KRWG

Business

Please note: Sometimes, NPR publishes headlines before the story and/or audio is ready; check back for content later if this occurs. We also publish national/world news on our home page from AP, BBC, and others.

Dippin' Dots describes its product as "an unconventional ice cream treat that's remarkably fresh and flavorful, introducing the world to beaded ice cream" and "the original and unbeatable flash-frozen ice cream sensation." Donald Trump's press secretary, Sean Spicer, disagrees. For years, he has mocked the company and its "ice cream of the future" on Twitter.

President Trump is now filing the documents needed to remove his name as top executive at his companies, finally making good on a promise to leave management by Inauguration Day.

Ajit Pai, the senior Republican on the Federal Communications Commission, will be the country's new chief telecommunications regulator. He's a proponent of limited government and a free-market approach to regulations.

Pai's promotion within the FCC under the administration was long rumored and confirmed on Monday by his office. In a statement, Pai said he looked forward "to working with the new Administration, my colleagues at the Commission, members of Congress, and the American public to bring the benefits of the digital age to all Americans."

A federal judge has ruled against the proposed acquisition of the health insurance company Humana by its larger rival, Aetna.

The decision is a victory for former President Obama's Justice Department, which sued Aetna last year to block the $34 billion merger, NPR's Yuki Noguchi reported.

The suit alleged that the merger would hurt competition in the health care market, leading to higher prices for consumers and fewer services for Medicare patients.

For a man with a mural of an oil refinery in his office, deciding to sue the oil and gas industry wasn't an easy choice.

But it was a necessary one for Guy McInnis, the president of Louisiana's St. Bernard Parish, just south of New Orleans.

On a recent day, McInnis stands overlooking Lake Borgne. Now an open lake, the area was once prime wetlands and marshlands that protected St. Bernard from storm surge. It took a big hit during Hurricane Katrina.

Oil companies would dig through the marshy area to get to their shallow water wells.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Today, a team of legal scholars and former government ethics officials filed suit in federal court alleging that President Trump's many business interests violate the constitution. We'll hear from one of those lawyers in a moment.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

False, fake, fabricated news - we'll look at the impact online fakery had on our recent election and what other countries are doing to prevent it from affecting theirs. It's All Tech Considered.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

A bit more than a decade ago, President George W. Bush's press secretary, Scott McClellan, found his credibility in tatters after it became clear he had misled reporters about the leaking of the name of a CIA operative.

Even though he arguably had been set up by less-than-forthright White House aides, McClellan resigned some months later.

Why? Establishing trust between the White House press secretary and the reporters he or she works with every day is critical.

Updated at 5:15 p.m. ET.

President Trump acted on Monday to keep a signature campaign promise: withdraw the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Trump's action is mostly symbolic.

As he signed the memorandum in the Oval Office, Trump said, "We've been talking about this for a long time," adding it's "a great thing for the American worker."

President Trump began his first full workweek in the White House by hosting a breakfast "listening session" with business executives. In his opening remarks, Trump largely stuck to traditional Republican themes of lower taxes and reduced regulation.

But he also reiterated his threat to impose a border tax on companies that move jobs overseas — a plan with little support from the president's fellow Republicans in Congress. Trump said he hopes to hold similar meetings with business leaders on a regular basis, perhaps quarterly.

Updated at 12 p.m. ET

A team of ethics experts and legal scholars filed a lawsuit in federal court Monday morning that says President Trump's overseas businesses violate the Constitution's Emoluments Clause, which bars presidents from taking money from foreign governments.

As congressional Republicans begin work on repealing the Affordable Care Act, many of the nation's governors want to make sure that their state budgets don't take a hit during the dismantling process.

They're most concerned about Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor that's run jointly by the states and federal government. As a result of a Supreme Court decision, states were allowed to decide whether they would expand Medicaid under the ACA; 14 million people have gained health insurance coverage through Medicaid since eligibility for the program was expanded.

Corporate Leader Brenda Barnes Dies At 63

Jan 21, 2017

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Brenda Barnes died on Tuesday at the age of 63. She was one of the highest-ranking women in corporate America when she chose to step down as president of PepsiCo North America in 1997 to be with her three children. She told NPR...

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

Hundreds of thousands of Americans are now working as contractors for the rapidly growing ride-hailing industry, specifically for the largest companies, Uber and Lyft. But a new survey, released this week, finds that Lyft, with its fluorescent pink mustache symbol, is more popular with drivers.

In the Central Valley, there's a bumper sticker you see all over the place. It's shaped like California, and reads "My job depends on Ag." In California, that agriculture depends on immigrant labor.

Many farmers in the state supported President Donald Trump despite his hard-line stance on immigration. So as the new Trump administration takes office, what's the thinking of those involved in the region's biggest industry?

Episode 749: Professor Blackjack

Jan 20, 2017

Ed Thorp was the first 'quant', the first person to make mathematical analysis and statistics the center of his investing. But he only got there because of a card game.

As a young man, Ed Thorp was a mathematician doing pretty much what you'd expect a mathematician to do: teaching, studying, trying to solve hard problems. There was one particular problem that nobody else had been able to solve. He wanted to come up with a mathematical system to beat the casino at blackjack.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

When the Watergate scandal blew up in the 1970s, one of the things to emerge from its shadow was the Office of Government Ethics. And OGE usually works quietly behind the scenes to make sure that people who run the country have no financial ties that could influence their work.

At its helm is a man named Walter Shaub Jr., a longtime ethics lawyer, who has been at OGE for a decade. And when you ask people about him, Shaub is described as careful, even-keeled, even kind of boring — a government lawyer.

The global money service company Western Union has admitted it helped people commit wire fraud, among other criminal violations, and agreed to pay $586 million.

The settlement is the result of an investigation that found Western Union was "willfully failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program," the Justice Department said in a statement.

Georgia Republican Tom Price, who is President-elect Trump's choice to run the Department of Health and Human Services, is suddenly drowning in questions over the investments he has made while serving in the House of Representatives.

On a chilly winter morning, dozens of truck driver trainees file into a classroom at the headquarters of Prime Inc., a trucking company based in Springfield, Mo.

At the front is Siphiwe Baleka, an energetic former swimming champion in his mid-40s. He delivers grim news about trucker health to the new recruits.

"If you haven't started to think about this, you need to start right now," Baleka says. "You are about to enter the most unhealthy occupation in America."

In a tense hearing Thursday morning, the new administration's Treasury secretary nominee, Steven Mnuchin, faced scrutiny from Democratic senators concerned about him profiting handsomely off homeowners who lost their homes during the housing crisis.

Why America Is Growing The Most Sweet Potatoes Since WWII

Jan 19, 2017

Sweet potatoes are undergoing a modern renaissance in this country.

While they have always made special appearances on many American tables around the holidays, year-round demand for the root vegetables has grown. In 2015, farmers produced more sweet potatoes than in any year since World War II.

War Effort

"A lot of things were hard to get during World War II, and potatoes were easier to raise than some of the other vegetables," my grandmother Joyce Heise tells me.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On Friday, when Donald Trump puts his hand on a Bible and takes the oath of office, ethics experts say he may very well be in violation of a lease on one of his premier hotels.

The Trump International Hotel is a grand dame of a building on Pennsylvania Avenue, just a stone's throw from the White House. It has become something of a tourist destination in Washington — and a rallying point for protesters — since Trump won the election. This week, they snarled traffic in front of the hotel, and one demonstrator suffered serious burns after trying to set a fire outside the building.

A 32-year career at Boeing comes to a close in April for engineer Dave Baine of suburban Seattle. Baine was already prepared to retire when Boeing sealed the deal by making him a buyout offer last week.

"It's better than a gold watch," he says. The deal is six months' pay in a lump sum and extended health insurance.

"It'll help the younger folks that want to stick around and help some of the older folks exit quickly and quietly," he says.

Pages