Business

Your Money
9:39 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Financial Advisors Selling Bogus Advice?

Skipping $4 lattes will save you some money — but buying into bogus financial advice won't. Finance journalist, Helaine Olen says many of the so-called 'financial experts' are selling you advice to make themselves rich. She discusses her book, Pound Foolish: Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry with host Michel Martin.

Planet Money
9:02 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Ask A Banker: Shadow Banking Is Like Banking, Only Shadier

Not just an empty suit.
Paul Goyette Flickr

Hi! It's Ask a Banker! Once again, I'm a former banker, current Dealbreaker editor and occasional answerer of questions here. Send more questions to planetmoney@npr.org with "ask a banker" in the subject line, or ask on Twitter (@planetmoney). This week's question comes from Ellen in Minneapolis and I think you'll like it:

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The Two-Way
8:01 am
Tue March 5, 2013

14,253.77: Dow Rallies, Finishing In Record Territory

A trader on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange earlier this week.
Brendan McDermid Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 3:36 pm

Update at 4:09 p.m. ET. A New Record:

The Dow Industrials finished in record territory today. Gaining 89 points, it closed at 14,253.77, its highest level since Oct. 9,2007.

That is, the Dow has recovered all the losses it suffered during the Great Recession.

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NPR Story
3:10 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Business News

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:25 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a ketchup jackpot.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: Last month, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and a private equity firm announced they were buying Heinz for $29 billion. Now we're learning what the deal means for Heinz's CEO, William Johnson.

NPR Story
3:10 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Best Buy To End Flexible Work Program

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:27 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And our last word in business is, no more working in your pajamas. Best Buy says it's ending its flexible work program, calling its corporate employees back to the office.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is getting to be a trend. The move comes after Yahoo stirred debate for ending its work-from-home program. A Best Buy spokesperson told the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the hope is that quote, "all-hands-on-deck approach will lead to collaboration."

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Author Interviews
1:38 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Skipping Out On College And 'Hacking Your Education'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 3:18 am

The cost of college can range from $60,000 for a state university to four times as much at some private colleges. The total student debt in the U.S. now tops credit card debt. So a lot of people are asking: Is college really worth it?

There are several famous and staggeringly successful college dropouts, including Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and Larry Ellison. You may not end up with fat wallets like them, but Dale Stephens says you can find a different education path.

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Your Money
1:35 am
Tue March 5, 2013

For Baby Boomers, Lessons In Financial Basics

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 11:54 am

The oldest of the baby boomers came of age in the 1960s and are beginning to retire. Their younger cohorts are still putting kids through college and building careers. Baby boomers are a giant portion of the population — 78 million people, by one estimate.

They grew up in an era of rising living standards, but the Great Recession destroyed any sense of financial security — and many nest eggs. Financial planner Tim Maurer outlines a variety of issues boomers face.

Who is a baby boomer, and what defines their financial situations?

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The Two-Way
2:38 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Listing The World's Billionaires: A Not-So-Exact Science

Two recent tallies of the world's richest people agree on the broad points — but not on which continent has the most billionaires. Here, U.S. dollars are counted, with Chinese yuan notes in the background.
STR AFP/Getty Images

There are more than 1,400 billionaires in the world right now, according to two sources — one in the U.S., and one in China. But the tallies by Forbes and Hurun Report differ on key points, including whether there are now more billionaires in Asia than anywhere else.

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Economy
12:15 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

State Of Emergency: Cities In Financial Crisis

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 12:37 pm

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Ari Shapiro in Washington; Neal Conan is away. Year by year, cities are raising fees and cutting public services to stay out of financial trouble. For some cities, that's just not enough. Detroit projects a $200 million deficit this year, and the city owes $14 billion in long-term obligations. The state's Republican Governor Rick Snyder says there's probably no city more financially challenged in the entire United States.

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Business
9:58 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Yahoo: A Telecommunication Breakdown?

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:51 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, it's been called a landmark in the American literary canon. Certainly it's one of the premier works of Chicano literature. Now it's finally made its way to the big screen. We are going to speak with its star, herself a well-loved pioneer among Latina actresses. Her name is Miriam Colon and she's with us in just a few minutes to tell us about "Bless Me, Ultima."

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Around the Nation
3:22 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Wood From The Hood Repurposes Local Logs

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We are often urged to buy local, but when people say that, we're usually thinking about food. Now it seems you can aim for local furniture and local building materials. Matt Sepic of Minnesota Public Radio reports on the Minneapolis business that makes everything from hardwood flooring to picture frames from trees cut just down the block.

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Around the Nation
3:18 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Hard-Hit Boise Subdivision Lacks Owner-Occupied Homes

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The housing market is recovering in much of the country, not so much in Idaho. Home prices dropped by 46 percent in the Boise area during the financial crises. Forty-six percent. Today's business bottom line takes us to the home of a family that rode out the crash and are still waiting for better times. Here's Molly Messick of Boise State Public Radio.

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Economy
3:16 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Sequestration Cuts Will Build Slowly

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

President Obama ordered across-the-board federal spending cuts on Friday night. The $85 billion in cuts are spread across much of the government. The president and many Republicans have called the cuts unwise. But Congress passed them and the president signed them in 2011, and in recent days, they did not agree on a plan to revise or replace them.

We turn to David Wessel to find out what happens now. He is economics editor of The Wall Street Journal. David, welcome back.

DAVID WESSEL: Good morning.

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Business
3:01 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Business News

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with ExxonMobil's defense.

Around the Nation
3:01 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Will Emergency Manager Help Or Hurt Detroit?

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Residents of Detroit are absorbing the message sent by Michigan's governor. Rick Snyder swept aside the city's elected officials. He's using his power to appoint an emergency manager to take over city finances. Residents are deeply divided about this move, as we hear from Michigan Radio's Sarah Cwiek.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Nobody had a comment in regards to the lighting problem?

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NPR Story
2:56 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Winery To Experiment With 'Drunken Treasure'

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business is: drunken treasure.

Some wine connoisseurs say that wine recovered from shipwrecks has a unique taste. Could be sheer age but it might be something else about the aging process at the bottom of the ocean.

JIM DYKE: The ocean providing a sort of constant motion to the wine as it sits on the bottom, pressure is different, lack of light, temperature.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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All Tech Considered
1:22 am
Mon March 4, 2013

'Consumer Reports' Offers Tips For Doing Taxes Online

While many people look to tax preparation services for help, Tobie Stanger, editor at Consumer Reports, says online tools are often cost-effective.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Tax day is looming and taxpayers are scrambling to gather receipts, W-2 forms and other documents. For many, gone are the days of paper ledger books and calculators, now that there's software to figure out how much they owe.

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Business
6:11 am
Sat March 2, 2013

How The Sequester Will (Or Won't) Affect Wall Street

Originally published on Sat March 2, 2013 9:04 am

Wall Street hardly seemed rattled by the $85 billion across-the-board spending cuts that went into effect Friday. As just one indicator, the Dow closed the week within 100 points of hitting an all-time high. For more, host Scott Simon talks with New York Times columnist Joe Nocera.

U.S.
4:05 am
Sat March 2, 2013

Florida Atlantic Donation Sparks Outrage, But University Doesn't Budge

Originally published on Sat March 2, 2013 9:04 am

Florida Atlantic University says it's standing by its deal to sell naming rights to its new football stadium to a controversial private prison company. The Boca Raton-based GEO Group faces allegations of abuse and neglect at some of its facilities, and there's a growing call on campus for the school to sever its ties.

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The Two-Way
12:03 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

FCC To Examine Federal Ban On Unlocking Cellphones

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 4:54 pm

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski says his agency will investigate whether a federal ban on unlocking cellphones is "harmful to economic competitiveness."

Genachowski made the comments during a event hosted by the technology site TechCrunch.

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Food
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Why Process Food Is Cheaper Than Healthier Options

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 4:32 am

Earlier in the week in our "On the Run" series, we heard a mom explain how mac and cheese was more affordable than fresh fruit. Morning Edition reached out to Barry Popkin of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, a nutritionist and economist, to explain why that would be true.

Politics
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

There's Still A Chance To Avoid Sequester Cuts

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 4:49 am

President Obama meets with bipartisan congressional leaders at the White House Friday. Deep budget cuts could start taking effect Friday unless there's a last minute agreement.

Business
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 5:10 am

Todd Duffey is suing the publisher Perseus which sells a book and a collection of buttons called the Office Space Box of Flair, inspired by the 1999 movie. Duffey doesn't like that his face appears on the cover of the book and on one of the buttons in the collection.

Television
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Spanish-Language Network Univision Ranks 3rd In U.S. Ratings

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 3:41 am

The latest TV ratings are out and CBS captured the top spot with help from its Super Bowl broadcast. Last fall, NBC was No. 1 but now it's fourth. What's surprising is that Spanish-language network Univision has surpassed NBC's ratings.

Economy
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Economists Debate Sequestration's Effect On Economy

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 11:47 am

The Congressional Budget Office estimates the automatic budget cuts that go into effect Friday will shave 0.6 percent from the economy's annual growth rate. That might not be a big worry if the economy were growing at 3 or 4 percent. But growth is a paltry 2 percent, so the impact may be noticeable.

Science
3:16 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Energy Start-Up Banks On Compressed Air Over Batteries

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 7:34 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Many states want to increase the amount of electricity that comes from wind and solar energy. One challenge is that renewables are not reliable. The wind doesn't always blow, the sun doesn't always shine. So companies are now trying to develop better ways to store energy.

New Hampshire Public Radio's Sam Evans-Brown reports on a company that is working on a storage system that uses compressed air.

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Planet Money
1:01 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Sales Are Like Drugs. What Happens When A Store Wants Customers To Quit?

Formerly known as "clearance."
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 10:27 am

Last year, J.C. Penney saw what every big retailer had been seeing for years: the threat of Amazon and other new competitors rising to destroy their business.

So J.C. Penney brought in a bold new CEO. Ron Johnson had already created Apple Store, a chain of physical stores where people flocked to shop. Before that, he had revamped Target.

And Johnson had a plan for J.C. Penney: Tell customers they don't have to spend time anymore clipping coupons or waiting for sales to happen. Instead, the store would offer fair prices on its merchandise every day.

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Business
12:59 am
Fri March 1, 2013

Stay-At-Home Workers Defend Choice After Yahoo Ban

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 11:51 am

Yahoo's sweeping edict against telecommuting has been felt as a personal attack by some of the two-thirds of Americans who regularly work from home.

Lawyer Shannan Higgins of Washington, D.C., finds one line of the company memo outlining the policy change particularly offensive: "Speed and quality are often sacrificed when we work from home."

For nearly a decade, Higgins has worked one day a week from the basement office in her rowhouse, where she takes pride in her work and is obsessed with efficiency.

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The Two-Way
4:32 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Two For One: Groupon Replaces CEO Mason With Board Members

Andrew Mason, a co-founder of Groupon, has been ousted by the company's board, one day after a disappointing earnings report. Here, he's seen at a 2012 conference in Germany.
Johannes Simon Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 4:48 am

Hear Laura Sydell's report for Morning Edition by clicking the audio link.

Groupon co-founder Andrew Mason has been fired as the daily-deal company's CEO, one day after Groupon posted financial results that showed it lost $67.4 million during 2012. Board chairmen Eric Lefkofsky and Ted Leonsis will jointly fill the CEO post on an interim basis.

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Around the Nation
12:11 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

On Heels Of Sequestration, The Business Of Spending Cuts

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 2:56 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. The metaphors become unbearably trite: the debt ceiling; the fiscal cliff and now the meat cleaver of the sequestration. Details are important, we'll get to those in a moment, but underlying the repeated rounds of budgetary crisis, lies a deeper political paralysis.

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