Business

NPR Story
2:59 am
Mon June 30, 2014

British Pop Star Donates Alamo Artifacts

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 11:32 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, BYLINE: And our last word in Business today is, (singing) I can see it coming to the Alamo tonight.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Last week the owner of the largest private collection of artifacts from the Alamo turned them over in a ceremony at the site of the epic 1836 battle.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

JERRY PATTERSON: Give a huge, ruckus, boisterous welcome to our friend Mr. Phil Collins.

(APPLAUSE)

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Parallels
1:43 am
Mon June 30, 2014

In Shetland, Oil Shapes Debate Over Scottish Independence

Scotland's offshore oil platforms in the North Sea generate significant wealth for the nation — especially for the Shetland Islands, where oil tanker traffic boosts the local economy.
Andy Buchanan - WPA Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 11:32 am

In September, Scotland will vote on whether to break away from the United Kingdom and declare independence.

So far, the debate has been largely about money: One poll says most voters would switch their vote if it meant an extra 500 pounds, or around $800 dollars.

North Sea oil and gas are central to this economic debate — nowhere more so than in the remote Shetland Islands, many miles from the Scottish mainland, where tankers carrying North Sea oil come ashore. The oil has transformed both the local and national economy.

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Shots - Health News
1:25 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Online Psychotherapy Gains Fans And Raises Privacy Concerns

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 11:32 am

Lauren Kay has never met her therapist in person. The 24-year-old entrepreneur found it difficult to take time off work for appointments.

So she started seeing a psychotherapist online.

"It's definitely been different," she says. Kay, who lives in New York, found her counselor through an online therapy service called Pretty Padded Room. When it's time for an appointment, all she has to do is log in to the website, click a link and start video chatting.

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Environment
1:24 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Drought Has Drillers Running After Shrinking California Water Supply

Juan de La Cruz operates a drilling rig that is probing for groundwater 2,500 feet beneath Fresno County.
Sasha Khokha for NPR

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 1:02 pm

Steve Arthur practically lives out of his truck these days.

He runs one of Fresno's busiest well-drilling companies, and hustles up and down the highway to check on drilling rigs that run 24 hours a day.

"It's officially getting crazy," Arthur says. "We go and we go, but it just seems like we can't go fast enough."

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Business
4:45 pm
Sun June 29, 2014

For Tipped Workers, A Different Minimum Wage Battle

States may have their own higher wage laws, but the federal minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 an hour.
AP

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 6:14 am

The federal minimum wage for tipped workers has been $2.13 since 1991. That pay rate tends to get lost in the larger debate over whether to raise the national minimum wage for nontipped workers, which is $7.25 an hour.

In theory, the money from tips should make up the difference in pay — and then some. But according to a White House report, tipped workers are more than twice as likely as other workers to experience poverty.

Living On Tips

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U.S.
3:05 pm
Sun June 29, 2014

Employees' Pay Cut By Denied Overtime, Deductions For Equipment

Originally published on Sun June 29, 2014 4:11 pm

Thousands of Americans each year lose portions of their wages to wage theft. NPR's Arun Rath talks with Tia Koonse, of the UCLA Labor Center, about efforts to curtail the problem.

Economy
10:31 am
Sun June 29, 2014

Housing Market Fake-Outs Stump Economists

Homebuilding remains slumped at levels not seen since WWII.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Sun June 29, 2014 1:13 pm

Many homebuyers have been throwing down cold hard cash for their entire house purchase in recent years. Some are baby-boomers who sold a bigger house and are downsizing. Some are investors. Others are from outside the U.S.

"Top of the list in terms of cash sales in the first quarter was Florida, with 64 percent of all sales going to cash buyers, followed by New York, 59 percent; Alabama, 56 percent," says Daren Blomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac, which did a study on cash purchases.

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Media
8:54 am
Sun June 29, 2014

Advertisers Come Out Of The Closet, Openly Courting Gay Consumers

Boyfriends, or roommates? Decades ago, commercials like this 1997 Volkswagen Golf ad left homosexual relationships implied, in a sort of secret code. These days, gay-friendly advertisers don't feel the need to be covert.
YouTube

Originally published on Sun June 29, 2014 1:16 pm

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Business
2:59 pm
Sat June 28, 2014

Australia Joins Flood Of Global Investment In Silicon Valley

Originally published on Sat June 28, 2014 4:22 pm

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

If you're just joining us, it's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR West. I'm Arun Rath. Silicon Valley's dynamic and flush economy is attracting investors from all over the world. The Chinese e-commerce giant, Alibaba, has already invested millions into the ride-sharing company Lyft. Russian investors have large stakes in companies like Facebook and Twitter.

Now Australia is getting in on the action. Carlos Watson is the co-founder of the online magazine, Ozy. And he joins us now. Carlos, what kind of investments are we talking about here?

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Technology
2:59 pm
Sat June 28, 2014

Harley Hopes An Electric Hog Will Appeal To Young, Urban Riders

Harley-Davidson riders reveal Project LiveWire, the first electric Harley-Davidson motorcycle, during a ride across New York City's Manhattan Bridge on June 23.
Neilson Barnard Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 28, 2014 4:22 pm

Many motorcycle riders covet the distinctive growl of a Harley-Davidson — and sometimes even add extra-loud exhaust pipes to amp up the sound.

But the motorcycle maker has now rolled out a prototype bike that makes more of a whisper than a rumble. It's a sporty-looking model called LiveWire, and it's powered by batteries.

Harley-Davidson plans to take its prototype electric motorcycle to more than 30 cities over the next few months. Sometime after that, the company will decide whether to put LiveWire on the market.

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Your Money
12:27 pm
Sat June 28, 2014

Being 'Rich' Is More Common Than You Think, At Least Temporarily

By the time they turn 60 years old, 21 percent of U.S. adults have enjoyed an annual household income of above $250,000 for at least one year of their working lives.
iStockphoto.com

We tend to think of income groups such as the "top 1 percent" as being relatively stable collectives, particularly in nations like the U.S. that, despite popular rhetoric, enjoy rather low levels of social mobility.

But the truth is more complicated, and more volatile. The average American's chances of attaining the American dream, at least in terms of a high income, are greater than you might think, but so are the odds of waking up from that dream.

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The Two-Way
9:25 am
Sat June 28, 2014

Following High Court Decision, Aereo Suspends Operations

Aereo, a Web service that provides television shows online, lost a Supreme Court case Wednesday, as the justices ruled it violates copyright law.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 28, 2014 9:47 am

Aereo, the company that lets subscribers watch TV stations' video that it routes onto the Internet, has decided to suspend its operation.

The decision comes a few days after the Supreme Court handed the company a major loss by ruling that, like cable companies, it was performing the work of television networks publicly.

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All Tech Considered
3:13 am
Sat June 28, 2014

Tech Week: Google's Plans, Aereo's Loss And Occupied Stalls

An attendee wears a Google Android Mascot hat during the Google I/O Developers Conference in San Francisco.
Stephen Lam Getty Images

It's officially summer, but there's no slowdown on the technology news front. Here's your weekly roundup of notable stories in tech, from the team at NPR and beyond.

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The Salt
3:39 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Got Leftovers To Share? In Germany, There's A Website For That

Europeans throw away 90 million tons of food each year, including these vegetables pulled from waste bins of an organic supermarket in Berlin. A new German website aims to connect surplus food with people who want it.
Fabrizio Bensch Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 8:46 am

Child psychiatrist Vero Buschmann says she was looking for a way to get rid of leftovers without having to throw them away. At the same time, the Berlin resident wanted to meet new people.

She found a nonprofit website in Germany that allows her to do both. On a recent evening, her doorbell rings and she buzzes Franzi Zimmerman in to her fifth-floor apartment.

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The Two-Way
11:51 am
Fri June 27, 2014

U.K. Loses Big Vote On The Future Of Europe — Now What?

On the sidelines of the EU summit in Brussels, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron said the choice of Jean-Claude Juncker to head the European Commission marks "a bad day for Europe."
John Thys AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 12:30 pm

The European Union made history Friday by bringing three of Russia's neighbors — Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova — under its economic tent.

The eastward expansion of trade agreements will push European influence deep into a region that Russia would like to dominate. In light of recent Russian aggression in Ukraine, that's a big deal.

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The Salt
8:38 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Chemist With Visual Flair Answers Burning Food Science Questions

Courtesy of Compound Interest

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 1:24 pm

Chemistry teachers don't need to go the way of Breaking Bad's Walter White and make methamphetamine if they're looking for a compelling side gig.

Andy Brunning, a high school chemistry teacher in the U.K., makes beautiful infographics on everyday chemistry on his blog, Compound Interest. Thanks in part to the American Chemical Society, which has turned several of his posts into videos, his clever visuals have been going viral.

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Remembrances
3:17 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Howard Baker, Former Senate Majority Leader, Dies At 88

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 5:59 am

Former Senate Majority Leader and White House Chief of Staff Howard Baker died on Thursday at age 88. Baker was one of the key players in Ronald Reagan's historic tax and spending cuts.

Business
3:10 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Organist Celebrates 25 Years Playing Wanamaker Organ

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 5:59 am

Peter Conte has serenaded shoppers in Philadelphia for 2 shows a day, 6 days a week for more than 2 decades. On Saturday, those attending Wanamaker Organ Day will hear him and the refurbished organ.

Business
3:10 am
Fri June 27, 2014

White House To Extend Affordable Housing Program

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 5:59 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The Salt
1:21 am
Fri June 27, 2014

As Pig Virus Spreads, The Price Of Pork Continues To Rise

Michael Yezzi raises 1,000 pigs a year in Shushan, N.Y. He's worried about how to keep his farm safe from a disease that has no proven cure.
Abbie Fentress Swanson for NPR

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 6:31 am

If you're bringing home the bacon, you may have noticed a price tag inching upward.

Consumers are paying nearly 13 percent more for pork at the supermarket than they were this time last year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. A deadly pig disease is partially to blame.

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The Two-Way
3:56 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

GM Stops Selling Late-Model Chevy Cruzes; Recall Expected

A Chevrolet Cruze is displayed at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, in January.
Carlos Osorio AP

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 6:13 am

General Motors has issued an order to stop selling 2013 and 2014 model years of the Chevrolet Cruze compact car because of air bags that might not inflate properly. The automaker has identified 33,000 vehicles, mostly in the U.S. and Canada, with the potential problem and is expected to recall those already sold.

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Business
2:20 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

To Get Their Cars In Films, Automakers Turn To A Movie Motor Wrangler

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 5:10 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's summer car buying season and movie blockbuster season. And here's where these two things merge. "Transformers Age Of Extinction" premieres this week. It's an example of how automakers use movies to market cars. Once upon a time, say, when Mustang convertibles ruled the road, car companies didn't have to do that. Here's NPR's Sonari Glinton.

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Around the Nation
2:20 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Archery Tag Works To Expand Its Target Audience

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 5:10 pm

The popularity of movies like Hunger Games and Disney's Brave has led more people to pick up bows and arrows. One product line that's benefited from this trend even lets customers shoot arrows at other people — without harming them. As Stan Jastrzebski of WBAA reports, the Indiana inventor of Archery Tag says his audience is more than just young adults.

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All Tech Considered
2:20 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

The Binge-Watch Before The Purge, Now That Aereo Is Likely Done

Chet Kanojia is the founder and CEO of Aereo, which is fighting big broadcasters over its tiny antenna.
Elise Hu NPR

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 10:35 am

The Supreme Court gave broadcasters a big win this week in their battle against the startup service Aereo. Subscribers in select cities have been watching and recording live broadcast TV with Aereo, at a cost of $8 to $12 a month. But what happens to consumers now that the service is illegal?

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Business
1:30 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Transcript: Statement From Aereo CEO And Founder On Supreme Court Decision

The following statement was made by Aereo CEO and Founder, Chet Kanojia in response to the Supreme Court decision that would essentially force Aereo to negotiate retransmission agreements with broadcasters to stay in business:

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Business
11:47 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Business Owners Have 'A Special Challenge' To Help Working Families

Business leaders and policymakers gathered at the White House to discuss how working families can get ahead. One participant explains how he feels companies can stay competitive and help families.

The Two-Way
8:59 am
Thu June 26, 2014

In Narrow Ruling, Supreme Court Invalidates 3 Obama Appointments

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 12:54 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that three appointments President Obama made in 2012 to the National Labor Relations Board are not valid because they were not approved by the Senate, which was in pro forma session at the time.

In a unanimous decision, the justices said the Constitution's recess-appointments clause gave Congress the power to decide when it is in recess, and that there was no recess when Obama acted. The case is National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning.

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All Tech Considered
8:57 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Facebook's Diversity Numbers Are Out, And They're What You Expect

Numbers out Wednesday show almost 7 out of 10 Facebook staffers are male.
Photo Illustration: Joel Saget AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 1:42 pm

The summer of tech company demographic data dumps continues apace. Facebook is the latest big firm to share its staff's racial and gender breakdowns, following similar releases from Google and Yahoo. Other tech firms NPR has reached out to say they are having conversations about whether they will do the same.

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Parallels
5:15 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Oil Off The Coast Of Ibiza? Protesters Don't Want To Know

Ibiza
David Ramos Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 9:03 am

Ibiza — famous for wild, all-night parties — is home to some of the Mediterranean's most pristine beaches and thriving marine ecosystems. But these could soon be endangered by more than the island's hedonism.

Spain's central government is considering whether to allow oil prospecting near the coasts of Ibiza and its neighboring island, Formentera. The proposed survey area is about 1,500 square miles and starts around 30 miles off the coastline.

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Europe
5:03 am
Thu June 26, 2014

In Flanders Fields, Europeans Still Learning How To Get Along

British Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a speech next to German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a technology Trade fair March 10 in Hanover, Germany.
Nigel Treblin Getty Images

On Thursday, European leaders are gathering in Belgium to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I — the bloodbath that ended millions of European lives.

And killed 116,516 U.S. troops. And laid the groundwork for World War II.

The centenary ceremony in Ypres, Belgium, provides a good reminder that whenever relations among European nations break bad, the rest of us need to pay attention.

It's time to listen up again.

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