Paw Print Rewind #004: April 19th, 2015

Editor’s Note: This is the Paw Print Rewind, a daily recap of the top news headlines.

Ford to spend $2.5 billion on Mexico plants

Ford will spend $2.5 billion to build a new generation of fuel-efficient engines and transmissions in Mexico, creating 3,800 jobs.

The company will build a new engine facility within its engine plant in the northern state of Chihuahua, according to Ford. The facility will build a new gasoline engine that gets exported to the United States, Canada, South America, and the Asia-Pacific.

Production of Ford’s I-4 and diesel engines at the Chihuahua plant will also be expanded, making it Mexico’s biggest engine plant.

It will also build a transmission plant in the central state of Guanajuato, according to the company, in partnership with German transmission maker Getrag.

U.S. consumer prices up slightly

U.S. consumer prices increased for a second straight month in March on rising gasoline and housing costs.

“The data should allay the disinflation concerns that predominated earlier this year and, on the margin, increase the Fed’s confidence that inflation will eventually move toward its target.”

-Michelle Girade, RBS chief economist

On Friday, the Labor Department reported Consumer Price Index gains of 0.2 percent last month after a similar February increase. In the year through March, the CPI slipped 0.1 percent after being unchanged in February.

The core CPI, which strips out food and energy costs, increased 0.2 percent in March after a similar February rise. In the year through March, the core CPI rose 1.8 percent for the largest increase since October.

“This report helps to increase policymakers’ confidence, but we also need to see further improvement in the labor market. We are very comfortable with our call for a September liftoff.”

-Laura Rosner, BNP Paribas economist

“The positive momentum is purchasing sentiment suggests consumption should rebound in the second and third quarters of this year and support overall growth in 2015.”

-Jesse Hurwitz, Barclays economist

GM counting on high-speed Internet services in-car to drive profits

GM vehicle owners will soon be able to use in-car mobile broadband systems to book a hotel room, cut deals on driver insurance, pay for data usage and conduct a hose of other transactions.

Each time they do, General Motors will get a small cut from the seller.

When the automaker began offering 4G LTE wireless connections in some cars last year, it wasn’t clear how it would generate revenue to offset hardware costs. Now, GM is lifting its 4G business strategy.

GM expects to reap at least $350 million in profits over the next three years from adding OnStar’s 4G systems to its vehicles, according to company executives.

“There’s an under-appreciation of what OnStar is morphing into with 4G LTE.”

-Itay Michaeli, Citi analyst

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