Business

The Two-Way
5:51 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Staples Says It's Buying Office Depot For $6.3 Billion

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 8:52 am

Nearly 20 years after an earlier proposed merger was rejected by U.S. regulators, Staples says it is acquiring Office Depot for $6.3 billion. Combined, the two office supply giants would have annual sales of some $39 billion.

"Staples began discussions to acquire Office Depot in September 2014," the companies said in a news release. "The agreement has been unanimously approved by each company's Board of Directors."

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All Tech Considered
5:03 am
Wed February 4, 2015

FCC Chairman Wheeler Backs Regulating Internet As Public Utility

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler unveiled his plan in a Wired op-ed on Wednesday. The FCC is scheduled to vote on the proposal Feb. 26.
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 5, 2015 8:48 am

Updated Feb. 4, 11:52 a.m. ET: Wheeler Outlines His Proposal In Wired.

Today is the day net neutrality watchers had been waiting for, according to numerous reports. After months of debate, discussion and the culling of nearly 4 million public comments on the matter, the Federal Communications Commission appears poised to decide how it will regulate the Internet.

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Environment
4:21 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Hard To Clean Up Wastewater Spills From Oil Wells Into N.D. Stream

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 5:40 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Business
4:07 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Demanding Higher Wages, Refinery Workers Strike Shell Oil

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 5:40 am

Copyright 2015 KUHF-FM. To see more, visit http://www.houstonpublicmedia.org.

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Education
4:05 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Students At Corinthian Colleges Will Have Loans Forgiven

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 5:40 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Energy
3:12 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Keystone XL Pipeline Benefits U.S. And Canada, Alberta Premier Says

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 5:40 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Your Money
4:28 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

Looking For Even Cheaper Gas? Go Generic At An Indie Station

Traffic moves along Route 21 in downtown Newark, N.J., where a gas station lists the price for regular unleaded gasoline at $1.72.
Julio Cortez AP

Originally published on Tue February 10, 2015 12:44 pm

By now, the surprise of cheap gas has probably worn off.

But drivers on the hunt for the very best prices have noticed a new trend: Small, independent gas stations are often the first to cut prices when the price of crude oil falls. This has a lot to do with how gas is bought, sold and moved from pipeline to pump.

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The Two-Way
4:26 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

Alberta Premier Says Keystone XL Pipeline Benefits U.S. And Canada

A placard with the Canadian flag rests on the ground covered in oil as demonstrators protest against the Keystone XL Pipeline and the Alberta tar sands.
Nam Y. Huh AP

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 12:34 pm

Jim Prentice, the premier of Alberta, Canada, says the fight over the Keystone XL pipeline has been a long and tortured process. But, he adds, if President Obama vetoes a bill that would approve construction, the issue will not necessarily go away.

There is enormous opposition among environmentalists to the $8 billion pipeline project that's designed to bring crude oil extracted from the Canadian tar sands to refineries along America's Gulf Coast.

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The Two-Way
3:30 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

House Votes To Repeal Affordable Care Act

Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, pauses at a news conference before announcing that the House planned to vote Tuesday to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, following a GOP strategy session at Republican National Committee headquarters on Capitol Hill in Washington. While the repeal passed 239-186, it's likely to fail in the Senate or be vetoed by the president.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 3:51 pm

The House voted 239-186 today to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the latest effort by the Republican-controlled chamber to scrap the law.

The measure also would direct panels to come up with a replacement for the healthcare law — though it doesn't provide a timeline on any new legislation or what provisions it may contain.

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U.S.
2:37 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

Nebraska Says Colorado Pot Isn't Staying Across The Border

Deuel County Sheriff Adam Hayward shows off a container of confiscated marijuana in Chappell, Neb., in July.
Nikki Kahn The Washington Post/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 9:02 am

There's a PSA that greets you on the radio when you're driving the flat stretch of Colorado State Highway 113 near the Nebraska state line: "With marijuana legal under Colorado law, we've all got a few things to know. ... Once you get here, can't leave our state. Stick around, this place is pretty great."

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Business
2:37 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

Standard & Poor's To Pay Over $1 Billion In Legal Settlement

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 4:28 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Salt
11:37 am
Tue February 3, 2015

How Fish Could Change What It Means For Food To Be Organic

At Troutdale Farm in Missouri, farmhand Vince Orcutt pulls out rainbow trout ready to harvest.
Kristofor Husted/Harvest Public Media

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 12:58 pm

When it comes to organic certification, food producers must follow strict guidelines.

For an organic steak, for instance, the cow it came from has to be raised on organic feed, and the feed mix can't be produced with pesticides, chemical fertilizers or genetic engineering.

Now, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is considering a set of rules for organic farmed fish. Several consumer groups, though, say the recommended rules don't go far enough to meet the strict standards of other organic foods.

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The Two-Way
10:28 am
Tue February 3, 2015

New York State Clamps Down On Herbal Supplements

DNA tests were run on supplements claiming to contain ginko bilboa, St. John's wort, ginseng and echinacea.
Chris Hondros Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 5:05 pm

Updated at 7 p.m. ET

Target says it will pull the supplements identified by the New York attorney general from its stores and website. The company says, with its vendor, it will investigate and will cooperate with the attorney general.

Walmart says it will pull the items from its shelves in New York, and that "based on testing performed by our suppliers we have not found any issues with the relevant products."

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Law
10:27 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Justice Dept. Settles S&P Lawsuit

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Two-Way
6:55 am
Tue February 3, 2015

S&P Pays Nearly $1.38B To Settle Mortgage Crisis Claims

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 9:34 am

Financial ratings service Standard & Poor's will pay almost $1.38 billion to settle charges that it took part in a scheme in which investors lost billions of dollars after putting money into securities whose credit ratings didn't reflect their true risk.

Under the settlement, S&P parent company McGraw Hill Financial will make two payments of $687.5 million: one to the U.S. Justice Department and another that's divided among 19 states and the District of Columbia.

McGraw Hill says it will also pay $125 million to the California Public Employees' Retirement System.

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Politics
4:13 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Budget Sent To Congress Values Middle-Class Economics

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 8:28 pm

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Around the Nation
3:17 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Wis. Budget Proposal Reignites Debate Over Private, Public Sector

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:27 am

Copyright 2015 Wisconsin Public Radio. To see more, visit http://wpr.org/.

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Business
2:59 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Budget Proposal Calls For Billions In New Government Spending

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:27 am

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Economy
2:59 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Workers Should Be Prepared To Start Over In New Jobs, Stats Show

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:27 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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NPR Story
2:59 am
Tue February 3, 2015

Super Bowl Watchers Register Shock Over Nationwide Commercial

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:27 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Business
1:59 am
Tue February 3, 2015

With Oil Prices So Low, What's That Fuel Surcharge For, Exactly?

The price of jet fuel has dropped, but airlines are still adding fuel surcharges to the price of many tickets. Many other industries that use large amounts of fuel, like shipping and delivery services, have also maintained extra fuel fees.
Nam Y. Huh AP

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:27 am

When oil prices shot up a few years ago, many transportation and delivery businesses started adding fuel surcharges to their prices.

Now, fuel prices are plunging, but lots of those surcharges still linger, and consumer advocates are crying foul.

The drop in the cost of oil is a huge factor in the airline industry, where 30 percent of all expenses are for fuel. But airlines, along with other industries with large fuel expenses, have been slow to respond with lower prices.

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Parallels
1:56 am
Tue February 3, 2015

The Oscar Nominees Are In; The Shanghai DVD Sellers Are Stocking Up

Some DVD vendors in Shanghai still sell on the street, but a government crackdown forced most out of business or into storefronts.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Sun February 8, 2015 9:40 pm

The Academy Awards are coming this month, and if you're still trying to see all the Oscar-nominated films, it may be easier to find them in China than in the U.S.

A few weeks ago, the films flooded into the pirated-DVD store down the street from my apartment in Shanghai. It happens like clockwork every year.

I asked T.J. Green, an American executive who runs a small movie theater company here in China, to visit the store and explain what was happening.

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The Two-Way
11:32 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

A Sigh Of Relief For The Murdoch Media Empire

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch's vast empire encompasses everything from newspapers to television networks to tabloids.
Jamie McDonald AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 6:14 am

The year started well and has only improved for Rupert Murdoch, the media magnate atop the twin corporate holdings of News Corp. and 21st Century Fox.

With caustic commentary on Twitter, Murdoch helped make the case that former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney should depart the hustings. Through his tabloids, he has argued for a new agenda for the struggling conservative governments his publications had championed in Australia and the U.K. In all three instances, the octogenarian corporate chief demonstrated his relevance and asperity.

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The Two-Way
5:20 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Jay Z Close To Entering Streaming Music Business

Jay Z at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The rapper is close to acquiring the Swedish streaming music service Aspiro.
Rich Schultz Getty Images for Roc Nation Sports

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 12:22 pm

Rapper, husband of Beyonce and all-around business mogul Jay Z (also known as Shawn Carter) is set to enter the growing streaming music industry. Late last week, a subsidiary of Jay Z's S. Carter Enterprises called Project Panther Bidcom Ltd. made a $56.2 million dollar bid for the Swedish streaming company Aspiro. Aspiro's board unanimously approved the deal. A vote from shareholders is still to come.

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Code Switch
4:30 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Sundance Festival Opens Doors For Minority Filmmakers

This year's Sundance Film Festival generated buzz for Dope, an indie film with an African-American director, Latino and Asian-American producers and starring a multicultural cast.
David Moir Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Originally published on Thu February 5, 2015 1:18 pm

The Sundance Film Festival wrapped up last weekend. For more than two decades, the festival and the Sundance Institute have been a springboard for independent filmmakers. This year, two of its darlings — Boyhood and Whiplash — are nominated for an Academy Award in the best picture category.

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New Boom
3:47 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Economists Say Millennials Should Consider Careers In Trades

Jeffy Docteur is one of the students in the NStar electrician apprenticeship program outside Boston. He says he's interested in working on switching systems that keep power flowing through the electrical grid.
Chris Arnold NPR

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 9:39 am

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

As the economy continues to recover, economists are seeing stark differences between people with high school and college degrees. The unemployment rate is nearly twice as high for Americans with a high school diploma as for those with a four-year college degree or more.

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Politics
2:42 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Gov. Scott Walker Eyes 2016, But Can He Get Past Labor's Loathing?

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker spoke about taking on public employee unions, and the protests that followed, at a recent candidates forum in Iowa. He said what people may not know is that protesters — as many as 1,000 of them — showed up outside his home while his family was there. He says he also received death threats.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 2, 2015 4:30 pm

There is not a lot of love between the U.S. labor movement and those on the long list of potential 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls. But there is one name among the GOP prospects that labor truly despises — and fears. He is Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who weakened unions in his own state and appears ready to make his battles with labor a centerpiece of a bid for the White House.

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Media
2:29 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Nationwide Has A Hit And A Miss With Super Bowl Ads

Originally published on Mon February 2, 2015 4:30 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Parallels
2:29 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Cash Is Definitely Not King For Card-Carrying Swedes

Nina Galata displays her smartphone equipped with a card reader to accept donations and payment for Situation Stockholm, a magazine sold by Stockholm's homeless.
Jonas Ekstromer TT/AFP/Getty

Originally published on Thu February 5, 2015 1:22 pm

Peter Fredell carries an unusual wallet. It feels a bit like leather, but the material is pale and thin. He pulls it out on a street corner in Stockholm.

"I actually made it myself," he says. "It's an eel that I fished up. And I used the skin and stitched it together."

This eelskin wallet carries personal significance — but it does not carry cash.

Around the world, cash is fading. Electronic transactions are becoming a bigger part of the economy every year. And one of the leaders in this trend is Sweden, where more than 95 percent of transactions are digital.

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All Tech Considered
2:09 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Coke's Super Bowl Ad Puts Spotlight On Cyberbullying

YouTube

Originally published on Mon February 2, 2015 2:54 pm

The thought of spilling a drink on a computer probably induces a feeling of panic in most of us. Little did we know, however, that a few drops of a sugary soda could be the key to solving cyberbullying.

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