Business

Asia
3:26 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Autobot$ Rule: Why Transformers 4 Is China's Box Office Champ

People gather in front of a giant figure of Optimus Prime displayed along the Hong Kong harbor for the world premiere of Transformers: Age of Extinction on June 19.
Kin Cheung AP

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 9:32 am

This summer, Age of Extinction, the fourth installment in the Transformers series, demolished box office records in China, the world's second-largest film market behind the U.S.

Although the movie got poor reviews on both sides of the Pacific, it managed to unseat China's former top-grossing film, Avatar, and haul in more than $300 million. People like Wang Yitao, a 32-year-old Shanghai government worker, are a big reason why.

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Planet Money
3:13 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Detroit Struggles To Get People Who Bailed On Water Bills To Pay

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 6:04 am

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

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NPR Story
3:07 am
Mon August 11, 2014

BuzzFeed Receives $50 Million Investment

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 6:04 am

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

NPR Story
3:07 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Items Up For Sale At Unclaimed Baggage Center Reflect Trends

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 6:04 am

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

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NPR Story
3:07 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Tourists Pay To Be Locked Up In Budapest's Cellars

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 6:04 am

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

Around the Nation
1:30 am
Mon August 11, 2014

Critics Blame Airbnb For San Francisco's Housing Problems

Demonstrators in San Francisco have been protesting outside apartment buildings that have units rented through online brokers.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 12:08 pm

Online rental brokers like Airbnb, VRBO and Flipkey in San Francisco may be finding some success renting to visitors on a nightly basis, but people concerned about a shrinking rental market have turned to legal action and protests.

In the city's North Beach neighborhood, for example, protesters recently gathered around a three-unit apartment with flats an online broker rents to vacationers. This used to be the rent-controlled home of elderly tenants until out-of-town investors bought the building and evicted the residents.

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Around the Nation
3:12 pm
Sun August 10, 2014

A New Golden Age For 'Silver Bullets'? Airstreams Make A Comeback

Airstream travel trailers bring to mind the golden age of camping. But they're popular in the modern era, too: Airstream's trailer production is at its highest level since the 1970s, and travel trailer sales this year alone are up 33 percent.
Courtesy of Airstream

Originally published on Sun August 10, 2014 3:41 pm

Step inside an Airstream travel trailer and you'll step into a different era.

The iconic trailers have the unmistakable curved aluminum exterior, giving them the nickname "the silver bullet." They look more like the fuselage of an old airplane than a modern RV.

Above all, Airstreams bring back memories of the golden days of camping. But the company is still manufacturing new trailers out of Jackson Center, Ohio. You can pay up to $100,000 for one; even the smaller trailers, the Bambis, can cost up to $45,000.

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The Sunday Conversation
8:16 am
Sun August 10, 2014

Entrepreneur Looks Beyond Africa's Problems To Focus On Solutions

Vital Sounouvou is an African entrepreneur who founded Exportunity.com, a company to help promote trade in Africa.
Courtesy of Vital Sounouvou

Originally published on Mon August 11, 2014 9:04 am

Each week, Weekend Edition Sunday brings listeners an unexpected side of the news by talking with someone personally affected by the stories making headlines.

Vital Sounouvou comes from Benin, a small country in West Africa. To help promote global trade in Africa, he founded the company Exportunity.com after some sobering advice from a college professor.

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All Tech Considered
3:26 am
Sun August 10, 2014

Virtual Reality's Next Hurdle: Overcoming 'Sim Sickness'

Attendees play a video game wearing Oculus Rift virtual reality headsets at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.
Jae C. Hong AP

Originally published on Sun August 10, 2014 10:31 am

After a decade out of the spotlight, virtual reality has returned to pop culture — and with a vengeance.

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The Two-Way
11:35 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Shazam! Now You Look Like A Better Borrower

Fair Isaac Corp. says its FICO credit-score calculations will no longer include information about bills that have been paid off or settled with a collection agency.
Courtney Keating iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 3:42 pm

Credit scores can have a huge impact on your life, largely determining your ability to get a home mortgage, a car loan or credit cards.

Soon, tens of millions of Americans will find their three-digit credit scores levitating upward — and without having to pay any new bills.

What's the magic?

It's a simple trick: Fair Isaac Corp. said Thursday that it is changing its widely used FICO credit-score calculations. The company plans to lighten up on consumers, making it easier for millions of borrowers to look better on paper.

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Shots - Health News
10:50 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Investors Pump Prospects Of Unproven Ebola Treatments

Tobacco plants grown at an Owensboro, Ky., biotechnology firm were used to help produce an experimental serum used to treat two Americans infected with Ebola.
AP

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 11:24 am

Interest in drugs that might be used to treat Ebola virus has hit a fever pitch, but the buzz isn't simply about fear of Ebola, or about saving lives in poor nations of West Africa. It's also about money.

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The Two-Way
10:49 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Malaysia's Money-Losing Airline Will Become National Property

Flight attendants of Malaysia Airlines walk past their company's counter Friday at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia.
Chong Voon Chung Xinhua/Landov

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 11:46 am

Malaysia plans to nationalize its flag carrier Malaysia Airlines after back-to-back disasters and a 12-year stretch that saw the company restructured four times. NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports from Beijing that another complete restructuring will follow, in a bid to pull the airline out of its financial tailspin.

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NPR Story
4:05 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Fire Prevention Bear To Celebrate Birthday

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 9:15 am

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

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And our Last Word in business is a bear.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

A bear with his own ZIP Code - bear who talks but only says one thing.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

SAM ELLIOTT: (As Smokey Bear) Only you can prevent wildfires.

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NPR Story
4:05 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Troubles Compound For Malaysia Airlines

Originally published on Fri August 8, 2014 9:15 am

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

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Technology
3:39 am
Fri August 8, 2014

When Hackers Test For Flaws, They Might Earn Cash — Or Threats

Security expert Jose Molina discovered he could control "every device in every room" of a luxury hotel in China.
Aarti Shahani NPR

Originally published on Sat August 9, 2014 2:19 pm

To hack or not to hack? That's a hot question in Las Vegas this week. Many attendees at the two conferences in town, Black Hat and Def Con, are security researchers: people who poke at websites, smartphones and other wireless devices to look for gaping security holes that companies should fix. But even when they're hacking with good intent, they can get into big trouble.

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Business
2:45 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

White House Seeks Ways To Go It Alone In Keeping Companies Stateside

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 5:43 pm

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

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Technology
2:33 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

To Solve Cybercrime, Some In Silicon Valley Ditch The Data

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 5:43 pm

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

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Business
3:26 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Buick Regal Competes With German Luxury Cars

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 6:09 am

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

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Next we'll explore a contradiction at General Motors. GM has had a terrible year in the news. In recent years, in fact, the company has recalled more cars than it has made.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Business
3:25 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Italy Unexpectedly Slips Into Recession

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 6:09 am

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

NPR Story
2:59 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Monkey Selfie Turns Into A Copyright Fight

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 6:09 am

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

The Salt
1:25 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Will Americans Buy Bug Snacks? Maybe ... If They're Funny And Cute

Packages of edible insects lie on a display table at the Denver County Fair.
Luke Runyon/KUNC

Originally published on Wed August 13, 2014 1:50 pm

Insects can be a great source of protein, and in many parts of the world, people gobble them up.

But here in the U.S., a certain "ick factor" has kept consumers from eating crickets, locusts and mealworms. To combat the ickiness and convert skeptical consumers, bug-food advocates are trying a specific marketing tactic: be clever and cute.

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The Two-Way
5:48 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Bank Of America 'Close' To Settlement With Justice Department

Bank of America would pay more than $16 billion in a settlement that it's close to finalizing with the Justice Department.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Bank of America and the Justice department are "close" to finalizing a settlement of $16 billion to $17 billion over allegations of mortgage-related abuses.

The Wall Street Journal first reported on the outlines of a deal, which was then confirmed to NPR by a source familiar with the talks.

A final announcement may come next week or later, NPR's Jim Zarroli reports for our Newscast Desk.

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The Two-Way
2:34 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Donald Trump Sues To Remove His Name From Atlantic City Casinos

The Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City is planning to close its doors on Sept. 16.
Mel Evans AP

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 4:02 pm

Donald Trump once promoted Atlantic City's casino and entertainment business. He no longer wants his name associated with it.

The real estate baron has sued to have his name taken off two casinos, the Trump Plaza and the Trump Taj Mahal.

"I want it off both of them," Trump told the Associated Press. "I've been away from Atlantic City for many years. People think we operate [the company], and we don't. It's not us. It's not me."

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Economy
2:04 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Construction Industry Missing Key Tool: Skilled Workers

After laying off roughly 2 million workers during the recession, the construction industry may not have enough crews to keep up with demand for building projects.
Brennan Linsley AP

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 5:56 pm

It's a beautiful day and Jeremy Smith, the business manager for a school district in northern Wyoming, is showing off the new Tongue River Elementary School — or at least the plot of land where the school should be.

"What you're going to see when you get up here a little bit closer is you are going to just see pasture," Smith says.

The school was supposed to be under construction by now, but last month state officials said they didn't have the money.

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Africa
2:04 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

How Anti-Bribery Laws In Europe Are Bringing U.S. Investors To Africa

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 5:29 pm

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

Business
2:04 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Who's The Boss? Labor Board Says It's McDonald's, As Much As Franchisee

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 5:29 pm

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

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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The Two-Way
1:29 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Walgreens Drops Plan To Move Headquarters — And Profits — Overseas

Last month, demonstrators protested the possibility of Walgreens moving its corporate headquarters overseas at a Chicago location of the pharmacy.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 4:46 pm

Walgreens Co. will complete its merger with Alliance Boots, a British pharmacy, but it will not move its headquarters overseas to reduce its U.S. tax bill.

Walgreens will pay $15 billion, including $5 billion in cash, to purchase the remaining 55 percent of Alliance Boots. The two companies began merging in 2012.

Walgreens had flirted with the idea of moving its headquarters from Chicago to the United Kingdom to avoid paying corporate taxes in the U.S.

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The Salt
4:13 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Missouri Constitutional Amendment Pits Farmer Against Farmer

Jeff Jones and his daughters feed grain to their foraging cattle once a day in Callaway County, Mo. They're concerned about the health and environmental effects a potential hog farm next door might have.
Kristofor Husted/KBIA

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 10:33 am

Agriculture is a cornerstone of the Midwest economy. In some states, it may even become a right.

That's what unofficially happened in Missouri on Tuesday when voters approved the so-called "right to farm" in the form of an amendment to the state Constitution. (With less than a half of a percent vote differential, a recount is likely.) And the controversial provision could be a model for Constitutional additions in other big ag states.

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Business
4:11 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Feds Criticize Big Banks' Plans To Avoid Next Fiscal Crisis

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 5:45 am

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

Africa
3:13 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Summit Focuses Investors On Africa's Energy Opportunities

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 5:45 am

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

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

More than 50 African heads of state are here in Washington D.C. for a summit this week.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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