French car maker Renault managed to shore up its cash position in 2012 even though it saw its profits crumble during the year in spite of a big one-off gain from the sale of its shares in Swedish truck maker AB Volvo. Renault said Thursday its net profit fell 15 percent to €1.77 billion ($2.39 billion) in 2012.
Japan's economy shrank in the last three months of 2012, its third straight quarter of contraction, giving the government ammunition to defend its "weak yen" strategy as necessary to getting growth back on track. The 0.4 percent contraction in annualized terms in October-December was worse than expected.
Brazil's patent authority has bitten Apple. The agency says the iPhone name in Brazil belongs to a local company called Gradiente SA, not to the global computer giant. A patent office spokesman says the decision published Wednesday doesn't forbid Apple from using the name in Brazil. It only makes it clear the rights belong to the Brazilian company.
The European Union and the United States announced Wednesday that they have agreed to pursue talks aimed at achieving an overarching trans-Atlantic free trade deal. The 27-country EU said such an agreement, first announced in Tuesday's State of the Union address by President Barack Obama, would be the biggest bilateral trade deal ever negotiated.
China on Tuesday denounced U.S. sanctions against a leading state arms maker and other companies over alleged illicit dealings with North Korea, Syria and Iran. The U.S. State Department on Monday said that Poly Technologies Inc. is among companies barred from dealing with the U.S. government or purchasing U.S. military hardware for two years.
I am not sure how to define it, but what the Italians seem to be stumbling over is a lack of global reach. Outside market understanding entails extensive effort and often requires a presence in that market, in order to identify that market’s unique needs. This does not come cheap.
Hewlett-Packard Co., the world's largest personal computer maker, is vowing to crack down on its Chinese suppliers in an effort to reduce the use of low-paid student interns and other temporary workers. The guidelines unveiled Friday are the latest attempt by a major U.S. technology company to weed out labor abuses at Chinese factories that manufacture the gadgets for an Internet-connected world.
Bombardier Aerospace is making room for production of the CSeries airliner by beginning to transfer component work on its regional jets to a temporary plant in Morocco. The Montreal-based based division of transportation giant Bombardier said that 18 aircraft assemblers in Morocco who graduated from the local aerospace institute started this week to make simple structures for its CRJ regional jets.
German industrial orders increased in December, suggesting business is beginning to pick up in Europe's largest economy. The Economy Ministry said Wednesday orders were up 0.8 percent over November, according to seasonally adjusted figures. That comes after a 1.8 percent decline in November.
Charges related to its ailing European business and a drop in the value of its assets saw ArcelorMittal SA, the world's largest steel maker, post a near $4 billion loss for the fourth quarter. The company, based in Luxembourg, said Wednesday its net loss widened to $3.99 billion (€2.94 billion) from $1 billion in the same period a year ago. Sales fell 14 percent to $19.3 billion, as both prices and volumes declined year on year.
Honda Motor Co. will build a new assembly plant in Thailand and expand the current plant to deal with high demand, the president of Asian Honda Co. said Wednesday. Hiroshi Kobayashi said Honda will invest 17.15 billion Baht ($570 million) to build its second assembly plant in Prachin Buri Province in eastern Thailand to meet higher demand in both domestic and international markets, particularly for smaller cars.
If we were to change our education system, as well as put a higher value to those who serve the economy outside of cubicles and office space, we would see corporations bring their manufacturing back to the United States. They would create the jobs that so many are searching for. The price for manufacturing will drop domestically, which will in turn bring manufacturing jobs back home.
Japan's industrial production picked up pace in December from the month before, in a sign the world's third-largest economy may be stabilizing thanks to stronger global demand and government spending. Increased output of large passenger cars and vehicle components and machinery for making semiconductors were the main factors helping to drive the improvement in manufacturing, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said.
German luxury automaker Daimler AG said Friday it is buying a stake in the passenger car unit of its main Chinese partner to expand its presence in the world's biggest auto market. Daimler said it will pay 640 million euros ($875 million) for 12 percent of BAIC Motor, a unit of Beijing Automotive Industries Corp., with which it manufactures Mercedes Benz cars.
Workers are cranking out precision machine parts at the Komo Manufacturing plant in Lakewood, New Jersey now that the work has returned from China. Skilled manufacturing jobs are returning to the United States, as labor costs rise abroad and quality concerns permeate the market.
Mention it quietly, but there were rare hopeful signs for Europe's struggling economy on Friday. Three pieces of economic news for the 17 European Union countries that use the euro were all slightly better than hoped — in sharp contrast to some of the grim days the eurozone has witnessed over the last three years of its crisis over too much debt.
The stock market is now back at pre-recession levels at a five-year high and unemployment is at a five-year low. CNBC's Jim Cramer talks about whether we're back on solid footing or looking at a short-lived bubble in this video from NBC's Today show.
Mazda Motor Corp. said Wednesday it will build a plant to manufacture automatic transmissions in the Thai province of Chonburi, with production starting in the first half of fiscal 2015. The plant, to be built with 26 billion yen in investment, will turn out 400,000 transmissions a year for the automaker's vehicles employing its fuel-efficient technology dubbed Skyactiv, Mazda said.
Challenges are ever increasing with global markets. Customers are expecting quicker response times on the solutions they seek. Companies are impacted by forces from all directions, but it all comes down to execution: if you don’t execute you will not win the market or launch the product. Execution is stopped by distractions from your core business and your business core processes; none of these distractions are new.
China says it will impose anti-dumping duties on two chemicals from the United States and European Union for five years. The Ministry of Commerce said it ruled that U.S. and EU companies have been selling the chemicals at unfairly low prices, hurting China's domestic industry.
At the World Economic Forum, Cisco CEO John Chambers says it is easier to do business in Canada and Russia than in the U.S. He says that other countries "get" how important it is to attract business, favorable tax policy, and working together with businesses to achieve goals. He also says that, right now, the U.S. is not country that attracts business.
China's manufacturing crept higher in January to the fastest pace in two years, a survey showed Thursday, in another sign the world's second-biggest economy is coming out of a downturn. A preliminary version of HSBC's monthly purchasing managers' index rose for the fifth month in a row to 51.9 in January from 51.5 in December. Readings above 50 on the 100-point scale indicate an expansion.
General Motors Co. is pressing employees in Germany to agree on a turnaround plan for its struggling European unit, warning if there is no deal it would end car production at one of its German plants two years earlier than planned. Opel announced last month it plans to stop producing cars at the plant in Bochum at the end of 2016 when it stops making its current Zafira model.
It’s been my long-held belief that no matter what we automate in manufacturing, or how flexible and effective a supply chain we develop, it’s how we manage the people in the business that will make the difference between good and world class. When it comes to managing the workforce, very few industries are under more pressure than manufacturing.
A new and legally binding international treaty to reduce harmful emissions of mercury was adopted Saturday by more than 140 nations, capping four years of difficult negotiations but stopping short of some of the tougher measures that proponents had envisioned.