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Today in Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

Nissan, NASA To Work Together On Self-Driving Technology

January 8, 2015 11:41 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

Japanese automaker Nissan and NASA are teaming up to advance the technology behind cars that drive themselves. Yokohama-based Nissan Motor Co. and NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California, announced Thursday a five-year research-and-development partnership for autonomous vehicle...

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Army Plan For OR Ex-Chemical Site May Include Price Tag

January 8, 2015 7:40 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

Economic development leaders in Eastern Oregon who thought the U.S. Army would give them, at no charge, thousands of acres where weapons such as nerve and mustard gas once were stored now say the Pentagon is telling them to think again. Instead of turning over the site of the Umatilla Chemical...

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3 Executives Charged In WV Chemical Spill Plead Not Guilty

January 8, 2015 5:43 pm | by Jonathan Mattise, The Associated Press | Comments

Three executives charged in a chemical spill last January in West Virginia pleaded not guilty in federal court Thursday. The pleas come a day after an FBI affidavit was unsealed, saying Freedom Industries knew about critical flaws at its Charleston plant more than a decade before the spill, but...

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FCC Hints At Utility-Style Rules For Internet

January 8, 2015 2:56 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler appears poised to propose new rules that would classify Internet service providers as public utilities in a move designed to ensure everyone has the same access to free content online. Wheeler strongly indicated Wednesday that he favors the shift to tougher regulations, describing...

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How Lower Oil Prices Could Fuel More Hiring In The U.S.

January 8, 2015 2:51 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | Comments

In June, when oil cost $107 a barrel, U.S. employers added a healthy number of jobs — 267,000. Now, with oil below $50, hopes are rising that hiring in the United States is poised to intensify. Goldman Sachs forecasts that if oil stays near its current price, the economy will add 300,000 more jobs this...

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CA Says Bullet Train Could Be Climate Solution

January 8, 2015 2:15 pm | by Scott Smith, The Associated Press | Comments

California broke ground Tuesday on its $68 billion high-speed rail system, promising to combat global warming while whisking travelers between Los Angeles and San Francisco in less than three hours. The bullet train project, the first in the nation to get underway, faces challenges from...

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Honda Fined $70M For Not Reporting Death, Injury Complaints

January 8, 2015 1:45 pm | by Joan Lowy, The Associated Press | Comments

The Obama administration said Thursday it is fining Honda $70 million — the largest civil penalty levied against an automaker — for not reporting to regulators some 1,729 complaints that its vehicles caused deaths and injuries, and for not reporting warranty claims. The Japanese automaker...

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Applications For Unemployment Benefits Fall, Suggesting Strong Hiring

January 8, 2015 1:20 pm | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | Comments

Fewer Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, a sign that employers expect ongoing economic growth and the need to hold onto workers. The Labor Department said Thursday that applications for unemployment benefits fell 4,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted...

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Toyota President Reveals Plans To Build New Overseas Plant

January 8, 2015 12:04 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

Toyota Motor Corp. is looking to build a new plant abroad, company President Akio Toyoda indicated, as the world's biggest carmaker nears an end to its self-imposed three-year ban on such projects. Toyota, speaking to reporters in Nagoya, fell short of referring to a possible site. But sources close to the matter said the company...

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Coca-Cola Cutting Up To 1.8K Jobs

January 8, 2015 11:50 am | by The Associated Press | Comments

Coca-Cola says it will cut between 1,600 and 1,800 jobs in coming months to trim costs. The Atlanta-based company says it began notifying workers in the U.S. and some international locations Thursday. The company said job types are across all parts of its business and include about 500 at its...

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Shrinking Foreign Oil Bill Sends U.S. Trade Deficit Lower

January 8, 2015 10:31 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | Comments

The U.S. trade deficit fell in November to the lowest level in almost a year, thanks to the country's swiftly shrinking thirst for foreign oil. The deficit — imports minus exports — narrowed to $39 billion during the month, down 7.7 percent from a revised October deficit of $42.2 billion, the Commerce Department reported...

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GasBuddy Releases Fuel Price Outlook For 2015

January 8, 2015 9:49 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Comments

With all the talk of falling oil prices and its effect on the global economy, companies and consumers are keeping a close eye on the fluctuating gas prices. This week, GasBuddy has released its GasBuddy Fuel Price Outlook 2015. The report forecasts monthly gas averages and dives into the factors affecting the...

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Lawmakers Raise Questions Over Incentives For VW

January 8, 2015 9:33 am | by The Associated Press | Comments

Some Republican lawmakers from a southeastern Tennessee county that's home to a Volkswagen plant are raising questions about a $300 million incentive package for the German automaker because of the United Auto Workers union's role at the facility. Republican Gov. Bill Haslam last summer struck...

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EPA Delays Final Rule On Emissions From New Power Plants

January 8, 2015 9:30 am | by Maura Falk, Associate Editor, Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operations | Comments

The final ruling on carbon dioxide emissions from new coal-fired power plants, which was supposed to be due on January 8th, has been delayed, leaving many frustrated. Republicans are claiming it is a political move on the part of the Obama administration.The proposed rule was announced in September 2013, published...

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Tobacco Companies Criticize Federal Judge For Misleading Public

January 7, 2015 2:46 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

Tobacco companies say they are being forced by a federal judge to inaccurately call themselves unscrupulous villains who continue to deceive the American public. In an appeals court filing Wednesday, the industry says the statements ordered by the judge in a government lawsuit would only trigger...

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Drones Must Learn To Navigate Populated Areas

January 7, 2015 2:10 pm | by Scott Mayerowitz, AP Business Writer | Comments

For drones to make it to the big time, they will need to learn to get around in towns and cities — without falling on car hoods or crashing into pedestrians. Technology has advanced to the point where hobbyists can fly the unmanned aircraft with their iPhones. But nobody has yet developed a successful system for...

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Small Businesses Have Even More Credit-Card Reader Options

January 7, 2015 1:43 pm | by Joseph Pisani, AP Business Writer | Comments

Small business owners looking to ditch traditional credit card readers have more options than ever. Online retailers Amazon and Etsy are just two of the latest companies to offer mobile credit card readers to small companies, joining the likes of Square, PayPal and Intuit. Mobile credit...

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U.S. Gas Prices End 2014 At Lowest Levels Since 2009

January 7, 2015 1:28 pm | by U.S. Energy Information Administration‎ | Comments

Across the country, retail prices for regular grade gasoline reached the lowest levels in four years primarily as a result of falling crude prices in the second half of 2014. As of December 12, the weekly retail price for regular gasoline in each city for which EIA collects data was below $3.00 per gallon (gal) for the first time since...

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Survey: U.S. Companies Stepped Up Hiring In December

January 7, 2015 12:32 pm | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer | Comments

U.S. businesses ramped up hiring last month in the latest sign that the nation's economy is expanding despite worries about global growth that have sent financial markets tumbling. Payroll processor ADP said Wednesday that companies added 241,000 jobs in December, up from 227,000 in...

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Strong Dollar Means Cheap Gas, Imports For U.S.

January 7, 2015 12:19 pm | by Josh Boak, AP Economics Writer | Comments

As the global economy has weakened, a forcefully stronger U.S. dollar has emerged. The fallout from the greenback's appreciation is reverberating around the world. A more valuable dollar translates into cheaper oil and the imports lining U.S. store shelves. That represents both a boon for American consumers and a...

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