In the news for Monday: Walmart's Asia CEO says better supplier monitoring is key to preventing future tragedies, United Technologies cancels planned furloughs, Darling bids for Vion Ingredients, Alcoa is preparing its first earnings announcement since being dropped from the Dow and Consol Energy reports on the death of a miner at a West Virginia facility.
The CEO of Walmart's (WMT) Asian operations said the key to preventing disasters like the April collapse of the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh, is in oversight of suppliers by retail firms. Scott Price said the collapse, which killed 1,129 people, lead the company to increase oversight to prevent unauthorized subcontracting. He said the company has gone as far to use thermal imaging to inspect buildings to make sure they are safe.
Defense contractor United Technologies (UTX) canceled the planned furloughs of 2,000 workers after the Department of Defense recalled most of its civilian employees. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the majority of the DoD's 350,000 furloughed workers back to their jobs on Saturday under a law exempting them from a shutdown if they are contributing to a government shutdown or military morale.
Food recycler Darling International (DAR) will buy Netherlands-based Vion Ingredients for about $2.17 billion. Vion makes products for the pharmaceutical, food, feed, pet food, fertilizer and bio-energy industries. It had 2012 revenue of about $2.17 billion.
Aluminum producer Alcoa (AA) is scheduled to start earnings season after the market closes on Tuesday. Analysts currently expect the company to earn 5 cents per share on $5.66 billion in revenue. The company was recently removed from the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which may remove some of the company's status as a bellwether, but analysts will likely be paying close attention to the company's earnings report for any comments about demand for or the price of aluminum.
Coal-miner Consol Energy (CNX) said Friday evening that 62-year-old Roger King, a senior longwall maintenance coordinator, died after suffering a head injury in the company's McElroy mine in Marshall County, W. Va. The nature of the accident was unclear, but King reportedly died on the way to the hospital.