Archive for the ‘industry’ Category

Toyoto Passes GM in Sales; GM Fears Cash Collapse

January 21, 2009

Poor GM.  It may run out of money before March 31st, and for the first time ever, Toyota sold more cars than the stuggling U.S. automaker.

General Motors sold fewer cars globally than Toyota last year, as the Japanese automaker passed the Detroit company for the first time. GM says it sold 8.356 million cars and trucks in 2008, falling about 616,000 vehicles short of Toyota’s total of 8.972 million.  General Motors Corp. posted an 11 percent drop for the year, while Toyota’s sales fell 4 percent.

Associated Press

And now GM needs some money – quick!

The target date for General Motors Corp. to get its second installment of government loans passed last week, but a top company executive says he expects the money to arrive in the next several days.

Fritz Henderson, GM’s president and chief operating officer, said without the second installment of $5.4 billion, the company would run out of cash long before March 31.

In December, the Treasury Department authorized $13.4 billion in loans for GM and another $4 billion for Chrysler LLC to keep both automakers out of bankruptcy.

Read the rest:
http://www.nydailynews.com/money/2009/01/2
1/2009-01-21_general_motors_may_run_out_o
f_cash_by_ma.html

China fears recession riots

January 7, 2009

A stark warning by state media Wednesday of possible mass unrest in China signalled deepening fears over the global recession, as Europe grappled with more job losses and an energy cutoff during a winter freeze.

The economy of Asian powerhouse China might become so bad in the next few months that the fabric of the world’s most populous nation could start unraveling, the authoritative weekly Outlook, published by the Xinhua news agency, warned in its latest edition.

By Beth O’Connell, AFP

The magazine said that “enterprise closedowns, layoffs and labour disputes have significantly increased” and with workers’ livelihoods threatened, “their pent-up discontent could easily burst out… and spark mass conflicts.”

European workers are also feeling the brunt of the global recession with official data showing that the number of people out of work in Germany rose by 114,000 in December to 3.1 million.

On Britain’s high street, iconic retailer Marks & Spencer said it would slash up to 1,230 jobs and close 27 stores as consumer spending, the driver of the British economy, shrinks.

Analysts expect the Bank of England to intervene in this recessionary climate Thursday and cut its key interest rate to the lowest ever level.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090107/bs_afp
/financeeconomyworld_newsmlmmd

Why Obama’s green jobs plan might work

January 4, 2009
Some states — including Michigan — already see renewable energy as their future: It’s the only sector that appears to be making room for more employees despite the recession.
By Marla Dickerson
The Los Angeles Times
January 4, 2009
Reporting from Hemlock, Mich. — While Detroit’s automakers struggle to rebuild their sputtering operations, the key to jump-starting Michigan’s economy may lie 80 miles northwest of the Motor City.

This is the home of Hemlock Semiconductor Corp. It makes a material crucial for constructing photovoltaic panels. And that has turned this snow-covered hamlet into an unlikely hotbed for solar energy.
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On Dec. 15, the same week that General Motors Corp. and Chrysler begged $17.4 billion from taxpayers to stave off collapse, Hemlock announced a $3-billion expansion that could create hundreds of jobs. It’s a rare piece of good news for this battered Rust Belt state, whose 9.6% unemployment rate is the nation’s highest.

In contrast to Detroit iron, Hemlock’s quartz-based polycrystalline silicon is in such demand that workers in white smocks and protective gear toil around the clock to get it to customers around the globe.

Hemlock has been deluged with applications from idle factory hands such as former autoworker Don Sloboda. The 50-year-old Saginaw resident has been retraining at a local community college for what he hopes is the region’s new engine of job growth.

Read the rest:
http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-
greenjobs4-2009jan04,0,378269.story

America’s Future? Grim Reality Unless Major Changes Are Adopted

December 10, 2008

In the future, America will be more diverse, more open to gays and more ploitically correct.

Americans will be even more caring for the human rights of their fellow man.

But Americans will generally be less wealthy, more stupid, more drug addicted and mezmerized by the future of the Internet and “Dancing With The Stars.”

Can another conclusion be reached?

America has lost or given away its industrial prowess.  Even the “Big 3” auto companies are on the public dole.

VysokePece1.jpg

Drug and alcohol abuse and addiction are up.  And if you go to any hospital for “care,” you’ll end up loaded with drugs.

Americans are working harder, playing less and earning less for more than ever before.

And our schools are failing miserably.

America still has massive military might: but many lawmakers want to give this away and spend the money on “other priorities.”

The USS Ronald Reagan
Above: Symbol of American greatness or a big bill payer?

In the future America, food security may be an issue, we could run out of water, and our health care system may collapse.

I didn’t make all this up: I am just good at reading the tea leaves (and the headlines).

Barack Obama has a full plate.  And so do parents, lawmakers, teachers and business executives: if we want to see a brighter future for our grandchildren.

Related:

 U.S. Students Failing International Science Measures

Government Picks Winners, Losers, Calls Other Shots and Pays The Bills: Happy Now?

Get the Feeling Russia and China Are Slicing Up The World and the U.S. Will Be Left Out?

Juggernaut of U.S. Industrial Might Now “Rust Belt,” For Good Or Bad?

California Water Crisis Signals Warning for Other States

Lofty Hopes, Dreams Shattered By Politics, Terrorism, Economy, Other Realities

Nationalization of Select Businesses: U.S. Government Perilously Close

December 9, 2008

Congress and the President-elect are doing a deal to “bail out” or provided “loans” to major American industries and businesses.  Then there is an idea that perhaps the Chief Executive Officers need to retire — a decision made for decades in America by stockholders and Boards of Directors…not by legislators or other politicians.  Are we on the slippery slope?  And to what?

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When President-elect Barack Obama talked on Sunday about realigning the American automobile industry he was quick to offer a caution, lest he sound more like the incoming leader of France, or perhaps Japan.

“We don’t want government to run companies,” Obama told Tom Brokaw on “Meet the Press.” “Generally, government historically hasn’t done that very well.”

By David E. Sanger
The New York Times

U.S. lawmakers Barney Frank, left, and Nancy Pelosi, right, speaking at a news conference on the proposed bailout of the U.S. automakers on Monday. (Doug Mills/The New York Times)

But what Obama went on to describe was a long-term government bailout that would be conditioned on government oversight. It could mean that the government would mandate, or at least heavily influence, what kind of cars companies make, what mileage and environmental standards they must meet and what large investments they are permitted to make — to recreate an industry that Obama said “actually works, that actually functions.”

It all sounds perilously close to a word that no one in Obama’s camp wants to be caught uttering: nationalization.

Not since Harry Truman seized America’s steel mills in 1952 rather than allow a strike to imperil the conduct of the Korean War has Washington toyed with nationalization….

Related:
Government Picks Winners, Losers, Calls Other Shots and Pays The Bills: Happy Now?

Read the rest:
http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/12/09/business/09nationalize.php