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Self-driving cars: ‘A vaccine that can save lives’

BBC -- If road accidents were a disease, it would be one of epidemic proportions; 1.2 million people die on the roads every year, almost as many as those who pass away from diabetes complications. And for Larry Burns, a professor of engineering at the University of Michigan, robot cars could be the cure for one of the world’s biggest causes of deaths.

Speaking after a panel discussion at the BBC Future World-Changing Ideas Summit in New York on 21 October, Burns said that the first designs for driverless, autonomous cars could be ready to roll out onto the roads as early as 2017. The main problem is that the world is not quite ready to accept them – due to issues over liability, regulation or just the fact that people aren’t yet ready to accept a car driving them to their destination.  (go to article)

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Kuwait urges Gulf reforms as oil prices fall

AFP -- Kuwait's finance minister on Saturday called for economic reforms by energy-dependent Gulf states to cope with a drop in oil prices that has hurt their public finances.

Anas al-Saleh urged steps to tackle rising public spending, mainly on wages and subsidies, as well as efforts to boost the role of the private sector.
 (go to article)

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Gas at its lowest price in nearly 4 years

Tri-County Times -- Gas prices go up, gas prices go down. The roller coaster ride of the gas pumps has left many people wondering why.

No, it’s not because of Ebola, or ISIS, or the upcoming election, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com.

While the actual reason for the gas price fluctuations are difficult to determine, GasBuddy.com says it has to do with seasonal price fluctuations and supply-and-demand changes, as well as price wars between some members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting

Countries (OPEC) and concerns about the global health of the economy.

As of Monday, Oct. 20, retail gas prices in Flint averaged $3.13 per gallon, having risen 10.9 cents in the past week, according to GasBuddy.com. This compares with the national average that has fallen 6.1 cents per gallon in the  (go to article)

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Man (passenger) Records Erratic Driver Before Dramatic Crash

Keystone Report - 6ABC -- MCCLELLANDTOWN, PA (WPVI) --
Two men driving in Fayette County, PA noticed a driver in front of them swerving all over the road. The passenger then grabbed his cell phone and started recording.

It didn't take long for that camera to capture a three vehicle crash.  (go to article)

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What Will The Cars of 2064 Be Like?

Gas2 -- Fifty years ago, automotive designers tried to envision what the cars of the early 21st century would look like. What we got were all manner of bubbletop, turbine-powered, and sometimes even nuclear automobiles.

While none of these innovations ever made it off the concept car circuit, other ideas, such as electronic fuel injection and airbags, have become commonplace in today’s vehicles. So what might the cars of
 (go to article)

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GM Tech Center flood damage cost $132 million

Detroit Free Press -- The August flooding that caused extensive damage and displaced 19,000 workers at General Motors' Warren Tech Center cost $132 million, although some of that is insured.

GM disclosed the bill for the flood damage in a footnote to its third-quarter earnings.

"We are insured," said GM spokesman Tom Henderson in an email. "Any recoveries would be reflected in future earnings reports."
 (go to article)

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Manufacturer halts sales of highway guardrails

Houston Chronicle -- A Texas company is stopping shipments of a common highway-guardrail system and conducting more crash tests after it lost a $175 million jury verdict.

Trinity Industries said Friday that it would stop selling the ET-Plus system until testing is complete.

Earlier this week, a jury in federal district court in Marshall, Texas, decided that Trinity should pay at least $175 million for misleading regulators. A whistle-blower charged that the company changed the design of caps that go on the ends of the guardrails but didn't tell regulators until several years later. A judge could triple the jury's verdict. Trinity criticized the decision and hinted that it would appeal.

Critics say that when vehicles strike the guardrail ends, guardrails don't crumple as they should, but instead become spear  (go to article)

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Electric cars offer a lot of bang for your buck

Detroit Free Press -- Drivers have never had so many choices when it comes to alternative fuel technology. Below is a comparison of some of the cheapest vehicles to operate using various fuels. Each vehicle model has its pluses and minuses.  (go to article)

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How China is scoring cheap oil 14,000 miles away as the global glut deepens

Bloomberg News -- China is finding oil supplies 14,000 mi away, aided by the global rout in prices that’s left producers vying for new markets

PetroChina bought Colombian crude for the first time because it was good value. The transaction underscores how the world’s 2nd-biggest oil consumer is benefiting as producers from the Middle E to L Am vie for customers in Asia

China consumed the 2nd-biggest amount of crude on record in Sep

The country’s crude imports rose 7.8% to 6.74Mbpd, in Sep from last yr

The number of supertankers sailing toward China’s ports surged to a 9-month high last week

Shipments from Saudi Arabia, its biggest supplier, shrank about 11%

Refiners including PetroChina processed 10.3Mbpd, up 9.1% from a yr earlier

The U.S. imported 7.62Mbpd in Jul, 29% less than the peak in Jun 2005  (go to article)

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White House Will Review Auto Safety Regulator

NY Times -- Concerned about safety lapses by the country’s top auto regulator, the Obama administration is undertaking a comprehensive review of the agency.  (go to article)

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Ford rejects pitch for proposed $1.5B-plus investment in Windsor plants, union boss says

Postmedia News -- Ford Motor Co. has decided against awarding a new engine program to its Windsor plants, which could have created up to 1,000 additional jobs, Chris Taylor, president of Unifor Local 200, said Friday.

“At this point we are not being sourced any new product; the product is not going to be awarded to Windsor,” said a disheartened Taylor. “It’s very, very devastating news for our members and our community.”
 (go to article)

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Dangerously defective air bags raise questions about automakers’ ability to handle gigantic recall

Washington Post -- Federal safety authorities have recalled only 7.8 million vehicles over the defect in a few states, a limited action that lawmakers said Thursday was vastly insufficient to address what they deemed “a public safety threat.”  (go to article)

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100 Banned Louisiana plates

KSLA -- Try as they might, many motorists could not outsmart officials at the Louisiana Department of Motor Vehicles.

With help from our partners at WRNO, we have pieced together 100 banned Louisiana vanity plates.

**Warning: Some viewers may find these plates somewhat offensive.**

Mobile user? Click here to view the full slideshow: http://bit.ly/YNFrKI

Copyright 2014 WVUE. All rights reserved.  (go to article)

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Signs positive for Jeep Wrangler to remain in Toledo

Detroit News -- The uproar over Jeep Wrangler production possibly moving out of Toledo during the last several weeks may have been premature.

The next-generation of the popular sport utility vehicle will reportedly continue being produced using its current body-on-frame manufacturing process, thus remaining compatible with its current Toledo Assembly Complex home and likely staying in the city, Automotive News reported this week via unnamed sources.

Jeep spokesman Todd Goyer would not confirm nor deny the decision, saying the company does not comment on future product plans. He simply said “it will be the most capable Wrangler ever.”

The Toledo mayor’s office, which met with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne earlier this month to discuss Wrangler production, said officials are continuing  (go to article)

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Internet car radio poses bigger threat for local AM-FM

Detroit News -- Twenty-five years ago, carmakers decorated their auto exteriors with eye-catching wood trim. Today, the wood is on the inside, complementing flashy center consoles with seven-inch, digital touch screens.

The car dashboard is being transformed and it's taking AM-FM radio with it.

Just as it did newspapers and broadcast television, the Internet revolution is roiling the local broadcast landscape that has long held a monopoly on the car radio.

With center console infotainment systems, the in-car landscape has undergone a seismic shift started by satellite radio two decades ago and accelerated by Internet players like Pandora, Spotify, and iHeartRadio.

Now, AM-FM stations face a tipping point as Apple CarPlay, Google's Android Auto, and in-car Wi-Fi hot spots fundamentally change the user  (go to article)

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Pay-by-the-mile driving? Idea resurfaces in Colorado election campaigns

Denver Business Journal -- Long a buzzword among policy wonks and transportation planners, the idea of creating a vehicle-miles-traveled fee to supplement or replace the gasoline tax has surfaced again in both federal and statewide political races in Colorado.

The VMT fee would measure the distance traveled by a car or truck and charge the vehicle owner accordingly in order to raise money for road repairs and highway-building.

It's an idea that cuts across party lines. Democrats and Republicans who back it say that it could be an equitable substitute for state and federal gas taxes that bring in diminishing returns as more alternative-fuel and fuel-efficient vehicles populate the roads, while opponents from both parties argue that devices used to track such mileage are an intrusion on drivers' liberties.  (go to article)

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Falling gas prices make hybrids & EVs less attractive

GasBuddy Blog -- You probably saw this coming...

Hybrids, EVs and other alternative-fuel vehicles don't sell well when gas prices are falling.Tanner Hulette, general manager of Mechanicsville Toyota near Richmond, Va., said he's seeing higher demand for pickups and SUVs, and less interest in the Prius hybrid. The store's year-to-date light-truck sales are up 5 percent while car sales are down 5 percent. And gas near him is as low as $2.70. "The floor traffic is dictated by what's going on with fuel," Hulette said. "If we didn't have SUVs and light trucks right now we'd definitely be feeling some pain."...  (go to article)

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Weak Q3 a 'pit stop' for Ford as major product roll-out continues

MLive -- Global wholesales are expected to continue to be slow for Ford in October but will pick up toward the end of the year, as the company continues to roll-out a slew of new products.

That was the message from the Dearborn automaker's executives in a conference call with analysts and the media Friday to discuss the company's third quarter results, which included a 3 percent decrease in wholesales, a 2 percent drop in revenue and a 34 percent decline in net profit.

"It's not a pause in our sales growth, it's a pit stop," Ford president and CEO Mark Fields said. While acknowledging that the quarter was "challenging," Fields also noted that the company launched three times as many products as it had during the year-ago quarter.

In the latest quarter, Ford began production of the all-new,...  (go to article)

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Gas prices are tumbling, but that’s not necessarily a good thing

Washington Post -- The fall in oil prices to their lowest point since 2010 makes clear that a new era for world oil is at hand – one defined by the continuing surge in U.S. production. This is a big contrast with the era – now over – that began a decade ago, when the most important factor was the dramatic increase in the oil demand of rapidly growing China.

This growth in U.S. tight oil — a light crude that is trapped in dense, hard-to-reach rock — has come on fast. It only really got going around 2008, launched by advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking — the same technology that created the shale gas boom. The results have outstripped expectations, with U.S. crude oil output jumping 80 percent in just six years. That increase — almost 4 million barrels per day — is greater th  (go to article)

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Average gas price in Ohio drops below $3 for the first time since 2010

Fox Business -- COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio's average gas price has dropped below $3 for the first time in nearly four years.

A gallon of regular gasoline in Ohio averaged $2.99 Friday, according to auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and WEX Inc. The last time Ohio's average gas price dropped below $3 was on Dec. 10, 2010.

AAA says it's typical for gas prices to drop during the last months of the year, but other factors have helped bring prices down. The auto group also attributes the falling gas prices to lower crude oil prices at home and abroad, an increase in U.S. refineries' crude oil supplies to make gasoline and a quiet hurricane season along the eastern coastline.

AAA expects gas prices to remain low through the end of the year.  (go to article)

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The promise of LNG has B.C.’s Northwest buzzing

THE VANCOUVER SUN (VIDEO) -- In Kitimat, the streets are busy — the town full of activity, heady with anticipation.

Also a little apprehension.

At the entrance of town, across the highway from the chamber of commerce office, a new subdivision is under construction.

The two LNG plants — one led by Chevron (Kitimat LNG) and the other by Shell (LNG Canada) — will cost more than $20 billion. The pipelines that would supply the plants will add billions more to the price tag.

And while much of the money will be spent on the plant equipment, pipe and other supplies far from Kitimat, money will also be spent locally on workers, construction materials and fast-food outlets.

Kitimat has already tasted the effects of an industrial construction boom. The workforce for Rio Tinto’s $4.8-billion modernization of its aluminum...  (go to article)

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‘Full credit or blame’ on gas prices

MSNBC -- It was just a couple of years ago that Republicans positioned gas prices one of the nation’s most important political issues. Mitt Romney, during his failed presidential bid, argued President Obama “gets full credit or blame for what’s happened in this economy, and what’s happened to gasoline prices under his watch.”

The argument was always a little silly. Gas prices were extremely low when Obama first took office in early 2009 because there was a global economic crisis underway, weakening demand and pushing prices at the pump much lower. Consumers were paying more in 2012 than 2009, but that was because the economy had recovered.

But if Romney was correct, and the president deserves “full credit” for the price of gas, Republicans must be awfully impressed with Obama right now.  (go to article)

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Dayton signs order easing propane rules to try to head off shortage

Pioneer Press -- Gov. Mark Dayton has temporarily lifted some rules governing the transport of propane.

Dayton signed an executive order Friday that allows propane delivery drivers a longer daily window to transport the product. They would still face limits on the amount of time they can spend behind the wheel. The order is similar to ones he's signed in the past to combat distribution shortages. Last year, propane shortages drove up heating costs.

Because of late planting and harvesting, propane is in higher demand as farmers work to dry their crops.  (go to article)

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Ford picks Mexico over Windsor for engine plant, union says

CBC News -- Ford Motor Co. has decided to build its new engine in Mexico after it was unable to reach a deal with the federal and Ontario governments to bring the investment to Windsor, Ont., Unifor said Friday.
Both levels of government suggested that they would not provide public money for the project because the automaker wouldn't make certain job and economic commitments.
In a news release, Unifor said it had hoped that months of discussions between Ford, two levels of government and the union would result in "significant investment which would have secured the production of a global engine at the Windsor facility."
It has been confirmed that the global engine will be built in Mexico,  (go to article)

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U.S. Gas Prices Will Not Rise on Lifting Crude Export Ban - study

Reuters via Downstream Today -- A highly anticipated study by the U.S. Energy Information Administration will show that domestic oil prices will not rise if the U.S. ban on oil exports is lifted, the agency's top administrator said Thursday.

Domestic gasoline prices are set in the global market, and the price of U.S. gasoline is tied more closely to the global benchmark price than WTI, the U.S. benchmark, EIA administrator Adam Sieminski said.

"If you allowed the ban to be lifted, WTI prices could indeed go up, but it probably wouldn't do a great deal one way or the other with gasoline prices,' Sieminski said.

Sieminski, a former chief energy economist for Deutsche Bank, made the comments while taking questions about  (go to article)

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Reminders to keep your vehicle safe on Halloween

GasBuddy Blog -- With Halloween approaching, it's a good time to remind drivers of how to protect their vehicles and assets from thieves this holiday season. Historically, more cars have been stolen on Halloween than any of the other major holidays, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau's 2012 Holiday Theft Report. According to the report, on average more than 2,300 vehicles fall victim to theft on October 31st each year.You can use these simple tricks to keep robbers from making a treat out of your vehicle this Halloween:

-Don't leave your car in unfamiliar locations overnight. If you're planning on attending a Halloween party at a bar or a friend's house, leave your car at home and take a cab to and from the event....  (go to article)

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2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Test Drive

foxnews.com -- This is just getting ridiculous.

Ridiculously awesome, that is.

The muscle car wars have a new heavyweight champion, the Dodge Challenger Hellcat.

The burly cruiser has been redesigned for 2015, and to celebrate, they stuffed the top-of-the-line model with 6.2-liters worth of supercharged V8 that pumps out an absurd 707 hp and is named for a WWII fighter plane. Deservedly so.

Never before has an American production car harnessed so many horses, and the only others in the world that do cost about five times the Challenger’s $60,990 price. That’s a big $15,000 jump from the next most powerful Challenger, the no-slouch 485 hp SRT 392, and indicative of just how special the Hellcat engine is.

Essentially an all-new motor, it has a 2.4-liter supercharger, two cooling systems, two . . .  (go to article)

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Study: Handheld phone enforcement doesn't cut crashes

Detroit News -- High enforcement of bans on hand-held driver phone use bans led to a drop in violations, but no decline in insurance claims for crashes, a study released Friday said.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety looked at claims after two high-profile federally funded enforcement efforts by local and state police in the Hartford, Connecticut, and Syracuse, New York between April 2010 and April 2011.  (go to article)

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Ford halts plan to create 1,000 jobs at Winsor engine plant

Global news -- Ford Motor Co. is nixing plans to award its Windsor engine assembly plant with a new investment program that would have created 1,000 jobs, according to union reps.  (go to article)

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Canadian oil producers Husky, Cenovus say price storm won’t derail growth plans

Financial Post -- Despite a bear market for oil, two of Canada’s largest producers said Tue their growth plans have not yet been derailed

“We are in the midst of volatile oil prices. We’ve taken several steps to weatherproof our business

Both companies reported production growth over the last quarter — and over the past 12 months. Husky grew production 2% Q2Q and 10% since this time last year. Cenovus’ total production was up 13% from the same Q last year

Cenovus plans to further expand its existing oil sands facilities are on track

Despite growing its production, Husky’s earnings missed analyst projections. The company’s net earnings slipped 9%

“Our philosophy is that times like these call for prudence and focus

Neither company would give a preview of their 2015 capital expenditure budgets, which are  (go to article)

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NC Prosecutor To Dismiss Speeding Tickets Because Of Radar Guns

Asheville Citizen Times -- An Asheville prosecutor will dismiss about 230 speeding tickets city police wrote using radar guns with out-of-date certifications.

District Attorney Ron Moore said he planned to file the dismissals on Thursday.

City police completed a review of 4,500 tickets on Oct. 17. Officers found about 2,000 had been issued base on speed measuring devices, such as radar guns. Of that amount, 336 came from devices with lapsed certifications.
 (go to article)

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Saudi Arabia's Risky Oil-Price Play

Bloomberg Business Week -- With the U.S. on track to become the world’s largest oil producer by next year, it’s become popular in Washington and on Wall Street to call America the new Saudi Arabia. Yet the real Saudi Arabia hasn’t relinquished its role as the producer with the most influence over oil prices. Its reserves of 266 billion barrels, ability to pump as many as 12.5 million barrels a day, and, most important, its low cost of extracting crude still make it a formidable rival to the U.S., whose shale wells are hard to exploit.  (go to article)

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Are Low Gas Prices a good sign

NPR -- All around the country, gasoline prices have been falling for weeks, down to an average of about $3 a gallon. Those lower prices are helping restrain inflation across the board.

On Wednesday, the Labor Department said its consumer price index barely inched up 0.1 percent last month. Over the past 12 months, the CPI has risen by 1.7 percent, roughly half of its historical average rate of increase.

That sounds great for consumers.

But some economists see possible trouble ahead. They worry that if energy prices were to keep sliding, the process could contribute to deflation — a brutal cycle of falling prices last seen in this country during the Great Depression of the 1930s.  (go to article)

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Where Are Oil Prices Headed Next?

Fox Business -- Oil prices tried to overcome a huge 7.1 million barrel increase in oil supply but could not in the face of another act of terror and fears of declining demand.

US oil production is showing no signs of slowing as production surged above 9 million barrel per day. This comes as refiners struggled as maintence and refining glitch’s dropped refining runs to a disappointed low 86.7%. Still gas production increased to 9.3 million barrels a day which exceeded the four weak daily demand number of 8.8 million barrels a day which is 2% less than a year ago.
 (go to article)

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Future Oil Prices Drop again

Bloomberg News -- “The Saudis increased production, so there is no signal that they’ve changed their behavior with an eye on pushing prices back up,” Bjarne Schieldrop, chief commodity analyst in Oslo at SEB AB, said by phone. “The Ebola case in New York could also spark fears that restrictions will be put on international flights, potentially hurting jet fuel demand.”

WTI for December delivery dropped as much as 1.09 cents to $81 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $81.05 at 1:42 p.m. London time.  (go to article)

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Ford Q3 net income of $835M on $1.2B pre-tax profit

USA Today -- Ford Motor said it had pre-tax profit of $1.2 billion the quarter and net income of $835 million.,

The pre-tax number was less than half the $2.6 billion a year earlier. The net was well off the year-ago net of $1.27 billion.

Shortly after the 7 a.m. announcement, Ford shares traded at $14.61, down from the pre-opening high of $14.86.

Ford affirmed the full-year pre-tax profit forecast of $6 billoin that it provided investment analysts Sept. 29. That's down from a range of $7 billion to $8 billion that Ford gave earlier in the year.

Last month Ford warned investors that its record number of launches this year is cutting into profit margins in North America. And it said losses will be greater than anticipated in Europe at $1.2 billion.  (go to article)

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U.S. Oil Seen as Buffer for Global Prices and Supply

Bloomberg -- U.S. oil output is buffering global crude prices and critical to the world’s supply balance amid the threat of disruptions, even as a ban on domestic exports remains in place, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said.

A surge in the nation’s oil output comes as markets are faced with near-historic highs of unanticipated outages, Moniz, 69, said at a talk organized by the public-affairs forum Commonwealth Club in San Francisco yesterday. He agreed with a government report finding U.S. gasoline prices may drop should the prohibition on crude exports be lifted.

Moniz is leading the Energy Department through an unprecedented boom in U.S. fuel production. The nation’s oil output has jumped to a 28-year high and natural gas supplies have increased by so much companies are building terminals ...  (go to article)

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Kelley Blue Book says new car purchasing is a 'bumpier road' for women

GasBuddy Blog -- When it comes to car shopping, women are driven by features – engaging in extensive research to find the best fit – while from the outset many men are revved about a particular car brand, according to a study just released by Kelley Blue Book www.kbb.com, the only vehicle valuation and information source trusted and relied upon by both consumers and the automotive industry.           One-in-five men know the exact vehicle he wants, while women are twice as likely to be undecided about what vehicle they desire, the study revealed. Additionally, 58 percent of men are confident in the car-buying arena, versus 38 percent of women. As a result, women take longer to make a purchase (a median of 75 days, compared with men’s 63 days), because they are spending more time than men doing research in an effort to build confidence and knowledge. ...  (go to article)

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Gas Prices Just Hit a Low for 2014

Money Brad Tuttle -- Around the country, drivers are paying the lowest prices of the year for gas.
Gas prices
More

$3 Per Gallon Gas, Here We Come

The summertime swoon for gas prices has continued into fall, and now it looks like the forecasts calling for lower and lower prices at the pump are right on track.

Earlier this week, AAA noted that the national average for a gallon of regular stood at $3.29
and that we were on the brink of matching the cheapest mark thus far in 2014 ($3.27, hit on February 9). Well, as of Wednesday, AAA data indicated the national average hit $3.267, a new low for the year.  (go to article)

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The World's New Biggest Ship? Maybe. Niftiest Ship? For Sure

BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEK -- What’s most impressive about the Pieter Schelte isn’t its size, though, it’s what the megaship can do.

The Pieter Schelte is a cross between a ship and a giant very dexterous robot. Its job is partly to lay undersea pipelines for oil and gas and partly to install and remove offshore drilling platforms. All of this means that platforms can be built onshore then delivered to their location; when they’re no longer needed they can be taken to a new location or brought back to shore for disassembly.

To that end it has eight arms on its bow that can clamp to the supporting struts of an oil platform, holding it perfectly still even in 11-foot waves, using its “active motion compensation system.” Its massive lift system can pop an oil platform off its supports as if picking a 48,000-ton flower.  (go to article)

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Islamic State was making $1 million a day from oil sales before airstrikes began

The Washington Post (VIDEO) -- The Islamic State sells oil from territory it controls in Syria and Iraq to Turkish middlemen, Iraqi Kurds and even the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad, according to the Obama administration’s point man on terrorist financing.

Before the United States began targeting refineries in militant-occupied areas of Syria last month, the Islamic State was making about $1 million a day from oil sales, Treasury Department Undersecretary David S. Cohen said Thursday.

Its total income of “millions of dollars per month” from oil kidnapping ransom and extortion in occupied areas and the speed with which it has amassed funds, make the Islamic State unlike any other terrorist entity the United States has confronted, Cohen said.

The group also differs from other organizations, including...  (go to article)

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South Central Ohio gas prices down four cents

Jackson County Daily -- South Central Ohio gas prices fell four cents to $3.093 a gallon, according to AAA East Central’s Fuel Gauge Report.

This week’s South Central Ohio average price: $ 3.093.

Average price during the week of Oct. 14, 2014: $ 3.136.

Average price during the week of Oct. 22, 2013: $ 3.409.

The average price for unleaded regular gasoline in Ohio is $3.044.

On the National Front

Today’s national average price for regular unleaded gasoline is $3.09 per gallon. This is a dime less than one week ago, 25 cents less than one month ago and 26 cents less than one year ago. Drivers are saving an average of 61 cents per gallon compared to the 2014 high of $3.70 (set on April 28).  (go to article)

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A World Without OPEC?

The New York Times -- Forty-one years ago this month, the Arab oil embargo began. The countries that were part of it belonged, of course, to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries — OPEC — which had banded together 13 years earlier to strengthen their ability to negotiate with international oil companies. The embargo led to widespread shortages in the United States, higher prices at the gas pump and long lines at gas stations. By the time it ended, the price of oil had risen to $12 a barrel from $3.

Perhaps more important than the price increases themselves was the new world order the embargo signaled. The embargo “set in motion geopolitical circumstances that eventually allowed [OPEC] to wrest control over global oil production and pricing from the giant international oil companies — ushering in  (go to article)

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Syrian Regime, Iraqi Kurds Among Those Buying ISIS Oil: Official

NBC News -- ISIS makes its fortune by selling oil from seized territory to its enemies, including the Syrian government it has vowed to topple and to Kurds in Iraq, a U.S. official said Thursday.

The official, Undersecretary David Cohen of the Treasury Department, is in charge of cracking down on ISIS finances. In remarks prepared for a speech to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, he said that ISIS “has amassed wealth at an unprecedented pace.”

Unlike al Qaeda, he said, ISIS gets only a small share of its money from deep-pocketed donors. It relies mostly on black-market oil sales, extortion and ransom payments, Cohen said. Estimates of how much ISIS makes selling oil have varied widely, but it is believed to be at least $1 million a day.

ISIS, which controls oil refineries in the vast  (go to article)

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BP, Chevron strike oil at major deepwater Gulf of Mexico prospect site

New Orleans Times-Picayune -- Chevron and BP have hit oil at a key exploration site in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. This is BP's second major discovery in the deepwater Gulf since the 2010 oil spill.

The discovery, known as Guadalupe, is in the Keathley Canyon region of the Gulf of Mexico about 300 miles southwest of New Orleans in nearly 4,000 feet of water.

The Guadalupe prospect targets oil in a Paleogene-era layer of sand more than 30,000 feet under the ocean floor. Chevron and BP did not say how much oil they estimate is in the reservoir.

Chevron and BP each own a 42.5 percent share in the well. Venari Resources, a Texas oil and gas exploration company focused on the deepwater Gulf, owns the remaining share.

Chevron Corp. Vice C  (go to article)

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NHTSA apologizes for botched air bag warnings

CNBC -- The nation's top automotive safety official has issued an apology regarding the issuance of incorrect information about the number of vehicles equipped with faulty Takata air bags, which left motorists scrambling for answers earlier this week.  (go to article)

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Saudi Arabia’s Crude Oil Supply Said to Fall in September

bloomberg.com -- The amount of oil Saudi Arabia supplied to markets fell last month, according to a person familiar with the country’s oil policy. Its production climbed.

The world’s biggest crude exporter supplied 9.36 million barrels a day last month, a reduction of 328,000 barrels daily from August, according to the person, who asked not to be identified, citing policy. The supply figure excludes what’s stored. Saudi Arabia produced about 100,000 barrels a day more than in August, the person said.

Crude collapsed into a bear market this month as Saudi Arabia and other producers deepened price discounts for their oil, amid speculation they’re competing for market share in Asia. Global supplies are rising as the U.S. pumps the most in almost three decades and Russia’s output nears a post-Soviet record.  (go to article)

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Honda Air-Bag Deaths Draw Congress Query as Recalls Widen

Bloomberg -- The congressional investigators who dug into fatal defects in General Motors Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. cars are now asking U.S. safety regulators to brief them about potentially deadly air bags.  (go to article)

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Wind energy is dominating Michigan's investment in renewable energy

MLIVE -- GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Wind energy is generating most of the dollars being invested in renewable energy in Michigan, according to a study released by the Pew Charitable Trust on Thursday, Oct. 23.

More than $2 billion was invested in renewable energy between 2009 and 2013, according to the study, which examined the impact of Michigan’s 2008 Clean, Renewable, and Efficient Energy Act, which required state utilities to produce 10 percent of their power via renewable energy.  (go to article)

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GM posts higher-than-expected profit on strong North American demand

Reuters -- General Motors Co (GM.N) on Thursday reported a higher-than-expected profit in the third quarter on strong demand for its redesigned full-size pickup trucks in North America.

"Clearly, high transaction prices - the new trucks and SUVs are more profitable than the ones they replace - that certainly helps," GM Chief Financial Officer Chuck Stevens said at the company's Detroit headquarters.

The positive results provided a respite from the drumbeat of negative news this year surrounding faulty ignition switches that led to massive recalls and have been blamed for at least 29 deaths.
Shares in the No. 1 U.S. automaker were off 13 cents at $31.18 in midday trade.
Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas lauded GM's "Audi-style" profit margins in North America that approach German luxury levels. Ho  (go to article)

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Tribal leaders testify against Canada pipeline

Associated Press -- SEATTLE (AP) - U.S. tribes told Canadian regulators on Wednesday they're opposed to a proposed pipeline expansion project..which
could increase by seven-fold the number of oil tankers that transit Washington state waters.

The risk of oil spills with devastating consequences for tribes' way of life, culture and the environment, as well as their U.S. treaty right to fish, they said.

"It's not if, but when, one of these tankers run aground somewhere," said Brian Cladoosby, chairman of the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community near Anacorte  (go to article)

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