Business

Law
3:15 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Legendary D.C. Law Firm To Pay Chevron In Ecuador Pollution Case

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 7:04 am

A long-running legal battle between a legendary Washington law and lobbying firm and a major oil company has been settled.

D.C.-based Patton Boggs has agreed to pay Chevron $15 million to settle a case that centers on pollution from drilling activity in the rainforests of Ecuador.

The case has gone on for more than four years, and the stakes were enormous for the two powerhouses.

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The Two-Way
6:27 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Colorado Approves Financial System For Marijuana Industry

Colorado lawmakers have voted to create the a financial system for the state's burgeoning legal marijuana industry.

After Colorado legalized pot in 2013, it still had no financial mechanism for legal marijuana businesses. Washington has also approved the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes.

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Code Switch
4:57 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

After 6 Decades, 'Jet' Magazine Decides To Go All-Digital

Jet magazine founder John H. Johnson started the publication to spotlight black achievements and report on events that he thought were important to black communities. But as the media and political landscape around Jet changed, the magazine struggled.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 6:33 pm

When I was growing up, my aunt used to stack dozens of magazines high on a side table at the top of her stairs. It was an accidental library of black magazines — lots of Ebony and Essence, the stray Black Enterprise here and there, but especially the digest-sized Jet. When I was at that age where kids want to consume every written word, I would blow through those old issues of Jet by the pile. That's probably the only real way to "read" Jet, since every article seemed to be shorter than 300 words. It was black news, bite-size.

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Environment
4:04 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

When Colleges Ditch Coal Investments, It's Barely A Drop In The Bucket

Some universities have stopped investing in coal companies, but many others don't see the point. An aerial view of the Coal Hollow Mine in Utah in 2012.
Ethan Miller Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:59 am

If the students at Stanford University believe they sent the coal industry a strong message this week, they should think again. The school's decision to eliminate coal from its portfolio did not send shock waves through the industry. In fact, representatives say it will have no financial impact on the industry at all. Nor will it curb the growing demand around the world for coal-generated electricity.

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Environment
3:11 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Stanford Dumps Its Holdings In Coal, With Climate In Mind

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:59 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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The Salt
2:59 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Vermont's GMO Bill Expected To Face Major Legal Challenges

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:59 am

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin will sign a landmark bill into law on Thursday, making the state the first to require food producers to label products made with genetic engineering.

The law won't go into effect for two years, but it's already become a hot topic at the first outdoor farmers market of the season in the capital city of Montpelier.

"Finally we have a vote," says Laini Fondilier, who runs the Lazy Lady Farm stand. "We haven't been able to vote on this by our purchases."

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The Two-Way
9:24 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Stanford University Says No To Coal Investments

Stanford University's trustees says the school will rid itself of any investments it has made in coal-producing companies. A 2013 file photo shows coal being loaded onto a truck at a mine near Decker, Montana.
Matthew Brown AP

Stanford's trustees say the school will no longer invest in companies that mine coal, joining about a dozen other colleges that have taken the step. The decision cited alternate energy sources that emit less greenhouse gases.

Stanford will liquidate any current holdings in coal-producing companies, the school says. Of the schools that have divested, it's by far the largest.

"Stanford wouldn't say how much it currently invests in coal companies," NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports. "Its total endowment was just shy of $19 billion last year."

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The Two-Way
8:43 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Brunei's Shariah Law Spurs Boycott Of Beverly Hills Hotel

People protest outside the Beverly Hills Hotel, which is owned by the Sultan of Brunei, over the country's Shariah law penal code in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Monday.
Jonathan Alcorn Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 2:20 pm

The Beverly Hills City Council voted Tuesday night to ask the government of Brunei to divest itself of the famed Beverly Hills Hotel.

At issue: Shariah, or Islamic, law. Last week, Brunei, a tiny oil-rich kingdom in southeast Asia, adopted Shariah as part of its penal code. The law, which will be introduced in phases, makes abortion, adultery and gay relationships punishable by flogging and stoning.

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The Two-Way
8:07 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Reported $147 Million Home Price Would Set New U.S. Record

A satellite image depicts a beachfront estate that reportedly sold for $147 million in East Hampton, N.Y.
Google Maps

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 2:12 pm

The stock market has been on a winning streak — and that means these are busy times in exclusive U.S. housing markets. How else to explain three homes that each reportedly sold for more than $100 million in the past three months?

News that hedge fund founder Barry Rosenstein is buying an East Hampton, N.Y., property for $147 million prompted Bloomberg News to declare, "The U.S. trophy-home market is shattering price records this year."

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Shots - Health News
7:41 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Employers Eye Moving Sickest Workers To Insurance Exchanges

Would he be happier with a health plan bought on the exchange? His boss probably would be.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 10:40 am

Can corporations shift workers with high medical costs from the company health plan into online insurance exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act? Some employers are considering it, say benefits consultants.

"It's all over the marketplace," said Todd Yates, a managing partner at Hill, Chesson & Woody, a North Carolina benefits consulting firm. "Employers are inquiring about it, and brokers and consultants are advocating for it."

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Business
4:52 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Yogurt May Become New York's Official Snack

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 6:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business is: A Yogurt State of Mind.

The New York State Senate voted on yesterday on the official state snack.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

They were voting to give that honor to yogurt. Apparently, New York is the leading yogurt producer in America. But in a state famous for bagels and giant pretzels, not to mention big apples, the debate got heated.

MONTAGNE: The social media site BuzzFeed tweeted the highlights, such as a state senator asking, was yogurt the only option?

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Business
4:14 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Nigeria's Economy Leads Other African Nations

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 8:27 am

Steve Inskeep talks to Matthew Bishop, New York bureau chief at The Economist, about Nigeria's economy. The biggest country in Africa has also just become the continent's largest economy.

Business
3:06 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Edgy Video Promotes Christie's Contemporary Art Sale

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 3:24 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a new way of marketing high-end art.

Spring auction season has kicked off in New York City. Yesterday, paintings by Picasso and Monet helped the auction house, Christie's, cello most $300 million worth of paintings.

As NPR's Elizabeth Blair reports, this year, Christie's is promoting its auctions in a new way, with something that looks a lot like a music video.

ELIZABETH BLAIR, BYLINE: It's pretty slick.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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NPR Story
3:06 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Chinese E-Commerce Giant To Offer U.S. IPO

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 3:07 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

A Chinese e-commerce giant filed for an initial public stock offering yesterday. Alibaba - which has no exact equivalent in the U.S. - will, however, conduct its IPO here. And it's expected to raise billions. The IPO could be the biggest since Facebook back in 2012. To learn more about Alibaba, we turn to NPR's Frank Langfitt, who's in Shanghai. Good morning.

FRANK LANGFITT, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

MONTAGNE: So exactly what is Alibaba?

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War On Poverty, 50 Years Later
1:34 am
Wed May 7, 2014

The Changing Picture Of Poverty: Hard Work Is 'Just Not Enough'

Victoria Houser of Painted Post, N.Y., is raising her son, Brayden, on her own. She says she feels stuck in a never-ending cycle, constantly worried that one financial emergency will send everything tumbling down.
Pam Fessler NPR

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 3:27 pm

There are 46 million poor people in the U.S., and millions more hover right above the poverty line — but go into many of their homes, and you might find a flat-screen TV, a computer or the latest sneakers.

And that raises a question: What does it mean to be poor in America today?

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Sports
4:06 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Brewskee-Ball Founders Refuse To Be Sidelined By Trademark Case

Brewskee-Ball has built a league of competitive Skee-Ball players, but the owners of the name Skee-Ball are not amused.
Courtesy of Eric Pavony

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 7:04 pm

The founders of Brewskee-Ball like to say they've taken Skee-Ball from the arcade to the bar, turning the old-time amusement park game into a competitive sport with hundreds of dedicated players in a handful of locations across the country, including Brooklyn, N.Y., San Francisco and Austin.

But the company that makes Skee-Ball machines is not amused.

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Business
3:24 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

Alibaba IPO Could Be The Biggest Ever

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 7:04 pm

Alibaba is the biggest e-commerce player in China. The Internet conglomerate is filing papers in the U.S. for what could be the biggest IPO ever.

The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Tue May 6, 2014

China's Alibaba Files To Go Public In The U.S.

Alibaba founder Jack Ma dresses as a pop star and sings at an event to mark the 10th anniversary of China's most popular online shopping destination Taobao Marketplace, in Hangzhou on May 10, 2013.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 3:35 pm

The Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has filed for an initial public offering in the United States.

The company runs the largest online and mobile commerce site in the world, controlling a huge portion of the Chinese market. Its intent to go public marks the biggest IPO of the Internet age since Twitter went public in November of 2013.

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Your Money
9:51 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Is Bitcoin Where The Smart Money Is Now?

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 11:38 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Now we'd like to turn to matters of personal finance. It turns out that money is more than what you have in your pocket. Today we want to take a look at the digital currency known as bitcoin.

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The Two-Way
9:04 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Bayer Will Buy Merck Consumer Unit For $14.2 Billion

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 3:44 pm

German drug company Bayer has agreed to acquire the consumer care business of U.S.-based Merck & Co., in a deal that would bolster Bayer in the over-the-counter drug sector. The $14.2 billion purchase includes brands such as Claritin, Coppertone and Dr. Scholl's.

From Reuters:

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The Two-Way
6:34 am
Tue May 6, 2014

New Report Finds Climate Change Already Having Broad Impact

People survey the damage on Scenic Highway in Pensacola, Fla., after part of it collapsed following heavy rains and flash flooding on April 30.
Marianna Massey Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 9:22 am

A new U.S. government report released Tuesday finds that climate change is already having a broad impact on both weather and the economy.

NPR's Elizabeth Shogren tells our Newscast unit the third National Climate Assessment is the most comprehensive look at climate change that the government has ever produced. It was put together by more than 300 experts "guided by a 60-member Federal Advisory Committee."

She filed this report for our Newscast unit:

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Business
6:28 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Office Depot To Close 400 Stores

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 8:34 am

The company announced on Tuesday that it is shutting more than a third of its domestic locations. The company posted a loss for the first quarter and hopes to turn a profit by next year.

The Two-Way
4:03 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Poll: Prestigious Colleges Won't Make You Happier In Life Or Work

Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatricals. According to a recent Gallup poll, only 2 percent of college graduates with $20,000 to $40,000 in undergraduate loans said they were "thriving."
TPapi Flickr

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 7:38 am

There's plenty of anxiety in the U.S. over getting into a top college. But a new Gallup poll suggests that, later in life, it doesn't matter nearly as much as we think. In fact, when you ask college graduates whether they're "engaged" with their work or "thriving" in all aspects of their lives, their responses don't vary one bit whether they went to a prestigious college or not.

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Business
2:42 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Target CEO Out After Data Breach, Canadian Expansion Misstep

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 8:34 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Target has been through a lot of turmoil these last few months. Of course, there was that cyberattack on customer credit card data - one of the largest in retail history. But that's not Target's biggest problem or the only reason its chief executive announced he was stepping down yesterday.

From Minnesota Public Radio, Annie Baxter explains.

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NPR Story
2:33 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Coca-Cola To Phase Out BVO

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 8:34 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a recipe change from Coke.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: No, no, no. There's not going to be a new Coke. They're not going to try that again. Several of Coca-Cola's fruity drinks, like Fanta and Power Aid contain brominated vegetable oil or BVO. In 2012, a teenager in Mississippi started a petition to remove BVO from sports strings for health reasons, because it contains a chemical used in some flame retardants.

NPR Story
2:33 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Fiat Chrysler To Outline 5-Year Strategic Plan

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 8:34 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's a big day for Fiat Chrysler. The Italian-American automaker will outline a strategic plan for the next five years.

The marriage between two once troubled companies, Chrysler and Fiat, has surprised many in the auto industry by thriving - not just surviving. Now, the company is looking to build on its strengths, as Michigan Radio's Tracy Samilton reports.

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NPR Story
2:33 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Amazon Makes Online Shopping Even Easier

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 8:34 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Next, we'll report on the latest effort to make impulse purchases easier. Our last word in business today is: Hashtag, Amazon Cart.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's say you see a tweet about reduced sugar Gummy Bears or a banana slicer and you think, if I don't put those in my shopping cart right now I will forget that I want to buy them, and that would be a disaster.

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World
1:28 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Putin's Internet Plan Requires 'Sharing' With Security Services

Russian President Vladimir Putin, shown speaking on TV last month, has signed a measure that would impose a host of restrictions on Internet companies and users.
Alexey Nikolsky/RIO Novosti/Kremlin pool EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 6:25 pm

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a new measure that will give the government much greater control over the Internet.

Critics say the law is aimed at silencing opposition bloggers and restricting what people can say on social media. It would also force international email providers and social networks to make their users' information available to the Russian security services.

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Remembrances
3:01 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Remembering Economist Gary Becker, Who Described 'Marriage Market'

Gary Becker was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House in 2007.
Roger L. Wollenberg UPI/Landov

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 5:59 pm

University of Chicago economist Gary Becker died Saturday at the age of 83. He won the Nobel Prize in 1992 for broadening the horizons of economics, using economic analysis to explore social issues like crime, racial discrimination and drug addiction.

Becker was a giant in the field of economics, and his pioneering application of economic theory to social questions extended to the marriage market. In an NPR interview on the day he was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics, Becker explained:

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Business
2:02 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Target's Top Executive Steps Down, Brought Low By Data Breach

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 9:49 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. Five months after Target disclosed a massive data breach, its CEO has lost his job. Greg Steinhafel is stepping down from his dual posts as president and CEO at Target Corporation. His resignation underscores the company's effort to overhaul its entire business. Here's NPR's Yuki Noguchi.

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