Business

Energy
1:00 pm
Mon April 9, 2012

What Makes Gas Prices Continue To Rise?

Why does a gallon of gas at the pump cost an average of $3.93? Why might it soon hit $4? Robert Siegel asks Robin West, the chairman of PFC Energy, an energy consulting firm.

The Two-Way
11:30 am
Mon April 9, 2012

Facebook Is Buying Instagram

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Kimihiro Hoshino AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 9, 2012 1:30 pm

"I'm excited to share the news that we've agreed to acquire Instagram and that their talented team will be joining Facebook," Mark Zuckerberg just announced.

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Planet Money
10:57 am
Mon April 9, 2012

No, You Can't Deduct That

For our NYT Magazine column this weekend, we talked to 20 accountants, tax lawyers and policy wonks. Among other things, we asked them to list some ridiculous deductions their clients have tried to take.

Here are a few of our favorite answers, broken into two groups: relatively common, somewhat ridiculous; and less common, more ridiculous. Nothing on the list is tax deductible.

Relatively Common, Somewhat Ridiculous

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Remembrances
9:36 am
Mon April 9, 2012

Fresh Air Remembers Mike Wallace Of '60 Minutes'

Mike Wallace was one of the original correspondents on the CBS News show 60 Minutes. He retired in 2006 but continued to file pieces until 2008.
Mario Suriani AP

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:53 am

Mike Wallace, the CBS News correspondent who became famous for his two-fisted interview style and his hard-hitting conversations with politicians, celebrities and newsmakers, died Saturday. He was 93.

Wallace had been with the weekly CBS News magazine 60 Minutes since its inception in 1968. Working with producer Don Hewitt, Wallace became known for interviews in which he refused to be led away from topics his interview subjects found uncomfortable.

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Business
8:12 am
Mon April 9, 2012

Sony Reportedly Cutting 10,000 Jobs

Originally published on Mon April 9, 2012 8:15 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with big layoffs at Sony.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: The one-time leader in entertainment technology is trying to regain its edge, and that means painful changes. According to Japanese news reports and The Wall Street Journal, Sony plans to eliminate 10,000 jobs worldwide. That's about 6 percent of its overall workforce.

Opinion
6:47 am
Mon April 9, 2012

The Nation: Treading Dangerous Water With Jobs

People stand in a line that stretched around the block to enter a job fair held at the Jewish Community Center (JCC), on March 21, 2012 in New York City. More than 600 people registered to attend the job fair and meet potential employers.
John Moore Getty Images

George Zornick is a writer for The Nation.

The jobs data released this morning is a clear disappointment: only 120,000 jobs were added, which is less than what analysts predicted and barely enough to keep up with population growth. The unemployment rate went down slightly, to 8.2 percent, but only because the labor force shrank as people stopped looking for work.

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Opinion
6:45 am
Mon April 9, 2012

Weekly Standard: A Disappointing Jobs Report

Job seekers wait in line to enter the San Francisco Hirevent job fair at the Hotel Whitcomb on March 27, 2012 in San Francisco, California. As the national unemployment rate stands at 8.2 percent, job seekers turned out to meet with recruiters at the San Francisco Hirevent job fair where hundreds of jobs were available.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Irwin M. Stelzer is a writer for The Weekly Standard.

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Around the Nation
2:00 am
Mon April 9, 2012

New Jersey Law Causes Companies To Pull Gift Cards

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

At some point, you likely received a present from a prepaid gift card from the person who wasn't exactly sure what you'd want. Residents of New Jersey may not be able to buy them for much longer. American Express has pulled its gift cards from the state, and other big industry players are threatening to do the same. They oppose a new law that would allow New Jersey to claim unused gift card balances after two years. NPR's Joel Rose reports.

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Business
2:00 am
Mon April 9, 2012

Business News

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with labor woes at AT&T.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: AT&T and union officials have agreed to extend contract negotiations, preventing a mass walkout by some 40,000 unionized workers. The deadline to agree on the new contract had been yesterday. AT&T is seeking concessions from its workers, including cuts in pension contributions, and also an increase in health care premiums. The union is calling those concessions unrealistic.

Your Money
1:36 am
Mon April 9, 2012

What Do You Owe In Taxes? Depends Who's Counting

Which tax preparation service is best? That's what writer Joel Stein hoped to find out when he took his 2011 income data to different firms — including an H&R Block office, seen here in a file photo from last year's tax season.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 2, 2012 10:58 am

In 2012, the federal tax return deadline is Tuesday, April 17 — so if you haven't already filed your income tax return, you have about one week left to shop around for different options to finish your taxes, or request an extension.

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U.S.
1:25 am
Mon April 9, 2012

For-Profit Schools Under Fire For Targeting Veterans

Iraq war veteran Paul Rieckhoff (right), with Democratic Sens. Mark Begich of Alaska, Daniel Akaka of Hawaii and Patty Murray of Washington, introduces the GI benefit watchdog bill in Washington. Some lawmakers say for-profit schools are taking advantage of veterans and their educational benefits.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Tue April 10, 2012 11:27 am

Hundreds of thousands of veterans have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years, eager to get an education under the new post-Sept. 11 GI Bill.

Many vets looking for a school find they are inundated by sales pitches from institutions hungry for their government benefits. Now, lawmakers are looking for ways to protect vets without narrowing their education choices.

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Technology
6:00 am
Sun April 8, 2012

A Brief History Of The Mobile Phone

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

A new Smartphone goes on sale. The Nokia Lumina 900 represents the Finnish company's big and somewhat desperate effort to regain a toehold in the all-important U.S. market.

NPR's Wendy Kaufman offers this brief history of America's infatuation with the mobile phone.

WENDY KAUFMAN, BYLINE: In The iconic 1987 film "Wall Street," Michael Douglas strolls the beach with and uses his cell phone to congratulate an associate on making a ton of money.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "WALL STREET")

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The Salt
2:12 pm
Fri April 6, 2012

Indian Engineers Build A Stronger Society With School Lunch Program

The Akshaya Patra Foundation, a nonprofit based in Bangalore, partners with the government to make close to 1.3 million nutritious meals a day for schoolchildren throughout India.
Ryan Lobo for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 8:54 am

At a government-run public middle school in Bangalore, the blackboard's cracking, the textbooks are tattered and most of the students are barefoot.

But with all those challenges, the biggest obstacle that teachers face in keeping kids in school is hunger. Many students show up at school having had nothing to eat for breakfast.

On mornings one student comes to school hungry, the thought of school makes her break down, she says.

"When I had to get on the bus, I would start crying," says K. Suchitra, 13.

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Economy
1:00 pm
Fri April 6, 2012

Jobs Numbers Fall Short Of Predictions

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish. The U.S. economy added 120,000 jobs last month according to the Labor Department. A few years ago, that would have had economists cheering. Today, they're using words like disappointing. Here's the problem, 120,000 is half as many jobs as the economy added in February and far fewer than most observers were expecting.

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Economy
1:00 pm
Fri April 6, 2012

Jobs Report A Litmus Test For Economy's Direction

The U.S. economy added only 120,000 jobs in March, far below expectations. The job gains were the smallest in five months. The report isn't a conclusive verdict on the economy. It could be an off month of weak growth or the sign of something more troubling — a serious hiring slowdown.

Business
1:00 pm
Fri April 6, 2012

Hiring Climate Affects Small Businesses

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 4:23 pm

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

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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Social Entrepreneurs: Taking On World Problems
11:59 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Company Ties Shoes And Ethics Together

Gideon Shoes co-founder Matt Noffs with youth from The Street University, the nonprofit youth center that launched the fair trade company.
John Burnett NPR

Originally published on Sat April 7, 2012 10:16 am

You don't go through corporate communications to meet the executive steering committee at Gideon Shoes.

Instead, you walk through a basketball court with graffiti-covered walls and into a sound studio. There, Gideon employees are warming up their talking points: rap lyrics.

"There's no excuses in this life, so I'm fighting on. ... The flame inside my heart is more like a firestorm," they rap.

The team is made up of Suhkdeep Bhogal from India, Thane Poloai from Samoa and Allan from New Zealand, who doesn't want to give his last name.

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Economy
11:49 am
Fri April 6, 2012

For Long-Term Unemployed, Help Is Running Out

Job seekers line up to enter a career fair in Los Angeles. Both Congress and states are cutting back on unemployment benefits.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Diane Turner can't find work. She spent 30 years managing dental practices in Sonoma County, north of San Francisco, but lost her last job in that field a couple of years ago.

She worked for a while greeting customers at an auto body shop, but lost that job a year ago. "It was very depressing," Turner says. "I always worked, and I was always able to get a job."

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Economy
7:12 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Jobless Rate Slips; Fewer New Jobs Than Expected

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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

Let's talk about the surprisingly weak jobs report that came out from the Labor Department today. The numbers for March show just 120,000 new jobs were added to U.S. payrolls. That's considered a disappointment, even though the unemployment rate did decline slightly, to 8.2 percent.

NPR's John Ydstie is here to talk with us about what all this means. Hi, John.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Steve.

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Media
2:04 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Murdoch's 'Australian': A Powerful Player

A jogger runs past a banner for The Australian, part of Rupert Murdoch's newspaper empire, in Sydney last year.
Tim Wimborne Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 1:14 pm

Part three of four

Robert Manne, one of Australia's top public intellectuals and journalists, tells me the first thing to know about The Australian.

"It is by far the most detailed paper in regard to national politics," he says. "And it's also at a higher level of analysis, in general, than the other papers."

Second, he says, the paper is "smarter, sharper" than the others — with more resources and fewer profit demands to boot. Manne explains why:

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Business
2:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

GOP, Democrats Budgets Reflect Different Approaches

Steve Inskeep talks to David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal, about how the Republican budget by Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan compares with President Obama's proposal. The plans show differences on spending, taxes and dealing with the government.

Business
2:00 am
Fri April 6, 2012

The Last Word In Business

According to The Consumerist, the video game publisher received more than 250,000 reader votes for that distinction. It was singled out for deliberately holding back video game content so it can charge for it later, and for buying up small video game companies to squash competition.

Starting Up: Silicon Valley's Origins
1:26 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Intel Legends Moore And Grove: Making It Last

Intel's first hire (from left), Andy Grove, and Intel co-founders Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore in 1978, the 10th anniversary of the company. Grove is sitting on a graphical layout (a rubylith) of one of Intel's early microprocessors.
Courtesy of Intel

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 7:06 am

Part 3 of a series on Silicon Valley's history

In Silicon Valley, the spotlight is often on young entrepreneurs with fresh ideas that will change the world — people like Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, or Jack Dorsey of Twitter.

But for decades, two older titans of the high-tech industry thrived in that fast-paced world: Gordon Moore and Andy Grove of Intel.

Speaking recently in a rare joint interview, the two discussed how their company survived, and what they think of the current crop of Silicon Valley techies.

Intel's Odd Couple

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Education
12:30 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Calif. College Hikes Tuition For In-Demand Classes

After years of state budget cuts resulting in fewer classes, Santa Monica College has a solution. Starting this summer, certain classes will cost $180 per credit hour compared to the current price of $36 per credit hour. That's raised concerns of a two-tier system: one for those who have financial resources and another for those without.

Around the Nation
12:03 am
Fri April 6, 2012

'Three Cups Of Tea' Author To Repay Charity

The Montana attorney general's office has reached a settlement with author and philanthropist Greg Mortenson, and his non-profit Central Asia Institute. While a year-long probe found "serious internal problems" in the charity's management, the attorney general says the settlement allows CAI to continue with what he describes as a "worthwhile" mission.

Technology
1:00 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Phone Tracking Big Business For Cell Companies

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We learned several days ago, thanks to an ACLU Freedom of Information Act suit, that local law enforcement is often tracking cell phones without court orders to do so. The New York Times, which looked at documents that the ACLU received, reported that cell phone tracking has become widespread, and that it's also big business for cell phone companies.

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Economy
11:50 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Just How Strong Is The Job Market?

Job seekers attend a career fair in New York City. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke says the quick drop in unemployment might have been a reversal of overzealous cutbacks during the financial crisis.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 6, 2012 3:44 am

The monthly employment report Friday could help answer a key question about the economy: Will the recently strong job growth slow once employers finish replacing the people they fired during the depths of the recession?

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Monkey See
9:54 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Google's New Glasses And The War On Serendipity

A woman wears a design version of Google's intended smart glasses from its Project Glass.
Google AP

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Planet Money
7:10 am
Thu April 5, 2012

What America Buys

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 5:04 pm

See our earlier entries in this series: What America Sells To The World and What America Does For Work

How do ordinary Americans spend their money? And how has spending changed over time?

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Business
2:00 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Bond Auction Indicates Europe's Troubles Persist

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 4:33 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Spanish bonds.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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