Associated Press

BMW AG is showing off the production model of its new i3 electric compact that uses carbon-fiber materials to keep the weight down and improve driving performance. CEO Norbert Reithofer stressed at a New York unveiling that the car was designed as an electric from the ground up. The i3 is "born electric," he said.

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Signs Of Declining Economic Security

July 29, 2013 2:29 pm | by Hope Yen, Associated Press

Four out of five U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream. Survey data exclusive to The Associated Press points to an increasingly globalized U.S. economy, the widening gap between rich and poor, and the loss of good-paying manufacturing jobs as reasons for the trend.

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Halliburton Has Incentive To Cut Deal In Oil Spill

July 29, 2013 2:27 pm | by Michael Kunzelman, Associated Press

Halliburton has resolved a U.S. Justice Department criminal probe of its role in the 2010 Gulf oil spill by agreeing to pay a $200,000 fine and admitting it destroyed evidence, but the company still has a powerful incentive to cut another deal with businesses and residents.

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IL, IA Wait For Fertilizer Plant Decision

July 29, 2013 2:24 pm | by David Mercer, Associated Press

The company that wants to build a $1.2 billion fertilizer plant in either northern Iowa or eastern Illinois has offers of incentives from both states and plans to choose a site in 30 to 60 days. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed economic legislation Thursday that includes incentives to try to convince Cronus Chemical LLC to build in the state.

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Whistleblower: Olympus Ignores Japan Court Order

July 29, 2013 2:22 pm | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer

More than a year after Japan's Supreme Court ordered camera and medical-equipment maker Olympus to stop punishing a whistleblower and reinstate him to his regular job, Masaharu Hamada is still fighting his courtroom battle. On Monday, he got company.

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Toyota To Add 200 Jobs At IN Factory In 2014

July 29, 2013 2:20 pm | by The Associated Press

Toyota says it will boost production of the Highlander SUV at its southwestern Indiana plant and add 200 jobs there next year. The Evansville Courier & Press reports Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana Inc. announced Friday that it's increasing Highlander production by 15,000 units at its Princeton plant as part of a $30 million investment.

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Lee Spring Supports Formula Student Team

July 29, 2013 10:59 am | by Lee Spring

Engineering students taking part in the Formula Student racing car project at the University of Liverpool have benefited from a donation of several torsion springs from Lee Spring UK. Formula Student is an international competition that sees student led teams around the world design, build, and race single seat racing cars.

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Group Accuses Apple Supplier Of Labor Abuses

July 29, 2013 10:07 am

A labor rights group Monday accused a Chinese company that makes iPhones for Apple Inc. of abuses including withholding employees' pay and excessive working hours. China Labor Watch said it found violations of the law and of Apple's pledges about working conditions at factories operated by Pegatron Corp., a Taiwanese company.

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