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U.S. factory output rises for fifth straight month PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by JOSH BOAK, AP Economics Writer   
Friday, 17 January 2014 11:04

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factory output rose for a fifth straight month in December, as manufacturers cranked out more cars and trucks, appliances and processed food. The gains suggest factories gave economic growth a strong boost at the end of the year.

The Federal Reserve said Friday that factory production rose 0.4 percent in December. That follows gains of 0.6 percent in both November and October. Automakers increased their production 1.8 percent last month and 10.4 percent year over year.

Higher consumer demand is driving much of the increased manufacturing activity. Production of appliances, furniture, carpeting, food and clothing all grew in December. Output of consumer goods gained 0.5 percent.

Overall industrial production, which includes manufacturing, mining and utilities, increased 0.3 percent in December. That's also the fifth straight monthly gain.

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Wal-Mart joins initiative on farmworker pay in Florida PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by MIKE SCHNEIDER, Associated Press WILFREDO LEE, Associated Press   
Friday, 17 January 2014 07:13

NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. on Thursday joined an initiative that will require its Florida tomato suppliers to increase farmworker pay and protect workers from forced labor and sexual assault, among other things.

The nation's largest retailer became the most influential corporation to join the initiative promoted by a coalition of farmworker activists based in southwest Florida. Farmworkers with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers said they welcomed Wal-Mart to its Fair Food Program since no other company has the market strength and consumer reach it has when it comes to selling produce.

"Through this collaboration, not only will thousands of hard-working farmworkers see concrete improvements to their lives, but millions of consumers will learn about the Fair Food Program and of a better way to buy fruits and vegetables grown and harvested here in the U.S," said Cruz Salacio, a spokesman for the Coalition of Immokalee Workers.

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White Castle slider called 'most influential' PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Friday, 17 January 2014 10:38

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Time magazine says White Castle's small, square "sliders" are "the most influential burger of all time."

The magazine notes the "now-iconic square patty" that debuted in 1921 in Wichita, Kan. was the first burger to spawn a fast-food empire. White Castle has been based in Columbus since 1934.

The Time story — http://ti.me/1eWFs19 — puts the White Castle burger at the top of the list of the 17 most influential burgers of all time, beating out burgers from McDonald's and In-N-Out.

White Castle vice president Jamie Richardson tells The Columbus Dispatch that "slider" has been a term of endearment for the delectable little burgers since the 1950s.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 
Target breach appears to be part of broader scam PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by ANNE D'INNOCENZIO, AP Retail Writer   
Friday, 17 January 2014 07:09

NEW YORK (AP) — The security breach that hit Target Corp. during the holiday season appears to have been part of a broader and highly sophisticated scam that potentially affected a large number of retailers, according to a report published by a global cyber intelligence firm that works with the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security.

The report, made public Thursday by iSight Partners of Dallas, offers more insight into the breach at Target. That attack affected 40 million credit and debit card accounts and led to the theft of personal information, including email addresses and names, of as many as 70 million customers.

The report said that a malicious program vacuuming personal data from terminals at store check-out stations was "almost certainly derived" from BlackPOS, a crude but effective piece of software that contained malware scripts with Russian origins.

"The use of malware to compromise payment information storage systems is not new," the report said. "However, it is the first time we have seen this attack at this scale and sophistication."

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