Ford Surges in China and GE Picked to Power ViaWest Data Centers

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is continuing to hover just above 16,000 mark today, up 0.09% in early afternoon trading. The U.S. Conference Board released a report Monday showing multiple labor-market indicators rebounded in November, pushing the Employment Trends Index to its highest level in more than five years. The Conference Board said the index rose from 113.64 in October to 115.21 in November -- a 5.3% improvement from a year ago. With that in mind, here are some companies making headlines today.

General Electric is one of the biggest winners, trading 1.1% higher. The company announced some good news for its power business today, noting that ViaWest has selected General Electric's electrical distribution systems to power several of its innovative data centers.

"GE's combination of highly reliable equipment, speed to market and financing options make them an ideal partner to help fuel the growth of our innovative data centers," Dave Leonard, ViaWest chief data center officer, said in a press release. "GE worked closely with our design engineers from the project's inception to completion to ensure we had best-in-class electrical distribution system solutions to meet our needs."

This deal will add to General Electric's strong industrial solutions portfolio, which has remained a focus for the company after it announced plans to exit the North America retail finance business over the next two years. General Electric will rely on its power infrastructure market to be the backbone of growth going forward.

Ford's 2015 Mustang. Photo credit: Ford.

Outside the Dow, Ford released its sales figures in China late last week, and the numbers were good. Ford China sold nearly 100,000 vehicles in November, which was a solid 47% improvement from a year ago. It's year-to-date sales have also increased 51% to slightly more than 840,000 vehicles.

One vehicle having great success in China is Ford's Focus, with more than 350,000 sales this year. Focus was the best-selling nameplate in China in 2012 and Ford continues to have global success with its smaller vehicles. 

"We've really hit our stride in China this year," said Ford China Chairman and CEO John Lawler in a press release. "From performance vehicles, and SUVs, to sedans and commercial vehicles, we continue to expand the full family of vehicles in China that customers want and value."

While archrival General Motors has a significant market share lead in China, Ford plans to catch up as soon as possible. The recently unveiled 2015 Mustang will join its company lineup and sell overseas for the first time ever. It will be one of 15 new vehicles that Ford is launching in China by 2015 in its goal to double its market share from 3% to 6%. Ford owns a 4.3% market share in China, which is far behind General Motors' 14.6% as of the third quarter.

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Fool contributor Daniel Miller owns shares of Ford. The Motley Fool recommends Ford. The Motley Fool owns shares of Ford and General Electric Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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