08/19/2018

News

China Has 487 Electric-Car Makers, and Local Governments Are Clamoring for More

There are now 487 electric-vehicle makers in China, according to the latest official tally, and most are brand new. In June, the National Development and Reform Commission and China Construction Bank announced a new $47 billion fund for EVs and other high-tech industries. Regional governments are making similar funding commitments. Direct government subsidies on electric-vehicle […]

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Manufacturing Sector Hits a Sweet Spot

The manufacturing sector staged a quick turnaround in June after a fire at the plant of a Ford pickup-truck supplier knocked output lower the previous month, extending a solid run of growth for U.S. industrial activity. The fire, which occurred May 2 at a parts plant in Michigan operated by a unit of China’s Wanfeng […]

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Tesla to Build Auto Factory in Shanghai

Tesla Inc. will build a factory in Shanghai, the city government announced on Tuesday, a move expected to boost sales in the world’s largest auto market but one that could also draw fire as U.S. manufacturers face political pressure to keep jobs at home. The electric-car maker will set up a plant with an annual […]

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Can’t Find a PlayStation 4? Blame It On a Part Barely Bigger Than a Speck

It happened in Japan earlier this year when Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 4 suddenly became hard to find. A popular new game called “Monster Hunter: World” led to a surge of demand for the videogame machine. Engineers at Sony say the company couldn’t quickly make more because components ran short, especially the part called a multilayer […]

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SolarCity, once king of rooftop solar, slips into shadow

Five years ago, SolarCity ruled the rooftops. No other company in the fast-growing solar industry installed nearly as many panels on American homes. The pace of installation was accelerating quarter after quarter, leaving such rivals as Sunrun and Vivint far behind. Then electric auto manufacturer Tesla bought the company. Now, what once was SolarCity appears […]

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Factory Activity Heats Up as Manufacturers Position for Tariffs

American factory activity accelerated for the second straight month this summer, in part because manufacturers were scrambling to move goods ahead of threatened tariffs. The Institute for Supply Management on Monday said its manufacturing index rose to 60.2 in June from 58.7 in May. Numbers above 50 indicate activity is expanding across the manufacturing sector, […]

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How Tesla uses cash from Nevada casinos to boost its bottom line

Given Elon Musk’s dubious track record for hitting his goals, it may be a roll of the dice whether the Tesla CEO delivers a profit later this year. Fittingly, his success will depend partly on money from Nevada casinos. Since 2015, Tesla has boosted its bottom line by selling tax credits to casinos such as […]

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Nonprofit to train workers for future of manufacturing

The Bay Area’s growing manufacturing sector is often portrayed as the region’s last best chance to bring back some of the well-paying, blue-collar jobs that have been disappearing for decades. But entrepreneurs at the forefront of the so-called “modern maker” movement — nimble boutique companies crafting everything from robots and drones to custom eyeglasses and […]

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Tesla to cut 9 percent of workforce in ‘difficult, but necessary’ reorganization

Tesla plans to cut 9 percent of its workforce, Electrek reported on Tuesday, in what CEO Elon Musk called a “difficult, but necessary reorg” that will impact salaried employees but spare the production line at its Fremont factory. The Palo Alto-based car maker began layoffs on Monday, Electrek said, citing sources familiar with the matter. […]

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Elon Musk’s Tesla says new state rule punishes it for doing business in California

The only large-scale car manufacturer in California argues that doing business in the state is hard enough without a fast-developing labor regulation backed by organizations that want to unionize its Fremont plant. Elon Musk’s Tesla is fighting a rule under development by two state agencies that would require it to be certified as a “fair […]

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What happened to the ‘affordable’ $35,000 Tesla Model 3?

It’s March 2016. Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk is on stage for the dramatic unveiling of the Tesla Model 3. Tesla will make hundreds of thousands a year, he said. It will be fun to drive. It will be affordable. “In terms of price, of course, it’ll be $35,000,” he beamed, awash in thunderous applause. […]

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Stalls, stops and breakdowns: Problems plague push for electric buses

When Chinese battery maker BYD Ltd. approached Southern California officials in 2008 touting ambitious plans to build electric cars, local politicians jumped at the promise of thousands of jobs and cleaner air. In the nine years since, agencies have awarded BYD grants, subsidies and public contracts worth more than $330 million for its battery-powered buses, […]

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Where U.S. Manufacturing Is Thriving In 2018

Yet, manufacturing’s contributions to the economy are far out of proportion to its shrinking share of employment. In 2013, the manufacturing sector employed 12 million workers, but generated an additional 17.1 million indirect jobs. It has the largest multiplier of any economic sector: each dollar’s worth of manufactured goods generates $1.40 in output from other […]

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Just how much is Tesla worth to the Bay Area and California?

In the Bay Area, Tesla’s biggest impact is seen in the number of jobs the company has created. Alameda County, which is home to Tesla’s Fremont factory, claimed 5,081 Tesla workers as residents, while 5,737 jobs came from residents of Santa Clara County, 735 from San Mateo County and 352 hailed from Sacramento. The study […]

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Solar-Panel Makers Ramp Up U.S. Manufacturing Plans

At least three panel companies have announced manufacturing plans in the U.S. in recent months. China’s JinkoSolar Holding Co. is opening a factory in Jacksonville, Fla. SunPower Corp. has agreed to acquire struggling panel maker SolarWorld Americas Inc. First Solar Inc. plans to open a new factory in Ohio, where it already has some panel-making […]

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