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News
2:25 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

American-Made, Haven-Kept? Congress Looks At Caterpillar's Tax Returns

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 5:58 pm

Caterpillar executives are on Capitol Hill answering questions about the company's tax returns. Caterpillar is accused of shifting money abroad to avoid billions in taxes. Company officials say Caterpillar has followed the law.

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

Transcript

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The Two-Way
1:59 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Senate Democrats Say Caterpillar Avoided $2.4 Billion In Taxes

Caterpillar Inc Vice President for Finance Services Julie Lagacy is flanked by former Senior International Tax Manager Rodney Perkins (left) and Chief Tax Officer Robin Beran (right) as they are sworn in to testify on Tuesday.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 2:31 pm

At a Senate committee hearing on Tuesday, senior officials of Peoria, Ill.-based Caterpillar Inc. defended the company against accusations that it had used an affiliate in Switzerland to avoided paying some $2.4 billion in taxes over a 12-year period.

"Americans pay the taxes they owe and not more. And, as an American company, we pay the taxes we owe, not more," Julie Lagacy, vice president of financial services at Caterpillar, told a Senate panel on Tuesday.

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It's All Politics
1:02 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Conservative Media Watchdog: Univision, Telemundo Favor Liberals

President Obama participates in a 2012 town hall hosted by Univision with news anchors Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas. A conservative media watchdog group says the Spanish-speaking network is biased in favor of Obama and liberals.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 4:28 pm

The nation's increasingly powerful Spanish-language television networks show a distinct liberal bias in covering domestic news, a conservative media watchdog group asserted Tuesday.

The Media Research Center says that its four-month analysis of weekday evening newscasts aired on Univision and Telemundo showed that the networks' domestic coverage was "dominated by partisans" from the left.

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The Two-Way
11:39 am
Tue April 1, 2014

GM CEO Barra Is Grilled Over Handling Of Ignition Switch Defect

As members of Congress prepared to hear testimony from GM's CEO Tuesday, Ken and Jayne Rimer, whose daughter, Natasha Weigel, died in the crash of a 2005 Chevy Cobalt, spoke at a news conference held by family members of deceased drivers.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 4:15 pm

In a hearing before the House Oversight and Investigations panel, GM CEO Mary Barra and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Acting Administrator David Friedman testify Tuesday on concerns surrounding GM's recall of a faulty ignition switch that's been linked to more than a dozen deaths.

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Author Interviews
11:28 am
Tue April 1, 2014

On A 'Rigged' Wall Street, Milliseconds Make All The Difference

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 12:01 pm

"The stock market is rigged," Michael Lewis tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "It's rigged for the benefit for really a handful of insiders. It's rigged to ... maximize the take of Wall Street, of banks, the exchanges and the high-frequency traders at the expense of ordinary investors."

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Business
6:02 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Rearview Cameras To Be Mandatory In New Vehicles By 2018

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:23 am

The Transportation Department says the cameras will be required in all vehicles under 10,000 pounds.

Business
4:13 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Big Thinkers Discuss How To Prevent Next Financial Crisis

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:23 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

People who think big thoughts about the financial system gathered in Boston yesterday. They were asking how to prevent the next financial crisis.

NPR's Chris Arnold reports.

CHRIS ARNOLD, BYLINE: Speaking to a room full of bankers and regulators, former Senator Chris Dodd took people back to a moment in 2008. Lehman Brothers had just collapsed and he was called into a small emergency meeting with other top lawmakers and Fed Chair Ben Bernanke.

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Business
4:08 am
Tue April 1, 2014

It's Illegal But People Get Fired For Talking About Their Pay

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:23 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning.

The U.S. Senate today will debate why women still earn roughly 80 cents to a man's dollar. Equal pay is a goal of the Paycheck Fairness Act. As NPR's Jennifer Ludden reports, one part of the bill would ban workplace policies that keep everyone's pay secret.

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Business
3:58 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Why Burning Wood To Stay Warm Is Back In Vogue

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:23 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

People in the nation's capital looked up on Sunday to see horizontal snow on the 30th of March. Weekend snow also turned up in Connecticut, Maine and Pennsylvania, and some other places. It was one more reminder of a brutal and long winter, which for some, was also a painfully expensive winter to heat their homes. Record numbers of people have turned to an old-style and cheaper alternative: Wood.

Here's Rhode Island Public Radio's Kristin Gourlay.

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NPR Story
3:16 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Calvin and Zatera Spencer Have Midas Touch

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:23 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Our last word in business is an old saying: Sooner or later, everybody's luck evens out.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's impressive that saying has lasted so long - given so much evidence that it isn't true. Consider the story of Calvin and Zatera Spencer, they won the lottery three times in less than a month.

INSKEEP: The Spencers won a million dollars playing the lottery in March. They also won another million dollars.

GREENE: And they picked up an extra 50,000 bucks in a daily drawing.

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All Tech Considered
1:19 am
Tue April 1, 2014

This Tax Season, Fraudsters May Target Your Refund

Fraudsters can get a lot of data by hacking payroll systems.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 7:47 am

You've already heard about thieves stealing credit card numbers, with the Target stores theft dominating the news headlines. But imagine what a thief could do with your company's payroll records. Those contain valuable information such as your Social Security number, date of birth, your address and how much you earn.

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Business
1:08 am
Tue April 1, 2014

An Intern At 40-Something, And 'Paid In Hugs'

Danielle Probst, 50, works part-time in food service at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C. Previously, she worked in film and marketing and also had an internship at a social media marketing company.
Jim Tuttle NPR

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 9:43 am

As the job market improves and people are trying to get back to work, more older workers in their 40s and 50s are signing on for internships. It could pay off, but it can come with some difficult trade-offs.

For Renee Killian, 47, it has meant working an unpaid stint alongside fellow interns who are less than half her age. Killian's dayside duties at the Red Cross in Washington, D.C., often involve making sure the response trucks are properly stocked with blankets, water bottles and cleaning kits. At night, she is a volunteer on call. And she's not earning a dime.

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Code Switch
1:05 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Lending Circles Help Latinas Pay Bills And Invest

Alicia Villanueva gives change to a customer at Off the Grid, a weekly street-food market in San Francisco.
Sarah Peet Sarah Peet Photography

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 6:50 am

As part of its Changing Lives of Women series, Morning Edition is exploring women and their relationship with money: saving, purchasing and investing for themselves and their families.

Cuban-American Barb Mayo describes a tanda like this: "It's like a no-interest loan with your friends." Mayo had never heard of tandas growing up, and it wasn't until she started working in sales for a cable company in Southern California that she was introduced to the concept.

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All Tech Considered
4:57 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

The New Mozilla CEO's Political Past Is Imperiling His Present

Mozilla's new CEO, Brendan Eich, pictured in 2009.
Casey Dunn Flickr

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 8:25 am

For the Internet community, the principles of free speech and equal rights are foundational. But in recent days, those issues are clashing at Mozilla, the nonprofit foundation and tech company behind the Firefox browser.

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Business
3:55 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

The Long Road To GM's Ignition Switch Recall

Chevy Cobalts on the assembly line in Ohio in 2008. Documents show General Motors was aware of problems with the car's ignition switch years before, but failed to act.
Ron Schwane AP

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 10:08 am

The new head of General Motors, Mary Barra, goes to Capitol Hill Tuesday to begin two days of testimony.

It's the first time she'll be questioned about a safety defect that's been linked to at least 13 deaths and has sparked a 2.6 million-vehicle recall.

At issue for the Detroit CEO is a classic question: What did GM know about the problems with ignition switch problems in its cars, and when did the company know it?

And just as important for GM and government regulators is the follow-up question: Why did no one act sooner?

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Shots - Health News
3:36 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

British Drugmaker Funds Research On Chronic Disease In Africa

Andrew Witty, CEO of GlaxoSmithKline, says that better control of infectious diseases in Africa is allowing chronic diseases to come to the surface.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 1:31 pm

One of the world's largest drugmakers says it will invest more than $200 million in Africa over the next five years in a push for better treatment of noncommunicable diseases there.

GlaxoSmithKline said the funding would be focused on sub-Saharan Africa, where the company already employs about 1,500 people and operates three factories. The money would go toward building five more factories and funding of research and development focused on the region.

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Business
3:08 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Timeline: A History Of GM's Ignition Switch Defect

Consulting materials engineer Mark Hood shows the ignition assembly that has a faulty ignition switch (black piece at left), in the mechanical testing laboratory at McSwain Engineering Inc. in Pensacola, Fla. The firm helped to conduct the engineering investigations and failure analysis that resulted in the GM recall.
Michael Spooneybarger Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 7:31 am

In February, General Motors issued sweeping recalls for several models suspected of having a faulty switch that automatically turns the car's engine off and prevents air bags from deploying — while the car is in motion. More than 2.6 million cars have been recalled so far.

At the core of the problem is a part in the vehicle's ignition switch that is 1.6 millimeters less "springy" than it should be. Because this part produces weaker tension, ignition keys in the cars may turn off the engine if shaken just the right way.

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The Two-Way
12:57 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Feds Will Require Rearview Cameras On Vehicles In 2018

The 2009 Ford Flex vehicle showing the rear-camera view.
Andy Cross Denver Post via Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 1:39 pm

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will require all new vehicles — from small subcompacts to commercial vans — to have "rear visibility technology" beginning in May 2018.

The new rule essentially mandates that all vehicles be equipped with a rearview camera.

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The Two-Way
10:56 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Stocks Rise After Fed's Yellen Says Economy's Not So Hot

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen speaking Monday in Chicago.
John Gress Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 12:01 pm

Just under two weeks ago, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen emerged from her first meeting as head of the central bank's policymaking committee to talk to reporters.

Stocks fell.

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Business
4:51 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Hobart 'Hobie' Alter Introduced Surfing To The Masses

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

Hobie Alter, who was considered the Henry Ford of surfboards, has died at age 80. He used foam to make surfboards that traditionally had been created from balsa wood.

Business
4:47 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Japan's Industrial Output Falls 2.3 Percent

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

Factories were apparently bracing for the fact that the country's sales tax went up Monday for the first time in 17 years — from 5 percent to 8 percent.

Business
4:15 am
Mon March 31, 2014

David Crisp To Be Sentenced In Massive Mortgage Fraud Case

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

Steve Inskeep talks to Gary Silverman of the Financial Times about a real estate fraud scheme that helped make Bakersfield, Calif., one of the home foreclosure capitals of the country.

Business
4:11 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Apple And Samsung Face Off In Court Again Over Patents

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

Each company claims the other one has swiped its patents. This time Apple is going after patents in the Android operating system that run Samsung's Galaxy S3.

Around the Nation
3:21 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Legal Action Initiated Over Malaysian Flight's Disappearance

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

A Chicago law firm is taking the first legal action against Malaysian Airlines and Boeing, the maker of the 777 that disappeared over the Indian Ocean, on behalf of the families of the passengers.

NPR Story
3:05 am
Mon March 31, 2014

New GM CEO To Face Congressional Panels Over Delayed Recall

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 5:55 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

General Motors' CEO Mary Barra takes questions in Washington this week. She'll be asked about a defective ignition switch linked to at least 13 deaths and 30 injuries. General Motors has known about it since at least 2004, but only ordered a recall last month.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The House subcommittee examining the matter said on Sunday that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also knew about the issue and failed to investigate. The agency says there wasn't enough data to do so.

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Law
1:31 am
Mon March 31, 2014

Amid Pushback, Colorado Gun Control Measure Goes On Trial

It's a legal battle that is far from over. In 2013, Sheriff John Cooke (left) and other sheriffs in Colorado filed a federal civil lawsuit objecting to two gun control bills, saying they violate the Second Amendment. This week a crucial gun control measure goes to trial.
Brennan Linsley AP

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 11:21 am

Tom Sullivan never thought much about guns or gun control — until his son was killed in the Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting. The gunman wielded a rifle with a 100-round magazine.

Sullivan is convinced that if Colorado's ban on high-capacity magazines had been in effect, his son Alex may have had a chance.

"It was one second, and the next second he was dead," Sullivan says. "That was because of the high-capacity magazines."

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The Salt
10:32 am
Sun March 30, 2014

By Any Other Name, Does Vermont's Maple Syrup Taste As Sweet?

Vermont has dropped the old system of grading of maple syrup in favor of a new plan that names both color and flavor.
Toby Talbot AP

Originally published on Sun March 30, 2014 3:59 pm

At Green's Sugarhouse in Poultney, Vt., visitors are gathered around four squeeze bottles of maple syrup, sampling the each under brand-new labels.

Vermont recently replaced its syrup grading system and now uses new names that make different syrups sound more like wine or expensive coffee.

Gone is the former system, with names like "Fancy," "Grade A Dark Amber" and "Grade B." The new labels give both the color — "Golden," "Amber" or "Dark" — and a flavor description: "Delicate," "Rich," "Robust" or "Strong."

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Shots - Health News
7:21 am
Sun March 30, 2014

Why Paper Prescriptions Are Going The Way Of Snail Mail

Maria Fabrizio for NPR

Originally published on Sun March 30, 2014 9:09 am

Charlie is like a lot of my patients. He's in his late 50s, weighs a little too much and his cholesterol and blood pressure are both too high. To lower his risk of a heart attack or stroke, he takes daily pills to control his blood pressure and lower his cholesterol.

A couple of times a year, Charlie visits me to make sure the drugs are working and aren't causing problems.

Caring for patients like Charlie has become easier in the last few years because of something that you might take for granted in 2014: electronic prescribing.

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The Salt
3:09 am
Sun March 30, 2014

No-Kill Caviar Aims To Keep The Treat And Save The Sturgeon

This Vivace "no-kill" caviar was harvested from a Siberian sturgeon via a massage-based technique. The fish didn't die. But did the taste survive?
Alastair Bland for NPR

Caviar was once the food of kings and czars — and for a sturgeon, it meant death.

But a new technique of massaging the ripe eggs from a female sturgeon — without killing or even cutting the fish open— could make caviar more abundant, more affordable, and more accessible to all.

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Business
9:36 am
Sat March 29, 2014

Boeing's Iconic 747 May Be Flying Into The Sunset

Sales of the airliner are flagging, and airlines are retiring their 747 fleets. The end may be near for the original "jumbo jet," but in its day, it offered an experience like no other.
Elaine Thompson AP

While global attention has been focused on Malaysia Airlines' missing 777 this week, Boeing's best-known aircraft, the 747, was also in the news. The Federal Aviation Administration ordered Boeing to immediately fix a software glitch that could cause problems during landing.

The software flaw is not the only problem for the enormous 747. Over four decades ago, it was the original "jumbo jet," but the newest version of Boeing's iconic plane has not sold well. On Monday, Japan's All Nippon Airways announced it will officially retire its aging 747 passenger fleet.

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