Business

Business
3:31 am
Tue December 18, 2012

The Latest On 'Fiscal Cliff' Talks

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 4:40 am

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner met in person again Monday to discuss a budget deal that would undo the massive tax hikes and spending cuts set to take effect Jan. 1. The Republican leader has offered to increase tax rates on people who make over $1 million. The president has responded with a counteroffer.

Business
3:25 am
Tue December 18, 2012

'Fiscal Cliff' Interferes With Year-End Tax Plans

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 5:12 am

David Greene talks to tax expert Mary Beth Franklin about year-end tax moves to benefit your personal balance sheet. Franklin is a tax planner and contributing editor to Investment News.

Shootings In Newtown, Conn.
2:26 am
Tue December 18, 2012

Coverage Rapid, And Often Wrong, In Tragedy's Early Hours

Flowers, candles and stuffed animals make up a makeshift memorial in Newtown, Conn., on Monday. Much of the initial news coverage of Friday's events was later found to be inaccurate.
Eric Thayer Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 12:09 pm

Nearly everyone reported so many things wrong in the first 24 hours after the Sandy Hook shootings that it's hard to single out any one news organization or reporter for criticism.

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Economy
1:20 am
Tue December 18, 2012

The Downsides Of Living In An Oil Boom Town

Cyndy Aafedt (left) owns the El Rancho hotel in Williston, N.D. Jobs in town have been hard to fill. Her employee, Mary Joy Hardt (right), who is from the Philippines, is one of many people with J-1 visas helping to fill retail, hotel and restaurant job openings here.
Meg Luther Lindholm for NPR

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 9:18 am

The population boom in Williston, N.D., has been a blessing and a curse for many local businesses. Williston, the fastest growing small city in America, is enjoying an oil boom and has seen its population double in the past two years.

At the city's brand new McDonald's, manager Vern Brekhus struggles every day to maintain his staff of nearly 100 workers.

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The Two-Way
4:31 pm
Mon December 17, 2012

Investors Shun Gun Makers As Gun-Control Talk Increases

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 10:00 am

(Scroll down for a Tuesday morning update.)

On Wall Street, investors appear to be listening closely to the growing talk in Washington about curbing assault weapons.

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The Two-Way
11:58 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Girls, Boys And Toys: Rethinking Stereotypes In What Kids Play With

Hasbro's pink Easy-Bake Oven is under fire for reinforcing gender stereotypes.
Peggy Turbett The Plain Dealer/Landov

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 4:50 am

We've been focusing on some serious news today. Here's something on the lighter side.

A New Jersey teenager who launched a campaign to get Hasbro to make a gender-neutral Easy-Bake Oven is expected to meet with the toy company Monday afternoon.

Update at 5:40 p.m. ET. Easy-Bake Oven goes gender-neutral:

After meeting with Pope, Hasbro now says it plans to introduce a new black, silver, and blue model of the oven, and to feature boys in ads for the product. Our original post continues:

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Economy
9:44 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Why Not Raise Capital Gains Taxes?

As a part of the series, "Why Not," Tell Me More is looking at policies that were once untouchable but now may be on the table. Today, NPR Correspondent Tamara Keith and Emory Law Professor Dorothy Brown dig into the pros-and-cons of raising taxes on capital gains and dividends.

Business
3:17 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Toy Industry Faces Gender Issues

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 4:54 am

David Greene talks to toy analyst Sean McGowan about Lego's new line for girls, gender-neutral Easy Bake Ovens and other gender issues facing the toy industry. McGowan is a senior analyst at Needham & Company.

Business
3:17 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 5:41 am

When Apple launched it's iPhone 5 in China Friday, it sold more than 2 million phones in three days. It's great news for the company as there have been some concerns about Apple's long-term outlook and its stock has taken a hit in recent days.

Business
3:17 am
Mon December 17, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 5:46 am

A cleaning crew found the coins after the death of a reclusive man in Carson City, Nevada, earlier this year. When the man was found to have no relatives in the area, researchers followed the trail to a teacher in California. She just needs certification from a judge to claim the chunk of change.

NPR Story
3:09 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Examining Child Tax Credit

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 5:05 am

There's still no budget deal to prevent the automatic spending cuts and tax increases scheduled to go into effect at the end of this year. There are some tax deductions, credits and other breaks lawmakers are weighing in this budget debate.

Afghanistan
1:32 am
Mon December 17, 2012

Afghan Woman Carves Out An Entrepreneurial Niche

Fatima Jafari, owner of Bamboo Wood Industries, listens to a worker in her factory in Kabul, Afghanistan. Jafari is one of the few female entrepreneurs in an industrial trade in the country, despite international efforts to support women in business.
Sultan Faizy NPR

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 7:49 am

Behind a tall metal gate in a nondescript nook of Kabul sits the Bamboo Wood Industries factory. It's not a place you're likely to stumble across by accident. Inside, a handful of men are cutting, painting and assembling desks and cabinets. The pieces being made are chocolate brown and quite modern looking.

Sitting in a spartan, unheated office above the factory floor is Fatima Jafari, the owner of the company. The 30-something woman started the business a little over a year ago.

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All Tech Considered
1:31 am
Mon December 17, 2012

New Car Features May Keep Older Drivers Out Of The Big Yellow Taxi

Former British politician Ann Widdecombe tests Ford's active park assist feature in the U.K. in July 2011.
Ford Motor Co.

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 2:08 pm

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Business
4:48 am
Sat December 15, 2012

How Does 'Right-To-Work Affect Unions?

Originally published on Mon December 17, 2012 1:15 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The right-to-work legislation that was passed, and signed into law, in Michigan this week has been called a staggering blow to organized labor. Such laws allow workers to refuse to join a union and pay union dues, even if they're employed in a unionized workplace. Twenty-four states now have similar laws but Michigan, as the home of the U.S. auto industry, is considered one of the foundries of the American labor movement.

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The Two-Way
6:48 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Inflation Is In Check; Consumer Prices Fell 0.3 Percent In November

Sign of the times: Markdowns at a discount clothing store in New York City last month. Such stiff competition for consumers' dollars is helping to keep inflation in check.
Spencer Platt Getty Images
  • From 'Morning Edition': Does The CPI Need A Fix?

A sharp drop in the cost of a gallon of gasoline helped pull consumer prices down 0.3 percent in November, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.

According to BLS, gas prices plunged 7.4 percent last month.

Excluding the food and energy sectors, the so-called core rate of inflation rose just 0.1 percent.

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Business
3:33 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 5:02 am

The bank UBS has been in the middle of a huge investigation into interest rate manipulation. There are several reports that a subsidiary of UBS is making a settlement deal with U.S., British and Swiss officials.

Business
2:42 am
Fri December 14, 2012

What Does Right To Work Mean?

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 3:33 am

The term "right to work" has been in the news a lot this week. On Tuesday, Michigan became the 24th state to enact right-to-work legislation. It means unions can no longer require workers to pay full dues, even if they're working in a union shop.

Politics
2:42 am
Fri December 14, 2012

'Fiscal Cliff' Message Repeats Itself

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 4:35 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Politicians, they love to stay on message, don't they? Even when there's not much to spin, they'll spin.

MONTAGNE: Take last night. President Obama met with House Speaker John Boehner. Both sides said the exchange was frank. Lines of communication remain open.

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Business
2:42 am
Fri December 14, 2012

SEC Chairman Schapiro's Exit Interview

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 5:51 am

In an interview with David Greene, outgoing Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro reflects on her tenure at the agency, and the disappointment that she wasn't able to overhaul money market funds. She leaves the job on Friday.

Business
2:42 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Examining Earned Income Tax Credit

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 4:47 am

It's time for another installment in Morning Edition's 12 Days of Tax Deductions — a check on some of the deductions, credits and tax breaks that could be on the chopping block as the government seeks to raise revenue and reduce debt.

Economy
2:42 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Inflation Index Fix Could Cut Federal Deficit

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 8:13 am

The Consumer Price Index is one of the most familiar measures in economics and politics. But some in Washington want to change the way the index is calculated to better reflect people's shopping habits.

While the proposed change is described as a technical fix, it could also cut the federal deficit by hundreds of billions of dollars over the next decade.

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Planet Money
1:24 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Why A Principal Created His Own Currency

David Kestenbaum NPR

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 12:43 pm

Shawn Rux took over as principal of MS 53, a New York City middle school, last year. At the time, 50 or 60 kids were absent every day. You could understand why they stayed away: The school was chaos.

Twenty-two teachers had quit, the entire office staff had quit, and hundreds of kids had been suspended. The school was given a grade of F from the city's department of education.

"It was in a bad place," Rux says.

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Business
1:17 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Farewell, Bosses: A Wave Of Young Entrepreneurs

To save money, 30-year-old Alisha Mustafa runs her small pie-making business out of the kitchen of another restaurant.
Mustafa Pie Co.

Originally published on Fri December 14, 2012 3:33 am

Thirty-year-old Alisha Mustafa spent years working at low-paying restaurant jobs. The unemployment rate hovers around 10 percent in her hometown of Bloomington, Ind.

"I've worked it all in this town," she says. "I've worked for so many restaurants, and last year was my year from hell in the industry."

So, she quit and started her own business. Now, she spends most days baking treats like gluten-free strawberry mango pie for her business, Mustafa Pie Co.

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Business
3:25 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Future Of Retail May Involve Personalized Shopping

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:01 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now one final time, we'll borrow the words of Ebenezer Scrooge to introduce a series of conversations we've been having.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, A CHRISTMAS CAROL)

GEORGE C. SCOTT: (as Ebenezer Scrooge) I will live in the past, present, and the future. The spirits of all three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach.

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Business
2:25 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

HSBC Critic: Too Big To Indict May Mean Too Big To Exist

HSBC has agreed to pay $1.92 billion to settle a multiyear U.S. criminal probe into money-laundering lapses at the British lender, the largest penalty ever paid by a bank.
Edgard Garrido Landov/Reuters

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:01 pm

Federal and state authorities have received criticism after deciding not to indict HSBC on accusations that it laundered money for Mexican drug cartels and conducted prohibited transactions on behalf of countries like Iran and Sudan. Instead, they entered into a $1.9 billion settlement this week with the bank.

There's no question that HSBC is a massive, sprawling operation. It markets itself as the world's local bank. But watchdogs of the banking industry say mere size should never insulate an organization from the law.

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It's All Politics
8:39 am
Thu December 13, 2012

For Business Owners, Higher Taxes Could Mean Fewer New Hires — Or More

President Obama examines a K'NEX roller coaster on Nov. 30 at a Hatfield, Pa., factory that makes the toys. During the visit, Obama spoke about the economy, the middle class and his plan to raise taxes on top wage earners.
Brendan Smialowski AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 10:25 am

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The Two-Way
6:50 am
Thu December 13, 2012

Jobless Claims Fell Sharply Last Week, Wholesale Prices Dropped In November

At a job fair in New York City earlier this year, a man waited for an interview. Economists say the job market is slowly improving, and the latest data on jobless claims seem to support that analysis.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

There were 343,000 first-time claims for unemployment benefits last week, down 29,000 from the week before, according to the Employment and Training Administration.

At that level, claims were the lowest they'd been since the first week of October's 342,000.

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Business
2:53 am
Thu December 13, 2012

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 7:03 am

CALM is an acronym for a new law that takes effect Thursday. It stands for the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act, and it means you won't have to jump for your TV remote the second commercials air. The law says the volume of commercials needs to be the same as the programs they're coming out of.

Business
2:53 am
Thu December 13, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 7:03 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with supervising banks in the EU.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Politics
2:53 am
Thu December 13, 2012

Most Of Congress In The Dark On 'Fiscal Cliff' Talks

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 9:44 am

Of the 535 members of Congress, not many appear to be in the loop about the "fiscal cliff" negotiations. That makes the rest nervous about having to vote on a bill on short notice despite misgivings about what's in it. But this is often how major deals get accomplished in Washington.

In these budget negotiations, the names Boehner and Obama come up most often — and virtually all the rest are on the outside looking in.

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