Business

The Two-Way
12:45 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

Like Facebook, Apple Says It Was Attacked By Hackers

People walk past the Apple logo at the Apple Store at Grand Central Terminal in New York.
Timothy A. Clary AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 12:49 pm

Apple said today that the computers of some of its employees were attacked by hackers, who used the same vulnerability to access computers at Facebook.

All Things D reports:

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Digital Life
12:10 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

Social Media And Work: Is It Ever OK To Complain Online?

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 12:52 pm

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Celeste Headlee, filling in for Neal Conan from Washington. These days Facebook and Twitter are almost ubiquitous, and online our friends and family members are just as likely to talk about their jobs as their children and spouses.

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Politics
10:33 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Obama Again Calls For Balanced Plan For Cuts

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

Earlier this hour, President Obama spoke in the White House about the impacts of deep spending cuts that are scheduled to take effect a week from Friday. A group of first responders in uniforms stood behind him. The president said if Congress does not stop these cuts, these men and women in uniform will not be available to help communities respond to, and recover from disasters.

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The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Judge OKs Transocean's $1 Billion Civil Settlement Over Gulf Oil Spill

A federal judge in New Orleans has approved a $1 billion civil settlement over its role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill where 11 men died in April of 2010, the AP reports.

As we reported back in January, federal authorities blamed Transocean "for acting negligently when the rig's crew proceeded with maneuvers to the deep-sea well in the face of clear danger signals that oil and natural gas were flowing."

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Politics
9:39 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Sequestration: Are the Negations Just 'Theater?'

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 9:29 am

The Defense Department and other government agencies are preparing for the possible government budget cuts known as sequestration. Host Michel Martin talks with Lieutenant Colonel Elizabeth Robbins of the Defense Department and Washington Post 'Federal Diary' columnist Joe Davidson about who'll be affected.

Planet Money
9:29 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Beer Map: Two Giant Brewers, 210 Brands

Lam Thuy Vo / NPR

Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 4:10 pm

In the past decade, a few big beer companies went on a buying spree, spending some $195 billion to buy up brewers around the world, according to Bloomberg.

Beer drinkers can be excused for not noticing. Unlike, say, airlines, which fold their acquisitions into one big, global brand, big beer companies tend to keep the brands they buy in the market.

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Business
3:51 am
Tue February 19, 2013

India, Italy Accused Of Kickbacks In Defense Deal

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with begins with a corruption case in India.

India has dispatched investigators to Italy to examine allegations of kickbacks, kickbacks involving a $700 million defense deal. The case involves the sale of a dozen helicopters to India from one of Italy's largest industrial groups.

From New Delhi, NPR's Julie McCarthy has more on a case that's rattling the Indian government.

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NPR Story
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

Older Tech Workers Oppose Overhauling H-1B Visas

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 1:45 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Now, a look at one part of the immigration debate in Congress: a proposed increase in H1-B visas. Those are the visas that allow companies to hire skilled foreign workers. As NPR's Martin Kaste reports in today's "Business Bottom Line," offering more of those visas is controversial, especially among American tech workers of a certain age.

MARTIN KASTE, BYLINE: Here in Seattle, people still have fond memories of the 1990s tech boom.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Do you want a cup of coffee?

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NPR Story
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

OK. Let's stay with tablets, the digital kind. The kind we used to download apps. Our last word in business today is: apps aplenty.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

With the popularity of tablets and smartphones, people have been downloading about 10 apps per month onto their devices.

MONTAGNE: Great news for businesses, perhaps, except research from the business consulting firm Nuance Enterprise shows that the vast majority of those apps are quickly abandoned, especially those that are free.

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Business
3:41 am
Tue February 19, 2013

'Readers Digest' Fails To 'Adapt To Internet Speed'

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:33 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

One of the country's most famous magazines - the 91-year-old Reader's Digest - is filing for bankruptcy for the second time in less than four years. The digest originally offered just what the title promises - short versions of stories that had appeared in other publications. Now, it's filled with perky consumer news you can use, as well as a long-running advice columns, puzzles and jokes. Reader's Digest claims it still has 26 million readers worldwide, but the magazine's revenue took a big hit last year from falling sales overseas.

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All Tech Considered
1:01 am
Tue February 19, 2013

As 3-D Printing Become More Accessible, Copyright Questions Arise

A 3-D printed bust of Yoda is one of the more popular digital designs shared on Thingiverse.
Courtesy of StruveDesigns.com

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 2:13 pm

Many people think 3-D printing could help spark a manufacturing renaissance in the U.S. — even President Obama highlighted this technology in his State of the Union address last week.

But as 3-D printers and 3-D scanners get cheaper, this nascent industry could be roiled by battles over intellectual property.

Not so long ago, a good 3-D scanner that could create accurate digital models of objects in the real world cost more than $10,000. Then, Microsoft released the Kinect — the video game controller that allows you to play games by just waving your hands.

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U.S.
2:20 pm
Mon February 18, 2013

What Happens When Someone Else Gets Your Tax Refund

Todd Macy, a banker from Marin County, Calif., was the victim of identity theft. Nearly a year after filing his return, he's still waiting for his federal tax refund.
Courtesy of Todd Macy

Originally published on Mon February 18, 2013 4:27 pm

If you usually wait until April to file your taxes, you might want to hurry up — before identity thieves beat you to it. Using stolen names and Social Security numbers, these criminals file fake tax returns with false wage and withholding information. This generates big — and fraudulent — refunds, before the real taxpayer gets around to filing.

The Internal Revenue Service says it's busy working to combat what prosecutors call a fraud epidemic.

Most taxpayers don't have any idea something is wrong until they hit the send button on their taxes and get an error message.

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Europe
12:58 pm
Mon February 18, 2013

Greece's Economic Crisis Reveals Fault Lines In The Media

People read newspaper headlines in Athens. In 2009, there were 39 national dailies, 23 national Sunday papers, 14 national weekly papers and dozens of TV and radio stations for a population of 11 million.
Louisa Gouliamaki AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 18, 2013 5:05 pm

Three years of spiraling economic crisis in Greece have devastated every sector of the economy. The Greek media are among the hardest hit. Many newspapers and TV outlets have closed or are on the verge, and some 4,000 journalists have lost their jobs.

Many people believe the country's news media have failed to cover the crisis — and lost credibility along the way. And many Greek journalists acknowledge that a massive conflict of interest sooner or later had to explode.

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Business
4:42 am
Mon February 18, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Mon February 18, 2013 5:22 am

Big in the 90s, the Tamagotchi is a handheld digital device that's a robotic pet. Owners press certain buttons to feed it, to play with it and get it medical attention. If neglected, the digital pet dies. The company is releasing a new breed of pet — a mobile app.

Business
4:42 am
Mon February 18, 2013

G20 Leaders Pledge To Avert Currency War

A meeting of finance ministers from the 20 leading industrial and developing nations wrapped up over the weekend in Moscow. The nations agreed to not to target the exchange rates of their respective currencies amid concerns that competitive devaluation could spark a currency war.

The Salt
1:28 am
Mon February 18, 2013

Growing Resistance, Oregon Hazelnuts Battle Blight

Oregon State University has been growing a variety of hazelnut trees over the years to develop blight-resistant breeds.
Rebecca McCluskey

Originally published on Mon February 18, 2013 4:42 am

Although Oregon is known for many exports — from timber to hipster irony — few people are aware that it's actually the country's leading source of hazelnuts.

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It's All Politics
9:27 am
Sun February 17, 2013

White House Warns Of Sequestration's Effects

White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough at the White House on Jan. 25.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Sun February 17, 2013 12:08 pm

The White House and congressional Democrats are sounding the alarm bells over the consequences of the sequester, the across-the-board cuts to the budget that are scheduled to go into effect in March.

White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said the cuts would offset "pretty good" economic activity over the past few months. He said President Obama had a plan to cut an addition $1.5 trillion from the deficit.

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Business
3:03 pm
Sat February 16, 2013

High-Speed Rail Buzz Overpowers Daily Chug Of Freight Trains

A Union Pacific freight train passes over a grade crossing in Elmhurst, Ill.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

Originally published on Sat February 16, 2013 5:12 pm

From the steam engine to visions of a national high-speed rail system, railroads have made their mark on American culture.

In his first term, President Obama promised to create a national system of high-speed rail, though he was scarcely the first politician to have done so. The January 2010 stimulus bill allocated $8 billion for high-speed rail projects, but Congress rejected federal funding for it.

In his State of the Union address on Tuesday, the president reiterated the goal of having passenger rail rise again.

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Planet Money
1:18 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Should The U.S. Import More Doctors?

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:52 pm

People around the world want the same thing from their doctors. First, do no harm. Second, take a look at this weird bump and tell me if I should get worried.

The job is basically the same in many countries around the world. But the pay is wildly different. The median salary for U.S. doctors is about $250,000 a year. In Western Europe, it's less than half that. In developing countries, the salaries are even lower.

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Business
1:10 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

As Cruise Industry Grows, So Have Its Problems

Coast Guard patrols near the cruise ship Carnival Triumph in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. The Carnival Triumph lost propulsion power after an engine room fire a day earlier.
Jason Chambers AFP/Getty Images

It's been a rough voyage for the cruise-line industry in the past few years.

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All Tech Considered
11:37 am
Fri February 15, 2013

DIY Broadband Comes To The English Countryside

iStockphoto.com

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Politics
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Automatic Budget Cuts Near As Democrats, GOP Stand Firm

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

With Congress headed for a recess, prospects are dimming for a deal to keep the nation from falling off the next fiscal cliff - sequestration. That's the term for automatic spending cuts that go into effect March 1.

NPR's Mara Liasson explains how the White House and Congress got to this impasse and why it's so hard to get past it.

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NPR Story
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Effects Of Automatic Spending Cuts Become Clearer

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

And I'm Linda Wertheimer.

As we've been hearing, clock is ticking on the sequester. That is the Washington term for the across-the-board cuts that will take effect March 1, unless Congress acts to put them off.

The impact the $85 billion reduction in government programs could have became a bit clearer yesterday, as NPR's Brian Naylor reports.

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Business
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Carnival's Crippled Ship Expected To Hurt Cruise Business

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:40 am

This week's debacle on the Carnival Triumph is a setback that may cost the company as much as $80 million and hurt the industry's image. Carnival says passengers who were on the Triumph the last five days without power were miserable, but at least they were safe. Industry watchers say Carnival generally has handled the mishap well, but that the industry may need to rethink how it deal with events like power outages on floating cities than can carry more than 5,000 people.

Economy
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Eurozone Economies Declined In 2012

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Europe's rocky economy.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

WERTHEIMER: It was a tough three months for the eurozone at the end of last year. The area fell deeper into recession.

And as NPR's John Ydstie reports, it's expected to remain in recession well into 2013.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: The output of the eurozone fell six-tenths of a percent in the final three months of last year, according to a report from Eurostat. The decline translates to an economy contracting at a 2.3 percent annual rate.

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Business
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

How Will Proposed Merger Affect Airline Passengers?

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Conventional wisdom says fewer airlines mean higher fares and fewer flights. But experts say the American Airlines-U.S. Airways proposed merger is a mixed bag. Past mergers haven't led to significantly higher fares, but will this time be different?

Business
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Federal Charges Filed In Ohio Dumping Case

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In Youngstown, Ohio, the owner of an oil and natural gas drilling company has been charged with a violating the Federal Clean Water Act. He's accused of dumping tens of thousands of gallons of drilling waste water into a storm sewer that eventually runs into a local river.

From member station WKSU, M.L. Schultze has more.

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NPR Story
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:39 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Let's catch up on yesterday's $23 billion bid to buy H.J. Heinz Company. Warren Buffett is one of the investors. The Oracle of Omaha is famous for snatching up American staples, like ketchup.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Lesser known is one of Buffet's partners in the acquisition - a Brazilian, equally found of American companies.

Today's last word in business is: another oracle?

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Economy
12:31 am
Fri February 15, 2013

In Kansas, A 'Glide Path' To No Income Taxes. Will It Work?

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, shown delivering the State of the State address last month, is pushing to get rid of the state's income tax, which has some Republicans concerned.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 7:47 am

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has put the state on what he calls a "glide path to zero" income tax. But that glide path is far from being clear or smooth.

On the face of it, Brownback seems to enjoy a remarkably strong political position. He's a conservative Republican, flanked by GOP supermajorities in both legislative chambers. His allies helped purge moderate Republicans from the state Senate in last year's election.

"I think the road is open," Brownback says. "I think we do provide an alternative model. I think we do provide a red-state model."

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Business
3:40 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Berkshire Hathaway And Private Equity Firm To Buy Heinz For $23 Billion

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and the private equity firm 3G Capital are set buy ketchup giant Heinz.

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