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Business

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Trailer firmto expand Angola plant

Rockwell American is investing more than $325,000 over the next four years to expand its Angola sales and distribution facility as it creates up to 16 jobs by 2017, Steuben County officials announced Tuesday.

New machinery will allow the company to add recreational vehicle and trailer fenders to its trailer-parts product line.

Rockwell American now employs five in Angola. The company's four production plants are in Texas, Florida and California.

At its meeting Monday, the Angola City Council approved a tax abatement for the Azle, Texas, company's planned investment. The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has offered Quality Trailer Products LP – doing business as Rockwell American – up to $60,000 in conditional tax credits and up to $40,000 in training grants based on hiring plans.

Northeast Indiana Works has also promised to provide recruitment, screening and training services to the employer.

Top shipping firmlifts profit outlook

The world's largest shipping company says it is sending more containers around the world, a sign that global trade – and possibly economic growth – is picking up.

A.P. Moller-Maersk, which investors monitor as a bellwether for world trade, lifted Tuesday its earnings outlook on the back of an increase in freight volumes, a promising development at a time when a major economy like China is slowing and much of Europe remains stagnant.

The Danish group said shipping volumes rose 6.6 percent in the second quarter, one of several factors that caused its net profit to more than triple to $2.3 billion.

Home Depot salessurge 14 percent

Home Depot's fiscal second-quarter net income surged 14 percent thanks to a rebound in its spring selling season.

The nation's largest home improvement retailer also raised its annual profit guidance Tuesday.

Spring is the biggest season for home-improvement retailers, as homeowners and others work on their yards and gardens. While the season started off a bit cold and rainy, weather improved and shoppers headed out to stores to pick up supplies. In particular, purchases over $900 like appliances and water heaters, which account for 20 percent of total U.S. sales, rose 8 percent.

Mining giant plans to create spinoff

BHP Billiton, the world's biggest miner, has announced plans to split off some of its smaller assets into a separate company.

The company's announcement on Tuesday came as it posted a $13.8 billion annual profit.

BHP said the restructure will allow it to focus on its core iron ore, copper, coal, petroleum and potash businesses.

The new company will include some of BHP's aluminum, nickel, manganese, silver and coal assets, spread across five countries. It will be based in Perth, Australia, and listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, with a secondary listing in South Africa.

The proposed split is subject to regulatory approvals and will be put before shareholders for a vote. The spinoff is expected to be completed in the first half of 2015.

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