U.S. Manufacturers Temper Expectations for Hiring and Investment

The National Association of Manufacturers in a quarterly outlook survey found its members now expect capital investment to grow 1.9% over the next 12 months, down from a 2.3% forecast in March. Full-time employment is expected to expand only 0.8%, down from 1.9%, and wages are seen rising 1.6%, down from 1.9%.

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Farmer Bros. Taps Texas for New HG

“Farmer Bros. told the Business Journal earlier this year that it expected its relocation plan to result in annual savings of from $12 million to $15 million, beginning in the latter half of next year. However, moving will cost the company between $35 million to $40 million in new facility costs with an additional $20 million to $25 million in anticipated capital expenditures for furniture, machinery, equipment and other necessities. The company expects the cost of moving to be partially offset by profits from the sale of its Torrance headquarters, which company officials believe to be worth as much as $35 million.”

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Drop in Manufacturing Takes Shine Off Small Gain in Industrial Production

It’s unclear whether the decline in manufacturing is temporary linked to cold weather or if it’s a sign of underlying economic weakness that could persist, economists said.

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End of Refinery Strike in Sight; Gas Prices May Fall

The strike has been one contributor to rising gasoline prices, which had previously fallen to levels not seen in years. Although other factors may have had more impact on the rising prices — including an explosion at a Torrance refinery — some analysts believe that the resolution of the labor strike will send prices down.

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U.S. Manufacturers Trim Optimism Amid Strong Dollar and Rising Health-Care Costs

U.S. manufacturers expect sales to continue to grow this year, but fear the effects of rising health-care costs, a strong dollar and the West Coast port strike, according to a new industry survey.

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Union Demands Driving Railcar Jobs Out of California, Japanese Firm Says

Kinkisharyo International of Osaka said it is now looking at factory sites outside California, saying pressure from organized labor has made it difficult to do business in the state. Union officials and activists, however, argue they are simply trying to hold the company to environmental rules it should be following.

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Watchdog Groups Ask State to Stop “Harmful” Tesla Competition

A coalition of nonprofits say states are in a race to the bottom in the competition to win a giant Tesla Motors battery factory. In California, lawmakers are set to consider a tax and regulatory incentive package for the company.

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SpaceX Sued Under WARN Act for Up to 400 Layoffs

In a stunning development just 48 hours after Breitbart California published “262,” employees at Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) headquarters in Hawthorne, California filed a lawsuit claiming the rocket builder on or about July 21st violated California Labor Law by laying off up to 400 factory workers, or about 11% of the entire company workforce.

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Tesla Supplier Futuris Automotive Inks Big Lease in Newark

Futuris Automotive Inc., a supplier to Tesla Motors, just inked a deal with Prologis for 160,000 square feet of office and industrial space at 6601 Overlake Place in Newark.

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Should Other Nations Follow Germany’s Lead on Promoting Solar Power

“Solar power itself is a good thing, but Germany’s pro-renewables policy has been a disaster. It has the absurd distinction of completing the trifecta of bad energy policy:

1. Bad for consumers
2. Bad for producers
3. Bad for the environment (yes, really; I’ll explain)

Pretty much the only people who benefit are affluent home-owners and solar panel installation companies. A rising tide of opposition and resentment is growing among the German press and public.”

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The US Skills Gap: Could It Threaten a Manufacturing Renaissance

Our research finds little evidence of a meaningful and persistent skills gap in most parts of the U.S., including in its most important manufacturing zones. The real problem is that companies have become too passive in recruiting and developing skilled workers at a time when the U.S. education system has moved away from a focus on manufacturing skills in order to put greater emphasis on other capabilities. Over the long term, therefore, serious skills shortages could develop unless action is taken.

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The US as One of the Developed World’s Lowest-Cost Manufacturers

We project that the U.S., as a result of its increasing competitiveness in manufacturing, will capture $70 billion to $115 billion in annual exports from other nations by the end of the decade. About two-thirds of these export gains could come from production shifts to the U.S. from leading European nations and Japan. By 2020, higher U.S. exports, combined with production work that will likely be “reshored” from China, could create 2.5 million to 5 million American factory and service jobs associated with increased manufacturing.

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Boeing Moves Advanced-Concepts Engineering to California

Boeing is shifting more engineering jobs from Washington state to Southern California, the latest in a series of such changes that could see hundreds of jobs moving away.

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Manufacturers: Shale Production Driving Manufacturing Renaissance

New Report Shows Shale Development Supporting Millions of Jobs and Boosting Income and Trade

Washington, D.C., September 4, 2013 – According to a report released today, the United States will continue to reap enormous economic and job-creation benefits from domestic oil and shale gas production.

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Energy Boom Due to Fracking Boosts Manufacturers, but Where are the Jobs?

Manufacturers consume a lot of energy, particularly natural gas. Increased domestic production of natural gas has lowered its price, and a new study by IHS estimates industrial production will increase by 3.5 percent by the end of this decade as a result of the shale energy revolution.

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