Business

Economy
12:40 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

As 2013 Begins, A 'Pretty Positive' Job Outlook

The health care sector added 45,000 jobs in December and is expected to see continued growth this year, economists say.
iStockphoto.com

If you're searching for work in this new year, the Labor Department's final jobs report for 2012 suggests: The trend is your friend in 2013.

The jobs outlook is actually "pretty positive," said John Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, an employment consulting firm.

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Planet Money
12:09 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

3-D Printing Is (Kind Of) A Big Deal

The printed cup.
via Shapeways

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 8:15 pm

The first key to thinking about 3-D printers is this: Do not think printer. Think magic box that creates any object you can imagine.

In the box, razor-thin layers of powdered material (acrylic, nylon, silver, whatever) pile one on top of the other, and then, voila — you've got a shoe, or a cup, or a ring, or an iPhone case.

It's miraculous to see. Press a button, make anything you want. But just how important is 3-D printing? Unlike earlier big-deal technologies (like, say, the tractor) 3-D printing won't really replace what came before.

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Economy
9:39 am
Fri January 4, 2013

After Outsourcing Boom, An 'Insourcing' Comeback?

Following years of moving jobs overseas, some companies are deciding there are benefits to manufacturing products here at home. Guest host Celeste Headlee discusses the latest jobs numbers and the new trend called "insourcing." Headlee talks with Wall Street Journal reporter Sudeep Reddy and journalist Charles Fishman.

The Salt
9:02 am
Fri January 4, 2013

FDA Releases Rules To Strengthen Safety Of Food Supply

Farmworkers like these in California picking produce may soon be required by the FDA to take more precautions against spreading foodborne illness.
Heather Craig iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 7, 2014 1:10 pm

UPDATED: 4:50 p.m. Looking for a little weekend reading? The Food and Drug Administration has just the thing. On Friday, the agency released two proposed rules designed to boost the safety of the nation's food supply, encompassing hundreds of pages.

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The Two-Way
6:35 am
Fri January 4, 2013

155,000 Jobs Added In December, Jobless Rate At 7.8 Percent

Looking for work: The scene at a "diversity job fair" in Manhattan last month.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 10:00 am

There were 155,000 jobs added to public and private payrolls in December, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday morning.

That's right in line with economists' expectations and is another sign of steady, though modest, growth in employment. In November, employers added an estimated 161,000 jobs. The average monthly gain in 2012 was 153,000 jobs, BLS says. That's the same average as in 2011.

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The Two-Way
5:14 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Did Hiring Pick Up As 2012 Ended? We'll Find Out Shortly

The scene at a job fair in San Mateo, Calif., earlier this year.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 6:38 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Yuki Noguchi previews the jobs report

8:35 a.m. ET. And the answer is: 155,000 jobs added to payrolls in December; the jobless rate held at 7.8 percent. (November's rate was revised up to 7.8 percent.)

Our original post:

Here it comes — the always eagerly anticipated news about jobs and the nation's unemployment rate.

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Business
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

California Law Addresses Social Media Privacy

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 6:46 am

California has a new law in affect this year that bars employers from forcing employees to hand over their social media passwords. Some companies have been asking for these passwords to keep tabs on employees.

Energy
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Budget Deal Provides Tax Brakes For Green Energy

Ruben Fragoso checks out appliances at Best Buy in Miami in April 2010, when Florida residents were taking advantage of a federally funded discount for Energy Star-rated appliances. Legislation just passed by Congress as part of the fiscal-cliff deal includes tax breaks for energy-efficient appliances.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 10:27 am

Whether you're a homeowner who bought an energy-saving refrigerator last year or a company hoping to build a wind farm, the tax package Congress just approved may give you a reason to cheer.

"It's got something in there, a Christmas gift if you will, for almost everyone — American homeowners, workers who commute via transit, and manufacturers of efficient equipment like clothes washers, dryers, refrigerators," says Kateri Callahan, president of the Alliance to Save Energy.

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Economy
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

December's Jobless Rate Forecast To Remain Steady

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 11:19 am

U.S. employers continued to add jobs at a modest but steady pace last month. Despite worries about the fiscal cliff, the unemployment rate stood at 7.8 percent. There were no big surprises in Friday's report from the Labor Department.

Business
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 6:46 am

An entrepreneur in London is raising money online to open a coffee shop in the city that's feline friendly. Cat cafes are already popular in some Asian cities, where many landlords don't allow pets.

Business
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Google Avoids Antitrust Charges

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 6:46 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The Federal Trade Commission has closed its long running anti-trust investigation of Google. While the search giant agreed to change some of its business practices, the FTC did not launch a formal anti-trust case against the company or impose any financial penalties.

Here's NPR's Steve Henn.

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Business
2:41 am
Fri January 4, 2013

2012 Was A Very Good Year For The Car Industry

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 6:46 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a roundup of auto sales.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: We mentioned the other day that auto sales numbers for 2012 were looking like they were going to be very good. Now we have the numbers. For the auto industry, sales increased by 13 percent in 2012 and the major carmakers were profitable.

NPR's Sonari Glinton tells us why.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: 2012 brought with it the third straight year of double digit growth for the auto industry.

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Energy
1:28 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Drilling For Facts Under The 'Promised Land' Fiction

Matt Damon's character in the movie Promised Land comes to town to convince a landowner to allow a gas company to drill on his property.
Scott Green Focus Features

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 9:41 am

There is plenty in the movie Promised Land that will prompt energy industry insiders to roll their eyes. But the overall issues explored in the film, which is being widely released in theaters Friday, are very real.

A process called hydraulic fracturing has led to drilling booms that are transforming rural communities into industrial zones. Hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," makes it possible to tap into natural gas reservoirs deep underground. But first, gas companies have to convince landowners to allow them to drill.

The Natural Gas Pitch

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Superstorm Sandy: Before, During And Beyond
3:28 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

After Sandy, Can The Jersey Shore Come Home Again?

A woman walks past a cabana complex pulled off its foundations by Superstorm Sandy in Sea Bright, N.J., in November.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 6:25 pm

Think about it and you'll start to realize how important the Jersey shore is to American culture. Sure there's the television show Jersey Shore, but there are more enduring signs. Consider the board game Monopoly; properties are named after Atlantic City locations. And during a television fundraiser for Superstorm Sandy victims in November, comedian Jimmy Fallon talked specifically about the Jersey Shore.

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U.S.
1:20 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

The Phantom Tax That Made The Deficit Look Better

The alternative minimum tax created a "useful fiction," as one analyst says, by appearing to shrink budget deficits.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

As Americans continue to sort out the contents of the fiscal cliff legislative package passed by Congress Tuesday, they are finding elements they like and some they hate.

There's one exception. Everyone is glad Congress finally found a permanent fix for the alternative minimum tax.

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The Two-Way
12:46 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Transocean To Pay $1.4 Billion In Gulf Oil Spill Settlement

The Transocean Discoverer Enterprise drill ship collects oil from the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil well as workers try to stem the flow of the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, June 12, 2010.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:10 pm

Transocean, the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig where 11 men died in April 2010, has agreed to pay $1.4 billion in criminal and civil penalties to resolve Justice Department allegations over its role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

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The Salt
12:35 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Hold That Mini-Burger: Restaurants Forecast Food For 2013

Sliders. We're over them, the National Restaurant Association says.
Bob Ingelhart iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue January 8, 2013 7:42 am

Still ordering gazpacho and sliders at your favorite restaurant? Not pre-screening restaurant menus before you make a reservation? Well, hop in the DeLorean and set the chronometer to 2013: You're really behind the times.

Technology is in and bacon-flavored chocolate is out, says a recent survey of 1,800 chefs across the nation.

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The Two-Way
11:41 am
Thu January 3, 2013

FTC Closes Google Inquiry; Tech Giant Makes Changes And Avoids Antitrust Charges

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 12:25 pm

Google has agreed to change some of its business practices, in an agreement made with the Federal Trade Commission that will end the U.S. agency's antitrust probe of the search and technology company.

In the terms of the deal, Google agrees not to appropriate content such as users' reviews from other sites for use in its search and mobile offerings. The company also pledged to make it easier for advertisers to compare the value of running ad campaigns through Google compared to advertising on rivals Yahoo and Microsoft.

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Politics
9:54 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Will Congress Get Along In 2013?

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 10:05 am

A new Congress takes office today, after a nail-biting end to the last term. There were reports of choice words from House Speaker John Boehner to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, but Congress came together on a budget agreement. Guest host Celeste Headlee asks how congressional deals are made, and what to expect from the freshman class.

The Two-Way
6:26 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Layoffs Have Slowed, Hiring Has Picked Up, But Jobless Claims Are Higher

The scene at a career fair in New York City last fall.
Mike Segar Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 6:46 am

Update at 8:40 a.m. ET. Jobless Claims Went Up; So Two Out Of Three Reports Were Positive:

There were 372,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, up by 10,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration says. What's more, that previous week's total was revised up from the previous estimate of 350,000.

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It's All Politics
4:45 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Was Boehner's Fiscal Cliff End Run Past GOP The New Normal?

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio (right), and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., enter a Republican caucus meeting at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

By letting the House take up the Senate's fiscal cliff-dodging legislation that raises income tax rates on the wealthiest earners, Speaker John Boehner answered affirmatively a question that had been on many minds: Would he allow an up-or-down floor vote on a bill opposed by most fellow House Republicans?

Until the New Year's Day vote, Boehner had generally operated the House under what was known as the Hastert Rule. Named for former Speaker Dennis Hastert, it required a "majority of the majority" to support legislation before the speaker approved a floor vote.

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Around the Nation
4:27 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Mackinac Island Worries About Preserving Main St.

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:47 am

Michigan's Mackinac Island was fought over by France, England and the United States. The 200-year-old city in northern Lake Huron is a popular tourist destination. But the demolition of old buildings has raised a fierce debate about how to hold onto the past while profiting from it.

Business
3:30 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Business News

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 5:28 am

The credit-ratings agency Moody's said this weeks' deficit reduction deal did not produce "meaningful improvement" to the issue at hand. That issue: the debt burden and economic output. Moody's warned that if improvements were not made, the agency could downgrade the U.S. credit rating.

Around the Nation
3:30 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Wind Power Changes Landscape In Multiple Ways

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 5:22 am

The "fiscal cliff" deal leaves in place tax subsidies for the wind power industry for at least one more year. Windmills have dramatically changed the picture of the Midwest. Wind has also changed the landscape economically and politically.

Business
3:30 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Skirmishes Over Taxes, Spending Are Ahead

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:54 am

David Greene talks to Wall David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal, about what the "fiscal cliff" deal did not accomplish, and what fiscal tasks face the new Congress.

Around the Nation
3:30 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Farmers Frustrated By Farm Bill Extension

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 5:09 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Farmers and ranchers across this country expected to start the year with a new farm bill in place. This is an important piece of legislation to many people. It sets agricultural policy for the next five years.

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Television
3:30 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Al Gore's Current TV Sold To Al Jazeera

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:49 am

The acquisition gives Al Jazeera, which is financed by the Qatari government, access to an American TV audience. The new channel, Al Jazeera America, will be based in New York. Current TV was founded in 2004 by former Vice President Al Gore.

NPR Story
3:27 am
Thu January 3, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 5:35 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And that brings us to today's last word in business: melty money.

The Bank of Canada released new hundred dollar bills in 2011. The high-tech bank notes are made of polymers. They're sort of like plastic bills. The goal was to make them indestructible. They were put through a lot of tests. They were put through the wash, frozen, boiled. But some Canadians who have their hands on the money say the plastic bills melt when subjected to extreme heat.

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Economy
2:59 am
Thu January 3, 2013

What Is A Good Unemployment Number, Really?

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:50 am

On Friday, new unemployment numbers will be released for December. In last month's report, the unemployment rate dropped to 7.7 percent, a four-year low. For a preview of the labor market prospects for the new year, Steve Inskeep talks to Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Global Insight, an international consulting firm.

Business
3:29 pm
Wed January 2, 2013

Avis And Zipcar Partnership Could Reshape Rental Business

Originally published on Wed January 2, 2013 5:51 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, it's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

I'm Robert Siegel. And here's a case of an old business colossus buying up a scrappy innovator. Avis, the traditional car rental company, is buying Zipcar for $500 million. Zipcar is the car-sharing company with the slogan: Wheels when you want them. NPR's Jim Zarroli reports the deal illustrates how car sharing is reshaping the rental business and drawing in a new demographic.

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