Business

Economy
3:13 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Calif. Budget Plan Cuts Programs To Trim Deficit

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 5:17 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a budget deal in California.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: This deal comes just days before the start of the new fiscal year. It cuts social programs and it would knock three weeks off of Californian's school year unless voters approve a proposal for new taxes.

Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler reports from Sacramento.

BEN ADLER, BYLINE: The Democrats running this year's California budget process say they have one overarching goal: to bring years of festering shortfalls to an end.

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Business
3:13 am
Fri June 22, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 5:36 am

Product safety regulators announced the recall Thursday after hundreds of people reported explosions in their toilet tanks. The faulty flushing system is made by the brand Flushmate — specifically the Flushmate Three Pressure-Assist Flushing System. It's used by several toilet manufacturers including American Standard and Crane.

Economy
3:13 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Credit Rating Agency Moody's Downgrades 15 Banks

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 5:17 am

Fifteen major banks were downgraded Thursday in a reflection of the slowing global economy and volatility in financial markets. In a sweeping move, Moody's cut the credit ratings of some of the world's largest financial institutions, including Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup.

Shots - Health Blog
1:04 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Why Many Young Adults Might Lose Coverage If Health Law Falls

Jackson Cahn, who graduated from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Wash., is one of the 3 million young adults the Obama administration says would have risked going without insurance if the health care law hadn't allowed them to stay on their parents' policies. Because of the law, his mother, June Blender, was able to add him to her insurance.
Courtesy of June Blender

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 7:39 am

When it comes to health care, even the seemingly easy things become hard.

Take coverage for young adults under the Affordable Care Act.

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All Tech Considered
1:02 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Your New Digital Wallet: In The Cloud But Still Tethered To Fees

David Marcus, president of PayPal, unveils PayPal Here in San Francisco in March. The service allows customers to use their smartphones to pay for purchases at retail stores.
Kim White AP

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 2:38 pm

Tech companies from Seattle to Silicon Valley, intent on transforming how we shop, have set their sights on the electronic payments industry.

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All Tech Considered
1:01 am
Fri June 22, 2012

Tesla's New Electric Sedan: Five Passengers, 89 MPG, And No Engine

The new Model S from Tesla has a maximum range of 265 miles with a full charge. The car can also reach 60 miles per hour in 4.4 seconds — a feat the company says may affect overall mileage.
Bill Chappell NPR

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 8:46 am

The Tesla electric car company has high hopes for its new Model S, which it calls "the world's first premium electric sedan." The new car, which is being delivered to customers Friday, is priced at around half the cost of the only other Tesla model, the svelte, two-door Roadster.

The new car's sticker price starts around $57,000; a $7,500 federal tax credit drops the starting price just below $50,000. But like its gas-powered cousins, this electric vehicle has so many options available that its price can soar to near $100,000.

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The Salt
3:02 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Kosher: The Hottest Word On Food Labels

This matzo ball soup may be kosher, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's better for you.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri June 22, 2012 4:11 am

Grandma's can of matzo ball soup and jar of gefilte fish have never seen such love.

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Politics
2:22 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Bipartisan Support Boosts Farm Bill Through Senate

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 3:19 pm

The massive farm bill cleared the Senate on Thursday, setting up negotiations with the House over changes in a number of programs, including crop insurance and food stamps.

Business
2:22 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

Oracle CEO Purchases Entire Hawaiian Island

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 3:19 pm

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has purchased almost the entire Hawaiian island of Lanai. Melissa Block talks with Mike Wilson, author of a book on Ellison, about the purchase and other eccentric moves by the software magnate.

The Salt
12:14 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

California Dairy Farmers Split Over Milk Payments In Farm Bill

A dairy cow peeks out of its stall at Case van Steyn's dairy in Galt, Calif.
Kathleen Masterson NPR

Originally published on Tue June 26, 2012 3:27 pm

California is known as the land of fruits and nuts, but it also happens to be the country's largest milk-producing state. So it's no surprise that its dairy farmers are front and center in the debate over reforming the milk marketing system, which hasn't really changed much in 30 years.

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Business
9:55 am
Thu June 21, 2012

The Impossible Juggling Act: Motherhood And Work

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 10:56 am

For two years, Princeton professor Anne-Marie Slaughter was the director of policy planning at the State Department. It was her "dream job" — the job she imagined herself doing in college.

"I loved the work," she tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "It was work I was so passionate about."

Slaughter commuted to the State Department in Washington, D.C., every week from Princeton, N.J., where her husband and two teenage sons lived.

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The Two-Way
9:26 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Commerce Secretary Bryson Resigns; Suffered Seizure Earlier This Month

Commerce Secretary John Bryson.
Rajanish Kakade AP

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 9:40 am

Just under two weeks after suffering a seizure that led to two car accidents within minutes of each other, Commerce Secretary John Bryson has submitted his resignation.

Our former colleague David Gura (now with Marketplace) has downloaded a copy of Bryson's letter to the president and posted it here.

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The Salt
8:54 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Company Bets Robotic Vending Machine Pizza Is A Winner

A promotional image for Let's Pizza.
A1 Concepts

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 10:19 am

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The Two-Way
6:39 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Jobless Claims Hold Steady; 387,000 Filed Last Week

There were 387,000 first-time claims for jobless benefits filed last week, down just 2,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

The previous week's number, by the way, was revised up slightly — to 389,000 from the initial estimate of 386,000.

The Associated Press writes that:

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Business
3:26 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 4:53 am

A new study from the Pew Research Center shows that the gap between states' assets and how much they'll owe retirees in pensions and health care is growing. According to the most recent numbers, for fiscal year 2010 that gap grew 9 percent from the previous year to almost $1.4 trillion dollars.

Business
3:26 am
Thu June 21, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 4:58 am

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison reached a deal to buy nearly the entire Hawaiian island of Lanai. The land is currently owned by billionaire David Murdock who is the CEO of Castle and Cooke and the majority stock holder in Dole Food Company.

Business
3:26 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Spanish Miners Strike Against Government Cuts

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 4:30 am

Spain is in line to get a European bailout of up to $125 billion for its banks. Audits due Thursday will show just how indebted Spanish banks are. But economic uncertainty has already sparked violence.

Your Money
2:05 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Why Your 401(k) May Be Worth Less Than You Think

The Labor Department will mandate that 401(k) plan providers disclose more information about the fees they charge.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 1:26 pm

As Americans watched their nest eggs sink during the Great Recession, many wondered whether they would ever be able to retire. Come this fall, millions of workers who invest in 401(k)s will learn their plans are probably worth even less than they thought.

"Fees take away from the accumulated savings of your lifetime," says Mary Beth Franklin, a contributing editor at InvestmentNews.

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Crisis In The Housing Market
2:03 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Bidders Get Feisty Over Foreclosed Homes

Daily auctions are held on foreclosed properties in front of the county courthouse in Corona, Calif. About 80 bidders, representing investors, show up to bid on properties.
Yuki Noguchi NPR

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 4:21 am

For-sale homes in California are sparse, even in areas with high foreclosure rates. It has led to buyers like Jennifer Bryant, who is willing to throw money at just about anyone willing to sell her a house.

Since February, Bryant has made 35 offers on homes in Riverside, only to be elbowed out by other bids. With few houses available and many bidders chasing these properties, she feels she has, at most, an hour to consider each house.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:47 pm
Wed June 20, 2012

When 'Madagascar' Meets Children's Claritin

One of the Madagascar 3-themed activities for kids touted on Merck's Claritin Facebook page.
Facebook

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 3:23 pm

Merck is catching flak for marketing Children's Claritin with cute cartoon characters from the latest installment in the Madagascar movie series.

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The Two-Way
12:36 pm
Wed June 20, 2012

Bernanke: Federal Reserve Expects 'Slow Progress' On Unemployment

Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke speaks during a news conference on Wednesday in Washington, DC.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 1:51 pm

The Federal Reserve is ready to take further action — including the purchase of Treasury bonds — "to provide support for the economy," the Chairman of the Fed Ben Bernanke said during a press conference.

Bernanke also said that the members of the Federal Open Market Committee had "marked down" their outlooks on the economy.

Most expect there to be little change in the unemployment rate through the end of the year. The consensus, said Bernanke, is that the Fed expects "slow progress" on unemployment and most opinions are "weighted toward slower growth" on the GDP.

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Planet Money
11:45 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Why The Fed's Latest Move Isn't Likely To Do Much

Originally published on Thu June 21, 2012 11:38 am

The Federal Reserve just said it would extend "Operation Twist."

We talked about Operation Twist earlier this month, when we spoke with Joseph Gagnon, a former Fed economist now at the Peterson institute.

We wrote:

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Will The Fed Take Extra Steps To Stimulate Economy?

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 11:33 am

Update at 12:33 p.m. ET. Fed Extends 'Operation Twist':

The Federal Reserve said it was extending its "Operation Twist" through the end of year. It will add $267 billion more to the program in which the Fed sells some of its medium-term bonds in order to buy longer-term ones. In theory, that pushes down the interest rate on longer-term loans, especially mortgages.

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Planet Money
8:19 am
Wed June 20, 2012

What America Spends On Booze

The price of alcohol we buy at the store has gone down. The price of booze at bars has gone way up.
David Joyner iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 12:21 pm

Related: What America Spends On Groceries

Out of every $100 American consumers spend, about $1 goes to alcohol. That hasn't changed much over the past 30 years.

But where we spend our money on alcohol has changed quite a bit. We spend a bigger chunk of our booze money in bars and restaurants. We spend less money buying alcohol at the store to drink at home.

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Business
4:57 am
Wed June 20, 2012

The Fed In 3 Phrases: Decoding Bernanke And Co.

Many economists are predicting Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and his fellow policymakers will continue to depress long-term rates.
Alex Brandon AP

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 10:42 am

The Federal Reserve — the nation's central bank — will end its two-day meeting on Wednesday by offering its assessment of the economy, and then declaring its latest plan for making things better.

Investors all over the world will be waiting to hear just how weak — or not — the Fed thinks the U.S. economy is. And they will be watching to see whether the bankers plan to continue trying to stimulate growth by extending two controversial programs, one known as Operation Twist, and the other as quantitative easing.

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Business
2:46 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Study: Fat People Burden Earth's Resources

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 6:08 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Now, for a global perspective on our national weight problem. The number of humans on the planet is now more than seven billion. And our total weight is 287 million tons. That number comes from a new study that suggests weight, not just headcount, should be considered when looking at the impact of people on the planet.

To find out more, we called Ian Roberts. He's a professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and is the lead author of this study.

Good morning, Professor Roberts.

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Business
2:46 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Sharp Shows Off 'World's Biggest' LED TV

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 6:08 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business is: supersized couch potato.

This week, Japanese electronics maker Sharp unveiled what it's calling the biggest LED TV on the planet. The 90-inch set has WiFi built in and you can buy it with a webcam option. You could, say, Skype with 50 people at once and see all their faces.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Of course, you would need a lot of wall space and a fat wallet. It cost $11,000.

That's the business news on MORNING EDITION. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Economy
2:46 am
Wed June 20, 2012

G-20 Leaders Promise To Promote Economic Growth

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 6:08 am

Leaders of the world's biggest economies wrapped up the G-20 summit in Mexico Tuesday with a promise to work together to promote jobs. The meeting comes amid worrisome signs of slowing growth in the United States and elsewhere.

Economy
2:46 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Investors Look To The Fed For An Economic Boost

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 7:59 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with the Fed in the spotlight.

U.S. stocks rallied yesterday largely on a belief among investors that the Federal Reserve will take further action to stimulate the economy. The Fed concludes a two-day meeting around noon today. Afterwards, Chairman Ben Bernanke will hold a news conference to explain the Fed's strategy.

As NPR's John Ydstie reports, there are several things the Fed could do to try to boost growth, but whether they'd be effective is debatable.

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Business
2:46 am
Wed June 20, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Wed June 20, 2012 6:08 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Now, to policy making with some fizz. The mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts, has proposed limiting the size of sodas and sweetened drinks that can be sold in the city.

Henrietta Davis said she was inspired by the mayor of New York. Michael Bloomberg has proposed a ban on sales of oversized sugary drinks in his city's restaurants. Mayor Davis says soda is a factor behind increasing obesity and heart disease among young people.

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