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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Chinese Automakers Struggle Against Global Rivals

April 18, 2013 2:10 pm | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

These should be good times for Chinese automakers as they prepare to show off their latest models at the Shanghai auto show. Their home market is the world's biggest and growing. But independent automakers such as Chery and Geely are being squeezed by bigger, richer global rivals including General Motors and Nissan that have moved into turf the Chinese makers considered their own: low-priced models for local tastes.

Purell's Long Path To Success

April 17, 2013 4:42 pm | by CBS News | Videos | Comments

Now the top pick among careful parents and germaphobes alike, Purell's market success wasn't always so obvious. After a decade of rising sales and steady marketing, the anti-bacterial hand sanitizer has become wildly successful, surpassing analyst predictions on its way to the top.

Apple Stock Falls On Supplier News

April 17, 2013 1:56 pm | by Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Shares of Apple Inc. fell below $400 for the first time in a year and half on Wednesday, after a supplier hinted at a slowdown in iPhone and iPad production. The stock was down $21.89, or 5.1 percent, at $404.35 in early afternoon trading. Earlier in the day, it hit $398.11, the lowest level since Dec. 2011.

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Daimler Selling Rest Of EADS Stake

April 17, 2013 10:23 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Automaker Daimler AG says it is selling its remaining 7.5 percent stake in EADS, the parent company of aircraft manufacturer Airbus. Daimler helped found EADS but now is cashing out to focus on its core business of making cars. It sold a 7.5 percent stake last year. The Daimler stake of 61.1 million shares would be worth about 2.3 billion euros at Tuesday's price of 37.20 euros a share.

Toyota's Hybrid Vehicle Sales Pass 5 Million

April 17, 2013 10:11 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Toyota's global sales of gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles have surpassed 5 million in a milestone for a technology that was initially greeted with skepticism. The Japanese automaker, which said Wednesday it had sold 5.125 million hybrid vehicles as of the end of March, started selling the Prius, the world's first mass produced hybrid passenger car, in 1997.

GM To Roll Out New Line Of Smaller Pickups

April 16, 2013 2:20 pm | by Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

General Motors plans to roll out a line of completely revamped midsize pickup trucks, with gas mileage and features designed to take sales from Toyota's market-leading Tacoma. The trucks will replace the aging Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon. Mark Reuss, GM's North American president, said Tuesday that the trucks will be able to do 95 percent of the work that a big truck can do.

Cars, Utilities Lift U.S. Industrial Output

April 16, 2013 2:18 pm | by Paul Wiseman, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

U.S. industrial output rose in March as cold weather kept utilities busy generating heat and a surge in auto production helped offset broader weakness in manufacturing. Production at the nation's factories, mines and utilities rose 0.4 percent in March from February, the Federal Reserve said.

U.S. Industrial Manufacturers Optimistic

April 16, 2013 1:10 pm | by PwC | News | Comments

U.S. industrial manufacturers remain positive regarding the outlook for the U.S. economy in the year ahead, while sentiment pertaining to the world economy remains guarded, according to the Q1 2013 Manufacturing Barometer, released by PwC US.

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GM 1Q Global Sales Rise To Beat VW

April 16, 2013 10:17 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

General Motors edged out fast-growing Volkswagen in first-quarter sales as both companies try to close the gap with Toyota for the global world sales crown. Toyota, which is scheduled to release first-quarter numbers next week, dethroned GM to retake the top spot in 2012, a year in which VW posted record sales and came within 190,000 vehicles of beating GM.

U.S. Declines To Label China Currency Manipulator

April 15, 2013 1:40 pm | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The Obama administration declined to label China a currency manipulator, although it said that China's currency remains significantly undervalued. The decision came in a twice-a-year Treasury report on whether any nations are manipulating their currencies to gain trade advantages.

Pratt & Whitney Expects More Orders

April 12, 2013 3:30 pm | by Kelli Kennedy, Associated Press | News | Comments

Pratt & Whitney's military program likely will take a dip as the company transitions from the legacy military engines it's known for making, but engine orders will pick up in a few years with an increase in production of joint strike fighter engines, the company's president said Thursday.

RIM Seeks Probe Into BlackBerry Returns Report

April 12, 2013 3:30 pm | by Rob Gillies, Associated Press | News | Comments

The maker of the BlackBerry said Friday that it wants U.S. and Canadian regulators to investigate a "false and misleading" report by a financial analyst that claims the company's new smartphone is being returned in unusually high numbers.

Nissan To Increase Pay At TN, MS Plants

April 12, 2013 10:02 am | by Jeff Amy, Associated Press | News | Comments

Nissan Motor Co. will raise pay for its employees in Mississippi and Tennessee. The company has told its employees it will increase their wages starting in October at its Canton, Miss., and Smyrna, Tenn., assembly plants, as well as its Decherd, Tenn., engine plant.

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German Leader Welcomes GM Investment

April 12, 2013 10:01 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has welcomed General Motors' decision to invest another 4 billion euros ($5.3 billion) in European subsidiary Opel by 2016 as part of an attempt to turn the money-losing division around. Merkel met with GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson and other company officials Thursday in Berlin.

MAPI: Outlook Index Shows Slight Advance

April 12, 2013 9:52 am | by Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation | News | Comments

 The results of the quarterly Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI) Survey on the Business Outlook (EO-123) indicate improvement, albeit marginal, from the previous report, and imply that the manufacturing sector is holding its own in uncertain economic times. 

The Two Faces Of U.S. Manufacturing

April 12, 2013 8:05 am | by AJ Sweatt | Blogs | Comments

The fact is that our trade and economic policies – or lack thereof – are the primary cause of stagnant manufacturing growth in this country. We in and of manufacturing find ourselves in an environment of two camps, vying on many fronts for supremacy & influence. And, these days, it sure seems like the inmates are running the asylum.

Bombardier's Dogfight With Airbus & Boeing

April 11, 2013 12:33 pm | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

Bombardier's CEO, Pierre Beaudoin, talks about the company's expansion in the mid-size jet sector and what that means in terms of competition with Airbus and Boeing. Bombardier's C-series is the company's entry into mainline jets. Fortune's Adam Lashinsky reports.

Discouraging Jobs Report Raises Fear Of Slowing Recovery

April 9, 2013 4:33 pm | by PBSNewsHour | Videos | Comments

A disappointing jobs report has sparked fears of a slowing recovery. Although the unemployment rate dipped slightly, that reduction was attributed to people retiring or who had stopped looking for work. PBS' Judy Woodruff reports on why the job market in March took a sharp decline from the past two months.

Alcoa's 1Q Profit Rises, Beats Expectations

April 9, 2013 2:11 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Alcoa Inc. kicked off earnings season Monday by reporting a larger first-quarter profit than analysts expected, helped by strong demand for aluminum used to make airplanes and automobiles. The company still sees demand for aluminum growing 7 percent in 2013, with gains cutting across many industries.

Survey: Small Business Optimism Falls In March

April 9, 2013 2:07 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Optimism among small business owners took a dive last month as expectations for their companies' sales and the economy fell, according to a survey released Tuesday. The National Federation of Independent Business said its index of small business optimism, compiled from a survey of its members, fell 1.3 points to 89.5 after three months of modest gains.

BMW Sets Monthly Sales Record

April 9, 2013 2:06 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

German luxury automaker BMW AG says it had its best month ever in March, increasing global sales by 3 percent to 191,269 vehicles. For the first three months of the year, sales rose by 5.3 percent compared with a year earlier, to 448,200 units — even though sales slipped in the company's home market, Germany.

Ford: Focus Is Best-Selling Car In The World

April 9, 2013 10:17 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Ford Motor Co. says its Focus small car was the best-selling vehicle nameplate in the world last year, with just over 1 million sold. More than a quarter of all Focuses were sold in China, its largest market. The U.S. was the car's second-largest market.

Fiat-Chrysler Bearish On Europe

April 9, 2013 10:13 am | by Colleen Barry, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Italian carmaker Fiat, which controls Chrysler, will revise its earnings targets later this month as the European market is expected to decline for a sixth straight year, CEO Sergio Marchionne told shareholders Tuesday. European economies are suffering as governments cut spending and raise taxes to lower debt.

U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders Up

April 9, 2013 8:02 am | by AMT | News | Comments

February U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $385.89 million according to AMT - The Association For Manufacturing Technology. This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTO program, was up 5.7 percent from January but down 10.6 percent when compared with the total of $431.63 million reported for February 2012.

ISM: Manufacturing Dips, Remains In Positive Territory

April 9, 2013 8:00 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, MBT | Articles | Comments

Although U.S. manufacturing declined in March, it continues a positive push into 2013. “The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Index was 51.3 in March, down from 54.2 in February but is still above 50, the dividing point between growth and decline,” said Daniel J. Meckstroth, Chief Economist for the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI).

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