Business

Business
5:24 am
Sun September 9, 2012

After 73 Years At Macy's, Employee Retires

Originally published on Sun September 9, 2012 11:43 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Rose Syracuse has held one job - one job only - for her entire life. For 73 years, she worked mainly in the accounts department at the Macy's Department store on 34th Street in Manhattan. She's worked for Macy's longer than anyone else - ever. And last week, after all those decades, she retired. Rose Syracuse joins us on the line from New York. Thank you very much for taking the time to talk to us.

ROSE SYRACUSE: Oh, that's fine. And Rose Syracuse would not have retired if she hadn't broken her hip.

WERTHEIMER: Oh, dear.

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All Tech Considered
4:12 am
Sun September 9, 2012

The Tech Buyer's Dilemma: Timing The Plunge

Amazon Kindle vice president Peter Larsen holds the Kindle Fire HD at the introduction of the new tablet in Santa Monica, Calif., on Thursday.
Reed Saxon AP

If you're one of those people who covet the latest, greatest thing (assuming you can afford it), life's been pretty tough for you lately. The announcements of new handheld electronic gadgets — and rumors of those to come (Apple fans are standing by) — have come so rapidly that it's been hard to keep up with them all.

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Economy
3:01 pm
Fri September 7, 2012

New Unemployment Report Weaker Than Expected

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 4:18 pm

The jobs report released Friday morning came in weaker than expected. Employers added 96,000 jobs to payrolls. The unemployment rate did fall to 8.1 percent, but that was because so many people left the workforce.

It's All Politics
12:12 pm
Fri September 7, 2012

Deflating Jobs Report May Not Move The Needle On The Election

President Obama spoke at a campaign event at Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, N.H., on Friday.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 12:52 pm

It wasn't what President Obama was hoping for: another disappointing jobs report the morning after he accepted the Democratic nomination and asked Americans to stay the course.

The U.S. economy added just 96,000 jobs last month, according to the Labor Department, and a drop in the unemployment rate to 8.1 percent was mostly due to people giving up on job searches.

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Economy
9:58 am
Fri September 7, 2012

What August Job Numbers Mean

The Labor Department reported that the economy added 96,000 jobs in August, far fewer than analysts had predicted. The unemployment rate fell from 8.3 percent to 8.1 percent, an indication that more people moved out of the workforce. Host Michel Martin discusses the latest unemployment numbers with NPR Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax.

The Two-Way
5:51 am
Fri September 7, 2012

High Unemployment & Slow Job Growth: Likely News From Today's Report

At a job fair in San Diego this week, Navy Sailor E-5 Cedric Washington spoke to Sim Garriotti from Lockheed Martin while interviewing for a potential position.
Sandy Huffaker Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 8:34 am

The number of jobs on private and public payrolls grew by just 96,000 in August from July, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning.

Meanwhile, the nation's unemployment rate edged down to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent the month before. Often, the jobless rate dips even when employment growth is weak because the size of the labor force shrank as many Americans gave up looking for work.

It's a report that will surely add to the presidential campaign rhetoric.

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Business
2:39 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 8:15 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with strike two.

Business
2:39 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Amazon Rolls Out Its New Kindle E-Readers

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 8:15 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

A new line of tablet readers is at the top of NPR's business news.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: They come from Amazon, which is rolling out its latest Kindle e-readers. They are faster, we're told, as well as cheaper. And as NPR's Steve Henn reports, they're aimed squarely at the youngest members of the family.

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Business
2:39 am
Fri September 7, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 8:15 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business comes from China, and the word is: Wahaha. That's the name of China's third-largest beverage company. It sells soda, juice and other bottled drinks.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The name means laughing children. It turned out the man who runs it is the one with the most to laugh about.

INSKEEP: Zong Qing Hou is now the richest man in China, according to Bloomberg billionaire's index, which calculated his net worth to be $21.6 billion.

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Planet Money
1:23 am
Fri September 7, 2012

This Man Makes Beautiful Suits, But He Can't Afford To Buy One

See photos of Peter Frew and other tailors in this slide show from The New York Times Magazine.
Marvin Orellana The New York Times

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 8:15 am

Peter Frew is one of a tiny number of people left in the United States who can — entirely on his own, using almost no machinery — make a classic bespoke suit. He can measure you, draw a pattern, cut the fabric and then hand-stitch a suit designed to fit your body perfectly.

Frew spent more than a decade as an apprentice for a remarkable tailor in his native Jamaica. He now sells his suits for about $4,000. Since New York is filled with very rich people who see their suits as an essential uniform, Frew has all the orders he can handle.

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The Salt
1:22 am
Fri September 7, 2012

Panera Sandwich Chain Explores 'Pay What You Want' Concept

This Panera Cares store in Chicago switched from for-profit to nonprofit this summer, and it started asking customers to pay whatever they want.
Niala Boodhoo for NPR

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 2:11 pm

The concept of "pay what you want" for goods and services is a nostalgic throwback to the days when people trusted one another just a little bit more, and it's something you expect to see at the occasional farm stand or at a hip, independent coffee shop.

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The Two-Way
4:32 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

S&P 500 Spikes To New Four-Year High On News About Europe, U.S. Jobs

The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rose to levels it hasn't hit in more than four years today, bolstered by the European Central Bank's plan to buy bonds of struggling countries to help support the euro. Strong U.S. jobs data also contributed to the gains.

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Business
4:32 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Stocks Get Bounce From Europe; Focus Turns To Jobs

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 9. Economic developments on both sides of the Atlantic could have a big impact on the U.S. presidential election.
Richard Drew AP

As the political conventions wrap up, talking points concerning the economy may seem locked into place: Growth is continuing, but at a slow pace.

Don't be fooled.

There's still plenty of time for big surprises, and Thursday provided a stunning example. Stock prices shot to highs not seen in years.

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The Two-Way
3:39 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Achtung Beer Drinkers: Munich's Brewers Need Bottles, Kegs For Oktoberfest

Ahead of Oktoberfest, Munich's brewers say they're running short of bottles and kegs for the festival's beer. Here, glass beer steins are seen at last year's Oktoberfest.
Johannes Simon Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 10:29 pm

German beer drinkers are eagerly awaiting Sept. 22, when the first Oktoberfest beer barrel will be tapped in Munich and two weeks of revelry begin. But when that happens, they might want to drink up — because the city's brewers are worried they won't be able to supply enough beer for the massive party and its huge beer tents.

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Business
2:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

EBay Bans Supernatural Goods And Services

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 5:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. Since eBay emerged back in 1995, countless small businesses have used the website to sell or auction off their wares. But now, there are new restrictions. As we hear from NPR's Mandalit del Barco, tarot card readers, spell casters and psychics will no longer be able to use eBay to peddle what are known as metaphysical services.

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Election 2012
2:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Colorado Brewery Head One Of Few CEOs At The DNC

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 5:09 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish at the Democratic National Convention.

All week the conversation here has been about jobs. But other than a primetime appearance by Costco's co-founder, big business supporters have been MIA. I did find a meeting of progressive business leaders, where I met a CEO named Kim Jordan.

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Technology
2:49 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Amazon's New Kindle Will Have Thin Profit Margin

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 1:29 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

At a press event this morning in Los Angeles, Amazon unveiled its latest Kindle tablets and eReaders. As NPR's Steve Henn reports, it's unlikely Amazon will make much money selling these new devices, instead it hopes to profit when people use them to buy digital content.

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Technology
12:31 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Why Your Cell Phone Could Be Called A 'Tracker'

Many people use cellphones for purposes other than making calls. "If we call them trackers, then we're doing a much better job of informing ourselves what these devices are actually doing, and what we're really using them for," says ProPublica investigative reporter Peter Maass.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri September 7, 2012 10:29 am

Your cellphone is a tracking device collecting a lot more information about you than you may think, says ProPublica investigative reporter Peter Maass.

"They are collecting where we are — not just at one particular moment in the day, but at virtually every moment of the day," Maass tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies. "They are also taking note of what we are buying, how we're purchasing it, how often we're purchasing it."

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Business
12:09 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

New Standards May Change How Cars Are Made

Originally published on Mon September 10, 2012 6:56 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Last week, the Obama administration just about doubled fuel efficiency standards. By 2025, cars and light trucks will have to average better than 54 miles a gallon. That's a goal that pleases environmental groups and carmakers.

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Europe
8:17 am
Thu September 6, 2012

European Central Bank Announces Euro Plan

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 10:02 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

OK, over in Europe there's been a lot debate on what to do about the troubled currency. And today the European Central Bank announced a new plan to bolster the euro at a meeting in Frankfurt. Bank president Mario Draghi is under immense pressure to prevent the collapse of Europe's monetary union. The bank did not lower interest rates, as some investors hoped, but did unveil steps to ease the eurozone's debt crisis. NPR's Jim Zarroli is in Germany, following the events, and he joins us now. Good morning.

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The Salt
7:53 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Extreme Weather Means Extreme Food Prices Worldwide, Aid Agency Warns

Somali girls line up to receive a hot meal in Mogadishu last year after the worst drought in the Horn of Africa in decades, compounded by war, put millions in danger of starvation.
Roberto Schmmidt AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 19, 2012 2:11 pm

Reducing greenhouse gases and saving the polar bears tend to dominate discussions on climate change. But to the booming world population, one climate change issue may be even more pressing – hunger.

A new report by a leading international relief agency warns that climate change will increase the risk of large spikes in global food prices in the future, and lead to more hungry people in the world. That's because extreme weather like droughts, floods and heat waves are predicted to become much more frequent as the planet heats up.

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Around the Nation
7:14 am
Thu September 6, 2012

L.A.'s Ban On Marijuana Dispensaries Halted For Now

Medical cannabis patient Michael Oliveri smokes marijuana during a news conference in Universal City, Calif., last week. Medical marijuana advocates say they have enough signatures to place a referendum before voters that would overturn a ban on pot clinics in Los Angeles.
Nick Ut AP

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 3:01 pm

Thursday was supposed to mark the end of medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles, after the city council approved a ban on them this summer. But patients and advocates have managed to halt the ban, and some dispensary operators are suing the city.

For years, Los Angeles has been a mecca for medical marijuana dispensaries. Anyone with a doctor's recommendation could stop in at chic storefronts offering cannabis-laced desserts or at the more underground clinics, labeled only with a green cross. Hundreds, maybe 1,000 of these pot shops popped up around L.A.

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Employers Added 201,000 Jobs Last Month, Report Signals

The scene at a job fair in Harlem earlier this summer.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Three bits of good news about jobs were just released.

"Private-sector employment increased by 201,000 from July to August on a seasonally adjusted basis," according to the latest ADP National Employment Report.

And ADP revised up its estimate of the job growth in July — to 173,000 from the 163,000 it previously reported.

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The Two-Way
6:05 am
Thu September 6, 2012

European Central Bank Leaves Interest Rates Unchanged

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 7:20 am

"The European Central Bank refrained from cutting interest rates today as President Mario Draghi prepares to unveil a bond-purchase plan to save the euro," Bloomberg News writes. It adds that:

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Business
3:24 am
Thu September 6, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 8:17 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business is seeing red.

The designer Christian Louboutin is famous in certain circles for his super high heeled shoes. They can cost more than $4,000 and it's the red lacquer soles that Louboutin is really known for.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Economy
3:24 am
Thu September 6, 2012

European Central Bank To Meet On Interest Rates

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 8:17 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

When the European Central Bank holds its monthly meeting today, investors around the world will be watching nervously to see what the bank's head, Mario Draghi, says about interest rates. Draghi was recently quoted as saying he would do whatever it takes to keep Europe's debt crisis from growing out of control, and that could go beyond just cutting borrowing rates.

As NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, any European Central Bank plan to use its resources to prop up Europe's weaker economies will face strong opposition from the Germans.

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Business
3:24 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 8:17 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

A report on Christmas cargo is at the top of NPR's business news.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: If you want an early indication of how robust this year's holiday shopping season may be, take a look at the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

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Business
3:24 am
Thu September 6, 2012

Gaggle Of New Gadgets Wow Tech Lovers

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 8:17 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And in the tech world, dueling press conferences and competing corporate unveilings, this week and next, are putting the focus on new and improved gadgets.

NPR's Steve Henn joined us this morning from Silicon Valley to tell us about what's on the high tech horizon.

Good morning.

STEVE HENN, BYLINE: Good morning.

MONTAGNE: So there are a host of companies rolling out shiny new toys this week. What's catching your eye?

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Crisis In The Housing Market
3:56 pm
Wed September 5, 2012

Democratic Convention Draws Troubled Homeowners

David Sole rode a bus from Detroit to the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., to protest how the Obama administration and the nation's banks have handled the foreclosure crisis.
Yuki Noguchi NPR

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 5:03 pm

Charlotte, N.C., host of the 2012 Democratic National Convention, is the nation's biggest financial center outside of New York. But Charlotte and surrounding Mecklenburg County have the highest foreclosure rates in the state, and many thousands of homeowners owe more on their homes than the properties are worth.

As thousands of Democrats converge in Charlotte for the convention, some troubled homeowners have also gathered, lamenting that the foreclosure crisis has not been sufficiently front and center in the presidential campaign.

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Economy
1:39 pm
Wed September 5, 2012

Journalist Evaluates Obama, Romney Economic Plans

David Leonhardt, the Washington bureau chief of The New York Times, won a Pulitzer Prize last year for his columns about the economy.
Earl Wilson The New York Times

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 3:39 pm

On Monday, Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan told a campaign rally audience in North Carolina that "the president can say a lot of things, but he can't tell you you are better off." Later that day in Detroit, Vice President Joe Biden responded "America is better off today than they left us."

New York Times Washington bureau chief David Leonhardt argues that both Ryan and Biden are right: It's partly semantics.

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