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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

China Investigating Qualcomm, InterDigital

February 19, 2014 7:55 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Regulators are investigating whether U.S. technology companies Qualcomm and InterDigital violated China's anti-monopoly law by charging excessive fees for patent licenses, a government spokesman said Wednesday.        

Obama, Fellow Dems Are At Odds On Big Trade Bills

February 18, 2014 2:20 pm | by Tom Raum, Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama wants to put major emerging trade deals with Europe and Asia on a "fast track" to congressional passage. But with midterm elections looming, many fellow Democrats are working to sidetrack them instead.     

Toyota Resumes Operations At 3 Plants After Heavy Snowfall

February 18, 2014 12:50 pm | News | Comments

Toyota Motor Corp. resumed operations Tuesday morning at three plants in central Japan that were shut the previous day as parts delivery was suspended due to heavy snowfall last weekend, while many plants of other automakers remained idled.   

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Judge Approves Fisker Asset Sale To Wanxiang

February 18, 2014 11:14 am | by Randall Chase, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

In an auction stretching over three days last week, Wanxiang beat out Hybrid Technology, led by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, with a final bid of $149.2 million in cash and other considerations. The judge approved the asset sale at a court hearing Tuesday.

Europe At Origin Of Chronic U.S. Execution Dilemma

February 18, 2014 9:24 am | by Juergen Baetz, Associated Press | News | Comments

There's one big reason why the United States has a dearth of execution drugs so acute that some states are considering solutions such as firing squads and gas chambers: Europe won't allow the drugs to be exported because of its fierce hostility to capital punishment.

China City Closes Poultry Markets To Stop Bird Flu

February 18, 2014 8:31 am | News | Comments

The major city of Guangzhou in southern China closed its live poultry markets on Saturday for two weeks to halt the spread of the H7N9 strain of bird flu. The closure lasts through Feb. 28 "to strengthen work to control the spread of the H7N9 flu," the city government said in a one-sentence announcement on its microblog account.

U.S. Olive Oil Pushing Gov't To Test Imported Oils

February 18, 2014 8:04 am | by Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press | News | Comments

The tiny California olive industry says European olive oil filling U.S. shelves often is mislabeled and lower-grade oil, and they're pushing the federal government to give more scrutiny to imported varieties. One congressman-farmer even goes so far as suggesting labels on imported oil say "extra rancid" rather than "extra virgin."

Science, Not Muscle, Driving Many Olympic Wins

February 14, 2014 2:19 pm | by Angela Charlton, Associated Press | News | Comments

Much as we'd like to, no one today can pretend that the Olympics — or any sport, for that matter — is just about exceptional physical ability anymore. It's about the marriage between exceptional humans and exceptional technology, a union in which technology is increasingly the breadwinner.

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Toyota City To Earn 5 Times More Corporate Tax In Fiscal 2014

February 14, 2014 2:03 pm | News | Comments

The city of Toyota, where Toyota Motor Corp. is headquartered, is expecting over five times more corporate tax income in fiscal 2014 than the previous year, thanks to the leading Japanese carmaker's robust performance.      

Report: Engines Failed On Helicopter That Hit Pub

February 14, 2014 1:58 pm | News | Comments

A police helicopter that crashed onto a pub in Glasgow, killing 10 people, suffered double engine failure for reasons that remain unclear, investigators said Friday. The Air Accidents Investigation Branch said in an interim report that the right engine on the Eurocopter EC135 Type 2 helicopter "flamed out and shortly after the left engine flamed out."

Eurozone Recovery Accelerates But Jobs Elusive

February 14, 2014 12:55 pm | by Juergen Baetz, Associated Press | News | Comments

The economy of the euro bloc grew 0.3 percent in the October-December period from the previous quarter, the Eurostat statistics office said Friday. That was slightly faster than expected and up from the third quarter's 0.1 percent. The recovery remains tepid, however, at least by global standards.

UK Authorities Reportedly Arrest 2 In Rolls Probe

February 14, 2014 11:33 am | News | Comments

Britain's Press Association says U.K. authorities have arrested two people as part of an investigation into the dealings in Asia of the engine maker Rolls-Royce PLC. The arrests come after the fraud office announced in December that it had opened a criminal investigation into bribery and corruption allegations at the defense and aerospace group.

Iranian Satellite Case In N.Y. Takes Complex Turn

February 14, 2014 10:42 am | by Eric Tucker, Associated Press | News | Comments

Since his plea, the federal government has approved for export to Iran the very products he was convicted of helping ship, his lawyers say. Then federal prosecutors in New York told a judge after the sentencing hearing that they had mistakenly exaggerated the equipment's capabilities.

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Renault Earnings Slashed By Over Half In 2013

February 14, 2014 10:36 am | News | Comments

Renault says its earnings were more than halved last year even as car sales began to rebound, as heavy restructuring costs ate into the French car maker's profits. The maker of the Twingo and Clio hatchbacks said that plans to revamp its product lineup beginning in the fall and expansion in the developing world will help it lift revenue $68 billion by 2016.

Oreo Maker Mondelez Sees Cookie Troubles In China

February 14, 2014 10:24 am | News | Comments

Mondelez reported a fourth-quarter profit Wednesday that fell short of Wall Street expectations as the Oreo maker struggled with cookie sales in China. The company, which also makes Cadbury, Chips Ahoy, Ritz and Trident gum, said its core revenue for the final three months of the year rose 2.5 percent, primarily as a result of higher volume.

Manufacturing.net Rewind: A Sluggish Economy; U.S. Drone Makers Get Shut Out

February 14, 2014 8:47 am | News | Comments

Check out some of this week's top headlines from across Manufacturing.net, from Chinese villagers attacking a factory to the Volkswagen incentives being threatened by the UAW. Also, a judge allows a lawsuit over cancer in children against Whirlpool, and a slowdown in China will be felt around the world.

Israel Laser Shield Moves Closer To Deployment

February 14, 2014 8:20 am | by Satish Cheney, Associated Press | News | Comments

An Israeli state-owned arms company developing a laser-based missile shield that evokes "Star Wars" style technology says its deployment over the country is closer to becoming a reality. Rafael Advanced Defense Systems said development of the system was advanced enough for the company to be comfortable with publicizing it at this week's Singapore Airshow.

Nissan Recalling Over 18,000 Vehicles In Japan

February 13, 2014 2:53 pm | News | Comments

In a report filed with Japan's transport ministry, the automaker said compressed air induction pipes in the vehicles may detach due to vibration from diesel turbo engines, potentially making it impossible for the vehicles to accelerate or causing engines to stall.

Nestle: Consumer Demand To Remain Weak In 2014

February 13, 2014 1:50 pm | by John Heilprin, Associated Press | News | Comments

The maker of Nescafe, Perrier, Jenny Craig and Haagen Dazs is a major buyer of food commodities such as wheat, sugar, and milk and its results are a good indicator of the strength of consumer demand around the world.      

Gov: Bridgestone Agrees To Plead Guilty

February 13, 2014 11:58 am | by Pete Yost, Associated Press | News | Comments

Bridgestone Corp. has agreed to plead guilty in a price-fixing conspiracy and pay a $425 million criminal fine in a Justice Department investigation that has swept the automotive parts industry. Twenty-six companies including Tokyo-based Bridgestone have pleaded guilty or agreed to plead guilty in the Justice Department's ongoing probe into price fixing and bid rigging.

China Announces $1.6B Air Pollution Fund

February 13, 2014 9:48 am | News | Comments

The fund will be set up to reward rather than offer subsidies for the prevention and control of air pollution in the key areas, according to a statement released after a Wednesday meeting of the State Council led by Premier Li Keqiang. It said controlling pollutants such as particulate matter in the air should be a key task.

Brazil Plane Maker Sells Sets To India's Air Costa

February 13, 2014 8:42 am | News | Comments

Brazilian plane maker Embraer says India's Air Costa has placed a firm order for 50 passenger jets for an estimated $2.94 billion. Embraer says in a Thursday statement that the order is for 25 E190-E2s and 25 E195-E2s. The contract signed by Air Costa includes options for an additional 50 aircraft.

Chobani To Donate Yogurt Intended For U.S. Athletes

February 13, 2014 8:19 am | by Candice Choi, AP Food Industry Writer | News | Comments

The shipment has been held up in a refrigerated warehouse at New Jersey's Newark Liberty International Airport after Russian authorities said the U.S. Department of Agriculture failed to provide a necessary certificate under its customs rules. 

China's Auto Sales Growth Tumbles In January

February 13, 2014 8:16 am | by Joe McDonald, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Drivers in the world's biggest auto market bought 1.85 million passenger vehicles, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers said Thursday. It was the first time monthly sales surpassed 1.8 million. Auto sales growth is forecast to decelerate sharply from last year's 15.7 percent expansion to about 8 to 10 percent. Sales grew 17 percent in December.

Curbs Shut U.S. Drone Makers Out Of Export Markets

February 13, 2014 8:03 am | by Kelvin Chan, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The controls give rival drone makers from countries such as Israel and China a chance to win more business in the growing global market for unmanned aerial vehicles, which one group forecasts to more than double in the next decade.   

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