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Hot Off the Press


Aluminum Fab. Plant to Service Mexican Market

Friday, March 14, 2003
Hydro Aluminum North America, an integrated aluminum producer, announced that its Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico plant is now offering products and services to industrial end users in the Mexican market. The 60,000-sq.-ft. plant offers fabrication, light assembly and integrated engineering of total processes from alloy to finished product.

More Tough Times for Auto Parts Makers

Thursday, March 13, 2003
Look for struggling U.S. auto parts makers to close shop or be bought out by larger competitors as slowing auto sales and production cutbacks bring continued shakeout in the industry. Both General Motors and Ford announced plans to cut vehicle production in 2003’s second quarter, following curtailed car and light-truck sales in February. Experts say that may push smaller parts suppliers, surviving on razor-thin profit margins thanks to recent record vehicle sales, into closure or buyouts. According to the Original Equipment Suppliers Association, domestic auto suppliers numbered about 10,000 in 2000, one-third less than 1990 numbers. By 2010, only about 4000 to 5000 suppliers may remain.

North Star Steel to Close Wire-Rod Plant

Wednesday, March 12, 2003
North Star Steel, citing a lackluster market for wire rod and steel reinforcement bars, will close its Kingman, AZ, plant by March 17. The plant had begun operations in September 1996. “The market for steel reinforcement bars and wire-rod products has not met our expectations,” said Jim Thompson, North Star president, in announcing the closing. “This was a difficult decision to make, but we could not continue manufacturing product at a significant financial loss to the company.” The shutdown affects 113 workers, who will be offered the opportunity to relocate to other North Star operations.


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