Germany's Volkswagen AG said its first-quarter net profit fell 38 percent to 1.95 billion euros ($2.5 billion), while Daimler AG's was down 60 percent at 564 million euros. U.S.-based Ford Motor Co. lost $462 billion in Europe and called the outlook there "uncertain," although the company's global earnings rose 15 percent to $1.6 billion.
More than a third of malaria-fighting pills used in Africa and Asia are either fake or bad quality, according to a study released last year. Rampant drug counterfeiting has undermined efforts to fight the mosquito-borne disease, which causes fever, chills and flu-like illness.
Israel Aerospace Industries says it has signed a long-term contract with U.S. defense giant Lockheed Martin to produce wings for the F-35 next-generation fighter jet. The state-owned company said Tuesday the contract is for 10 to 15 years and could generate up to $2.5 billion in sales.
Toyota held onto its status as the world's top-selling automaker in the first quarter of this year, although the three-way race with General Motors and Volkswagen is proving tight, as its sales fall in China and Japan. Toyota Motor Corp. reported Wednesday it sold 2.43 million vehicles during the January-March period.
Workers in the Rana Plaza building said it had developed such severe cracks the day before that it had been reported on local news channels. They hesitated to enter the building Wednesday morning, said Abdur Rahim, who worked in a garment factory on the fifth floor.
Speaking ahead of a climate meeting in Bonn next week, Christiana Figueres told reporters in a teleconference that much had changed, giving her optimism that a global climate pact can be reached in Paris in 2015. Figueres says climate change is worsening and governments have already committed to reaching a deal.
The Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25) showed their overall new business volume for March was $6.8 billion, flat compared to volume in March 2012. Month-over-month, new business volume was up 45 percent from February. Year to date, cumulative new business volume was up three percent compared to 2012.
The proposed changes are in line with President Barack Obama's vows to make it tougher for U.S. companies to replace American workers with cheaper labor abroad, either by opening factories overseas or subcontracting their work to outsourcing companies.
China reported an unexpected decline in economic growth to 7.7 percent in the first three months of the year from the previous quarter's 7.9 percent. Private sector economists and the World Bank have reduced their outlook for annual growth, though to a still-robust level of about 8 percent.
A high-ranking Israeli air force officer says Israel aims to develop drones that can execute nearly every battlefield operation performed today by piloted aircraft. The official says Israel's military industry is on the path to developing such technology within 40 to 50 years.
China's vehicle sales rose 13 percent in March, blistering growth by Western standards but down from 45 percent in 2009. With sales weak elsewhere, global companies that see China as a key part of their future are pouring money and technology into fighting for market share.
Only five percent of companies feel the U.S. economy will contract this year and more than half of respondents (56 percent) feel the economy will expand. Nearly all CFOs (96 percent) believe U.S. manufacturing will expand or stay the same in 2013.
Japan's finance minister is pushing back against criticism that the low value of the yen is giving its manufacturers an unfair advantage. Taro Aso told reporters Friday that over the past year, Japan has suffered trade deficits, so it's unfair to say the yen is unreasonably low.
No red carpet. No sleek limousines dropping off celebrities dressed to impress. It is the world's "least authoritative" film festival, according to one of its organizers, featuring works by unlikely filmmakers with little to no capital or experience and only smartphones as their camera equipment.
The government and plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. have predicted the cleanup would take up to 40 years. They still have to develop technology and equipment that can operate under fatally high radiation levels to locate and remove melted fuel. The reactors must be kept cool and the plant must stay safe and stable.
Overall, confidence in the equipment finance market is 54.0, an easing from the March index of 58.0, reflecting industry participants’ continuing concerns over the economy and the impact of federal policies on capital expenditures. 6.3 percent of executives responding said they believe business conditions will improve over the next four months, down from 21.9 percent in March.
The Office of Fair Trading alleges GlaxoSmithKline concluded agreements which infringed competition law with Alpharma Limited, Generics (UK) Ltd and Norton Healthcare Ltd. over the supply of paroxetine, a cheaper version of Seroxat. The watchdog says GSK's conduct amounted to an abuse of its dominant position in the same market.
Employers in Germany's key manufacturing sector are offering a pay increase that falls well short of the 5.5 percent raise a union is seeking for some 3.7 million workers. The employers' association in the southern region of Bavaria is offering a 2.3 percent increase over a 13-month period, news agency dpa reported Friday.
Commissioner Karel de Gucht told reporters after a meeting of the 27-nation bloc's trade ministers in Dublin that the talks with Washington should be concluded by October 2014, when the term of the European Commission ends and a month before U.S. holds midterm elections.
New car sales across Europe slid 10 percent in the first quarter of 2013 to 2.9 million, down from 3.3 million in 2012, the European automakers association ACEA reported from Brussels on Wednesday. Even in Germany, one of Europe's strongest economies, new car sales plunged 13 percent during the first three months of the year.
The European Union's antitrust body has cleared a $2.7 billion takeover of a British rail technology company by German industrial conglomerate Siemens. The European Commission said Siemens AG's takeover of Invensys PLC's rail division does not violate antitrust rules since the merged entity will continue to face strong competitors.
The German Parliament has rejected an attempt to introduce a quota for women on companies' boards of directors — defusing for now a divisive issue for Chancellor Angela Merkel's government. Merkel's center-right coalition has long been at odds over whether to introduce a fixed quota and there are divisions within Merkel's conservative party, too.
Swiss food and drinks giant Nestle SA notched a gain of 2.3 percent in first-quarter sales and confirmed Thursday it was on track for another year of steady growth, despite economic problems in a number of its key markets in the developed world.
Nissan Motor Co. in a report to the government Thursday said it will recall a total of 85,220 minivans produced between November 2010 and February 2012 under its Serena and Suzuki Motor Corp.'s Landy brands. A component of an electricity generator attached to the engine could drop out due to a defective installment.
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.