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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

The Right Way To Drive A Lamborghini

July 11, 2013 8:01 am | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

If you've ever tried to buy a high-end supercar, just getting a test drive can involve a deposit of $15,000. But now, for a much smaller price, drivers can learn to drive Lamborghinis before taking them for a test spin. At the Lamborghini Esperienza, you learn to drift, auto cross, and drive Lamborghinis on a race track.

First Apple Computer Sells At Auction For $387,750

July 10, 2013 2:19 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

An original Apple computer from 1976 has sold at auction for nearly $388,000. Known as the Apple 1, it was one of the first Apple computers ever built. It sold on Monday for $387,750 at a Christie's online-only auction. The auction house did not disclose the name of the buyer. The seller was a retired school psychologist from Sacramento, Calif.

Investors Buying Bankrupt Israel Electric Car Firm

July 10, 2013 2:14 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A group of investors has taken over the remains of Israel's bankrupt electric car venture, pledging to give the project another boost. The electric car company Better Place filed for liquidation in May, less than six years after unveiling a plan promising to revolutionize the auto industry by reducing the world's oil dependency.

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CT Seeks To Boost Electric Vehicle Stations

July 10, 2013 2:12 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Connecticut is seeking to more than double the number of electric vehicle charging stations by the end of the year, the state's top environmental and transportation officials said Tuesday. The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and Department of Transportation are making $200,000 available to install charging stations.

China Trade Falls In New Sign Its Economy Is Fading

July 10, 2013 10:16 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

China's trade declined abruptly in June in a sign growth in the world's second-largest economy might be cooling even more sharply than expected. Exports fell by 3.1 percent compared with a year earlier and imports contracted by 0.7 percent, customs data showed Wednesday. Both were below forecasts of growth in the low single digits.

BlackBerry Chief Seeks Patience With Turnaround

July 10, 2013 10:09 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Research In Motion CEO Thorsten Heins pleaded for patience Tuesday as the company faces questions about its growth and survival. BlackBerry shares were hammered last month after the company's financial results fell short of expectations. Heins told shareholders that BlackBerry is in the second stage of its turnaround. Stage three, he said, includes profitability.

GM: New Corvette To Get 29 MPG On Highway

July 9, 2013 1:49 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

General Motors says the new Chevrolet Corvette sports car will get 29 miles per gallon of gas in highway driving. The 2014 Corvette Stingray has a 455 horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8 engine that can take the car from zero to 60 mph in under four seconds. GM says the car can get up to 30 mpg in "Eco" mode.

The World's Top Drone Exporter

July 9, 2013 11:33 am | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

It might look like a model airplane, but don't let the size fool you. The Heron 1 is the latest in Israeli drone technology and the growth engine of Israel's defense industry. Between 2001 and 2011, 41 percent of drones came from Israel. President and CEO of Israel Aerospace Industries, Joseph Weiss, explains why this technology is a necessity.

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Manufacturing Technology Orders Up

July 9, 2013 11:01 am | by AMT | News | Comments

May U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $430.06 million according to AMT - The Association For Manufacturing Technology. This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTO program, was up 13.6 percent from April but down 7.6 percent when compared with the total of $465.38 million reported for May 2012. With a year-to-date total of $2,085.14 million, 2013 is down 6.9 percent compared with 2012.

Late To The Chinese Market, Ford Aims To Catch Up

July 9, 2013 10:09 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

Last year, Chinese consumers bought 19 million cars and trucks — 5 million more than consumers in the U.S. Ford's share of those sales was just 3 percent. Years of corporate chaos and financial trouble slowed Ford's entry into China as its rivals gained a foothold. Together, General Motors and Volkswagen control a third of China's market.

Alcoa Posts $119M Loss On Restructuring Costs

July 9, 2013 9:58 am | by David Koenig, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Strong demand for lightweight aluminum in autos and airplanes is helping Alcoa Inc. cope with lingering weak metal prices. The company said its second-quarter loss was wider than a year ago, but excluding costs for closing smelters and other restructuring and legal expenses, the results slightly beat Wall Street expectations.

Temporary Jobs Are Becoming A Permanent U.S. Fixture

July 8, 2013 10:15 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

Hiring is exploding in the one corner of the U.S. economy where few want to be hired: Temporary work. From Wal-Mart to General Motors to PepsiCo, companies are increasingly turning to temps and to a much larger universe of freelancers, contract workers and consultants. Combined, these workers number nearly 17 million people who have only tenuous ties to the companies that pay them — about 12 percent of everyone with a job.

ISM: Manufacturing Back On Track

July 8, 2013 8:02 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Articles | Comments

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector returned to a slow, steady expansion in June, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest ISM Report On Business. The PMI number indicated expansion in manufacturing for the fifth time in six months, reversing May’s contracting PMI rate of 49 percentage points. Although U.S. manufacturing is growing at a slow, steady rate, it’s still in line to meet yearly expectations.

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U.S. Unemployment Benefit Applications Fall To 343K

July 3, 2013 10:07 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits fell 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 343,000 last week, a sign that employers are adding jobs at modest pace. The less volatile four-week average dipped 750 to 345,500, the Labor Department said Wednesday.

U.S. Trade Deficit Widens To $45B In May

July 3, 2013 10:05 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

The U.S. trade deficit increased in May to the highest level in six months as a weak global economy depressed U.S. export sales while imports of autos and other nonpetroleum products hit an all-time high. The trade deficit rose to $45 billion in May, up 12.1 percent from April's $40.1 billion imbalance, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. It was the largest trade gap since November.

Auto Sales Maintain Momentum, Led By Pickups

July 2, 2013 2:12 pm | by Dee-Ann Durbin, Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers | News | Comments

U.S. buyers snapped up new cars and trucks in June at a pace not seen since before the recession. Continuing demand for big pickups helped boost sales for Detroit's automakers. Ford said Tuesday that its sales rose 14 percent, while Chrysler's gained 8 percent and General Motors' rose 6.5 percent.

Ethiopian Air Sees Record Profit Despite 787 Snafu

July 2, 2013 2:05 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The chief executive of Ethiopian Airlines says that his company has pocketed a record profit despite the temporary grounding of its Boeing 787 Dreamliner planes. Tewolde Gebremariam told The Associated Press Monday that his company is expecting a record profit with 20 to 25 percent growth in revenue and number of passengers.

U.S. Factory Activity Expands In June, Jobs Decline

July 1, 2013 2:04 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

U.S. manufacturing activity grew in June behind a pickup in new orders, exports and production. Better economic growth overseas is boosting U.S. exports and could help American factories rebound in the second half of the year. The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its index of factory activity increased to 50.9 in June. That's up from 49 in May, which was the lowest reading in four years.

Toyota Aims To Sell 5M Units In Emerging Markets

July 1, 2013 2:01 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Toyota Motor Corp. will aim to boost its sales of vehicles in emerging markets from 3.7 million in 2012 to 5 million in the future, a company executive said Monday, as the automaker predicts its global sales will reach a record 10 million units.

Alcoa To Close Smelter To Stay Competitive

July 1, 2013 10:03 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Aluminum giant Alcoa said Friday that it will close a smelting facility in Italy, its latest move to trim costs as it grapples with lower aluminum prices. Alcoa was already tamping down production at the Fusina smelter in Venice, Italy, three years ago, citing weak aluminum prices and the need to stay competitive.

China's Manufacturing Weakens In Credit Crunch

July 1, 2013 10:02 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

China's manufacturing weakened again in June amid a credit crunch and slower U.S. and European orders, two surveys showed Monday, adding to signs that growth in the world's second-largest economy is decelerating. HSBC's purchasing managers' index declined to 48.2 from May's 49.2 on a 50-point scale on which numbers below 50 show a contraction.

Germany Blocks EU Carbon Cap To Protect Automakers

June 28, 2013 2:18 pm | by Frank Jordans, Associated Press | News | Comments

Germany has blocked a European Union agreement on capping car carbon emissions because the deal could have cost jobs and harmed its domestic auto industry, officials said Friday. The blunt admission that Europe's biggest economy put business interests before environmental standards is at odds with Germany's image as a champion of green issues.

NC Auto Dealers Say They'll Keep Fighting Tesla

June 28, 2013 2:16 pm | by Chris Kardish, Associated Press | News | Comments

North Carolina auto dealers say they're moving ahead with a bill updating franchise laws without a provision that effectively bans the business model of electric car manufacturer Tesla. But Bob Glaser of the NC Automobile Dealers Association said Thursday that the group hasn't given up on a separate bill targeting the automaker that already passed the Senate last month.

Nissan Celebrates 30th Anniversary Of U.S. Manufacturing

June 28, 2013 12:53 pm | by NissanNewsroom | Videos | Comments

In conjunction with the 30th anniversary of its Smyrna, Tenn. Vehicle Assembly Plant, Nissan is adding more than 900 manufacturing jobs to support future production of the Nissan Rogue, marking the first time the Rogue has been produced in the United States.

Letter To The Editor: OMG...It's A Tesla

June 28, 2013 8:01 am | by Stuart Koford | Blogs | Comments

I have a Tesla Roadster, which I have had for four years and which has 75,000 miles on it. My impressions: Compared to the various other sports cars I have owned – Porsche, RX-7, 3000 – the car has far better acceleration and has instant response to the throttle pedal compared to the lag and roughness of all gas engine cars.

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