Business

The Two-Way
9:36 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Any Way It's Measured, Tesla's $5B 'Gigafactory' Is Huge

Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 11:31 am

Just how big a deal is the "gigafactory" that Tesla Motors says it's going to build to make batteries for its electric cars?

-- It's projected to cost $5 billion between now and the year 2020. Tesla expects to invest about $2 billion. Partners — who it's rumored could include Apple and Panasonic — would invest the rest.

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Planet Money
9:02 am
Thu February 27, 2014

The Price Of A Pizza In 237 U.S. Neighborhoods

tk
tk

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 12:44 pm

Yesterday, we crunched thousands of pizza prices from around the country, and argued that you should always buy a bigger pizza. (And in a separate post, we presented the case against buying a bigger pizza.)

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The Two-Way
6:54 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Jobless Claims Jump Up, Orders For Durable Goods Fall Off

Thursday's economic news isn't great:

-- There were 348,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance filed last week, up 14,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration says.

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Business
5:10 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Tesla To Build Large-Scale Battery Factory

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 5:30 am

The company says it needs the factory to produce batteries faster and cheaper in order to build an electric car for mass market — one that can be sold for under $40,000.

NPR Story
5:10 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Denmark-Based Lego Releases 2013 Results

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 5:30 am

Sales increased by 11 percent. The announcement does not include revenue tied to the chart-topping movie. The Lego Movie was released this month.

Business
5:10 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Boeing's Smarthpone Would Self-Destruct If It's Tampered With

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 5:30 am

The company filed papers with the FCC for the phone, simply being called Black. Any attempt to tamper with the Boeing Black will result in all of its contacts, communication and software being erased.

Business
3:15 am
Thu February 27, 2014

Sriracha-Maker Given More Time To Contain Spicy Fumes

Sriracha chili sauce bottles are produced at the Huy Fong Foods factory in Irwindale, Calif.
Nick Ut AP

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 12:40 pm

The saga over the darling of the condiment world, Sriracha, continues.

The popular hot sauce in the rooster bottle is made by Huy Fong Foods in the Los Angeles suburb of Irwindale. The city has had to balance its need for business success against complaints from some residents about spicy fumes from the plant.

Wednesday night, after a contentious hearing, Irwindale's city council decided to give Huy Fong a bit more time to figure out how to contain those fumes.

The Sauce America's Hot For

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All Tech Considered
2:35 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

With Tech Outsourcing, The Internet Can Be 'A Scary Place'

When it comes to Internet security, many experts agree outsourcing can create added risks, even if they disagree on the merits of outsourcing in the first place.
Igor Stevanovic iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 10:08 am

When you hear the word outsourcing, you might think of threats to American jobs. To cyber experts, there's another threat: to our data.

This week, thousands of the industry's leading minds from around the world are discussing the Internet and security at their annual powwow in San Francisco, the RSA Conference. These topics matter more and more to us non-experts, especially as people become the victims of cybercrime.

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Business
2:03 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Swiss Bank Finds Itself Under American Scrutiny

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 10:08 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Top executives at one of Switzerland's biggest banks said today they're sincerely trying to prevent tax evasion by U.S. citizens. They also said conflicting laws in the two countries make it almost impossible to do that. The chief executive of Credit Suisse appeared before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which has been looking into the use of secret Swiss bank accounts by Americans.

Here's NPR's Jim Zarroli.

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Law
12:21 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Supreme Court Allows Stanford Ponzi Scheme Suits To Go Forward

Texas tycoon R. Allen Stanford, who conned investors in a $7 billion Ponzi scheme, arrives in custody at the federal courthouse for an Aug. 2010 hearing in Houston.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 1:16 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that investor lawsuits may go forward against investment advisors and others for allegedly helping Texas tycoon Allen Stanford in a massive fraud.

Stanford was sentenced to 110 years in prison for bilking investors in a $7 billion Ponzi scheme. The investors who lost money are suing others involved in the scheme, contending that they also engaged in misleading conduct.

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All Tech Considered
10:50 am
Wed February 26, 2014

If You've Ignored Bitcoin Up Until Now, This One's For You

No, these aren't real bitcoins (just Bitcoin buttons). Fans of the virtual currency see several real benefits, including the elimination of fees for transferring money.
Frank Jordans AP

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 2:05 pm

One of Bitcoin's largest trading exchanges shut down Tuesday, and you probably couldn't care less.

So what if rumors are circulating that millions of dollars' worth of Bitcoin are stolen? If you don't understand Bitcoin in the first place, it's hard to figure out why this matters. So we're using this as an opportunity to go back to the basics: what this b-word means, where it came from and why it just might matter.

The Birth Of Bitcoin

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Planet Money
9:22 am
Wed February 26, 2014

74,476 Reasons You Should Always Get The Bigger Pizza

Somebody check the cheese.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 3:28 pm

One day last year, an engineer and I went to a pizza place for lunch. The engineer told me he wasn't very hungry, but he said he was going to get the 12-inch medium instead of the 8-inch small — because the medium was more than twice as big as the small, and it cost only a little bit more. This sort of blew my mind.

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It's All Politics
8:52 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Lobbyists Amp Up Efforts To Sell Washington On E-Cigarettes

Blair Roberts, a 22-year-old sales associate at Colorado E-Smokes, "vapes" with an electronic cigarette in the Aurora, Colo., store. In the absence of federal rules, Colorado is among states that considered its own age requirements for the nicotine-delivery devices.
Ed Andrieski AP

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 3:57 pm

In a scene from the new season of the popular Netflix political drama House of Cards, the elegant Claire Underwood catches her soon-to-be vice president husband puffing an e-cigarette.

"You're cheating," she says, referring to their efforts to quit smoking.

"No, I'm not," Congressman Francis Underwood replies. "It's vapor ... addiction without the consequences."

A Washington-based drama with an implicit endorsement of "vaping" — the practice of partaking in nicotine without burning tobacco?

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All Tech Considered
8:15 am
Wed February 26, 2014

iOS 6 Users Left In The Lurch After Security Flaw Discovered

Still using Apple's iOS 6? You may be counting on luck to protect your iPhone from a serious security flaw.
Michael Nagle Getty Images

As has been widely reported, Apple recently discovered a critical bug in its iOS and OS systems.

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The Two-Way
6:06 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Book News: Apple Appeals Ruling In E-Book Price-Fixing Case

Apple says in its appeal filed Tuesday that it was ignorant of any price-fixing conspiracy.
Daniel Barry Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 10:42 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Business
5:43 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Delta Changes Course On Frequent Flier Miles

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with sky high costs for airline miles.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GREENE: And we're not talking about actually buying airline miles. But starting today, Delta Airlines will be the first major carrier to tie frequent flier points to how much you pay for your ticket - not how far you fly. This means in most cases, business-class will earn more points than coach and first class tickets will earn even more.

Business
5:43 am
Wed February 26, 2014

'Got Milk' Campaign Runs Dry

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business is: Had Milk.

AdAge reports the national milk industry will drop the famous Got Milk campaign that has run for the last couple of decades - so goodbye to the milk mustache that's adorned the upper lip of many a celebrity.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Business
4:39 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Senate Report: Credit Suisse Bank Helped Americans Evade Taxes

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 12:20 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Top officials of the Swiss bank, Credit Suisse, told a Senate hearing today that they're committed to unearthing tax evasion by U.S. citizens. The Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations released a report yesterday, that the bank was deeply involved in helping Americans hide their money in secret accounts.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

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Health
4:37 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Critics Question FDA's Approval Of Zohydro

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 5:43 am

Prominent universities and drug addiction organizations are asking the FDA to reconsider its approval of a controversial painkiller called Zohydro. It's 10 times more powerful than OxyContin.

Books News & Features
3:09 am
Wed February 26, 2014

When It Comes To Women's Writing, How Do Publications Stack Up?

For the fourth year in a row, VIDA has tallied up the gender breakdown in prominent literary journals — counting both reviewers and authors.
Peter Mautsch iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 8:21 am

If it seems like male authors get more attention, there are hard numbers to back that up: The VIDA count.

VIDA is a women's literary organization, and the "count" is the result of eight months spent tracking gender disparity in leading publications. VIDA tallies the gender of authors whose books are being reviewed as well as the gender of those doing the reviewing.

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The Salt
4:44 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Industry Wipes Away 'Got Milk?' Mustache After Sales Take Spill

The milk's industry's new campaign, Milk Life, features ordinary people accomplishing all sorts of tasks after jumpstarting their day with a glass of milk.
Courtesy of Milk Processor Education Program

There's a new slogan in town that will replace "Got Milk?"

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Economy
2:35 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Massive Digital Heist Allegedly Hits Bitcoin Market

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 2:09 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

The digital currency bitcoin has hit a major hurdle. A leading exchange for bitcoin has halted all transactions and has frozen customer accounts. This exchange is called Mt. Gox. And earlier today, it temporarily disappeared from the Internet. The happened amidst reports that Mt. Gox was hit by an alleged theft that could amount to about six percent of all the bitcoins in circulation.

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Business
2:19 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Problems Linger For Boeing's Flagship 787 Airliner

A Boeing 787 performs a demonstration flight in 2013. Battery fires, software failures and incomplete pieces have plagued the new high-tech plane.
Francois Mori AP

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 6:01 pm

Despite more than a decade to work out problems and an estimated $20 billion to build it, Boeing's 787 aircraft is still plagued by issues.

The high-tech, fuel-efficient airplane was supposed to be a game changer in the aviation industry — and it still may be — but it keeps making headlines for all the wrong reasons.

Ever since 787s finally began flying in 2011, there have been technical and mechanical problems, from software bugs and engine defects to faulty wiring, trouble with hydraulics and fuel tank leaks.

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All Tech Considered
10:57 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Facebook Shuts Down Its Email Service Since No One Used It

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the 2010 event announcing Facebook's new email messaging system. This week, the company shuttered the service.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 27, 2014 6:58 am

Facebook's foray into email ended Monday, when the social media giant quietly retired the email service that many users didn't even know existed. Users received a notice saying the @facebook.com email addresses they deployed are going away.

"We're making this change because most people haven't been using their Facebook email addresses, and we wanted to make it easier to view all your emails in one place," the message read.

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Money Coach
9:45 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Understanding How Employers May Change Your Retirement Fund

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 10:45 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now we turn from government finance to personal finance. As fewer and fewer American workers receive traditional pension benefits, many are looking to 401(k)s to support them after they leave the workforce. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 88 million Americans now have these accounts. But now some employers are changing the way those accounts are handled, and that could force workers to reassess how to prepare for retirement.

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The Two-Way
7:59 am
Tue February 25, 2014

After 'Best Year Since 2005,' Housing Sector Likely To Slow

A home for sale earlier this month in San Francisco.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 8:07 am

Home prices across 20 of the nation's major metropolitan areas rose 13.4 percent in 2013 from the year before, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index report.

Overall, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices economist David Blitzer, the index "ended its best year since 2005" — well before the burst of the housing bubble in 2007-08.

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The Two-Way
5:23 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Book News: Bernanke Writing A Book On The Fed And The Great Recession

Ben Bernanke is seen leaving his Washington, D.C., office on Jan. 31, his last day as chairman of the Federal Reserve.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 8:24 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
5:06 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Bitcoin Exchange Mt. Gox Goes Dark After Theft Report

Kolin Burges, a self-styled cryptocurrency trader and former software engineer, was among a small number of protesters outside the Tokyo offices of bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox on Tuesday.
Toru Hanai Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed March 5, 2014 2:10 pm

"The website of major bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox was offline Tuesday amid reports it suffered a debilitating theft, a new setback for efforts to gain legitimacy for the virtual currency," The Associated Press reports.

Also Tuesday, all the posts had been erased from the Mt. Gox Twitter account.

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Business
3:11 am
Tue February 25, 2014

Author Of Secret Goldman Sachs Elevator Tweets Outed

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 6:06 am

The author of the Twitter feed @GSElevator has been revealed. It turns out the tweets and Twitter feed were made up by a former bond trader who lives in Texas.

Business
3:11 am
Tue February 25, 2014

LinkedIn Launches Chinese-Language Website

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 6:06 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with LinkedIn in Chinese.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: The online professional network is launching a Chinese language website to expand its presence in China. LinkedIn's English site has been available in China for years. The company hopes to draw 140 million new users with its Chinese-language site, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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