Business

The Two-Way
4:58 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

GM Says New CEO Will Earn 60 Percent More Than Male Predecessor

New CEO of General Motors Mary Barra.
Michael Probst AP

General Motors took the unusual step of releasing full details of their new CEO's pay package.

All told, Mary Barra could make $14.4 million this year, or about 60 percent more than her male predecessor.

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Economy
10:05 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Worker Productivity Is Up, But Are Employers Sharing The Wealth?

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 12:06 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. We'd like to start the program today by talking about Friday's jobs report which was once again disappointing. The report also shared bad news for people who are working that wages remain stagnant.

There was good news, though, for employers. Worker productivity has gone up. We wanted to talk more about what productivity means and what this whole issue means for the economy, so we've called once again on NPR's senior business editor Marilyn Geewax. Welcome back, Marilyn.

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Business
5:45 am
Mon February 10, 2014

'Dumb Starbucks' Mocks Coffee Behemoth

"Dumb Starbucks" opened on Friday, serving free "dumb lattes" and other coffee drinks all weekend. The coffeehouse categorizes itself as a parody, protected by the "fair use" doctrine.

Europe
4:23 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Hollande's U.S. Visit To Send Signal To French Entrepreneurs

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 5:45 am

French President Francois Hollande arrives in the U.S. on Monday. In addition to a stop at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello in Virginia, Hollande will travel to Silicon Valley. The French president has been seen as anti-business, but he is trying to send a positive signal to French entrepreneurs with his visit to the world's high-tech capital.

Business
3:30 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Chinese Tech Giant Lenovo Extends Its Reach In U.S.

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 5:45 am

In January, Lenovo struck deals with two American companies. In a span of one week, the company spent roughly $5 billion to purchase both IBM's low-end server business and Google's Motorola mobile phone business. The moves help establish Lenovo as a global player.

Politics
3:18 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Does Congress Have Enough Political Will To Reduce The Debt?

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 8:24 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

When Congress reached a bipartisan budget deal last December, there was much fanfare about the compromises made by both parties. And immediately afterwards, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle began working to reverse one of the spending cuts - a small reduction in military pensions. One plan to restore those pensions is up for a vote today in the Senate. As NPR's Ailsa Chang reports, resistance against the small cut is calling into question whether Congress has the political will to reduce the long-term debt.

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Business
3:18 am
Mon February 10, 2014

Why Europe Is Interested In Closer Ties With Cuba

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 5:45 am

Foreign ministers from the 28 nations of the European Union are meeting in Brussels Monday to discuss boosting trade with Cuba. The EU lifted diplomatic sanctions on Cuba in 2008. Now Spain is leading an effort to lift commercial restrictions too.

Business
2:17 pm
Sun February 9, 2014

Funeral Home Kiosks Offer Shoppers The Ultimate Deal

Forest Lawn funeral services has a kiosk at the Glendale Galleria mall in Glendale, Calif., to reach potential customers who may not want to visit a funeral home.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Forest Lawn is a big name in the funeral business, and it has funeral homes all across Southern California. Most are stately, sprawling estates. But the Glendale location is a little different.

First off, it's tiny — the size of a typical funeral home bathroom. Second, there aren't any coffins or headstones for sale. There is an attendant, but he can't sell you anything: The urns are only on display. The place feels pretty inconspicuous. It could as easily be marketing homemade pottery as end-of-life planning.

It's also right in the middle of a shopping mall.

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The Two-Way
6:59 am
Sun February 9, 2014

Bangladesh Factory Owners Surrender In 2012 Fire That Killed 112

A Bangladeshi police officer walks between rows of burned sewing machines in the Tazreen Fashions garment factory outside Dhaka, Bangladesh, in Nov. 2012.
Khurshed Rinku AP

Originally published on Sun February 9, 2014 9:59 am

The owners of a Bangladesh garment factory that caught fire in 2012, killing 112 workers, have surrendered to police to face homicide charges.

Delwar Hossain and his wife, Mahmuda Akter, were charged in December but remained free until their surrender on Sunday. The couple were denied bail. If found guilty, they face a maximum sentence of life in prison.

The Tazreen Fashions factory, which produced clothing for retail giants such as Wal-Mart, lacked emergency exits and other safety measures.

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The New And The Next
3:09 pm
Sat February 8, 2014

Blowing Away The Limits Of Convention

Courtesy Ozy.com

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 4:34 pm

The online magazine Ozy covers people, places and trends on the horizon. Co-founder Carlos Watson joins All Things Considered regularly to tell us about the site's latest feature stories.

This week, Watson talks with host Arun Rath about a Tunisian inventor with a new design for wind turbines and why HBO's True Detective is so "seductive." They also discuss how Square, a device that enables smartphones and tablets to easily process credit cards, is changing the way people tip.

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The Two-Way
9:35 am
Sat February 8, 2014

French Court Orders Google To Display Notice On Its Search Page

A screenshot of the Google.fr homepage, displaying the court-ordered message.
Google

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 10:36 am

A court in France has ordered a most public shaming for Google, telling the Internet giant it must display a notice on its French search page acknowledging it's been fined over how it tracked and stored user information.

The $200,000 fine was imposed in January by the French National Commission for Computing and Civil Liberties (CNIL) for violating consumer privacy.

According to Google Translate, the above notice reads:

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The Two-Way
8:22 am
Sat February 8, 2014

Panama Canal Expansion Suspended Over Cost-Overrun Dispute

The stalled expansion project of the Panama Canal in Panama City on Thursday.
Mauricio Valenzuela Xinhua/Landov

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 10:44 am

A Spanish-led consortium charged with a multibillion-dollar expansion of the Panama Canal lock system has halted work after a disagreement over massive cost overruns in the project.

The BBC says the consortium, known as Grupo Unido por el Canal (GUPC), announced that work had been stopped because it's owed $1.6 billion for a project to build a third set of locks designed to handle bigger ships than can currently fit through the canal. The original price tag was set at $3.2 billion.

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Technology
8:20 am
Sat February 8, 2014

Found: The First Porsche — And It Was Electric!

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 10:05 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Porsche, the name is almost a synonym for sleek and fast. But the first car Ferdinand Porsche designed in 1898, when he was just 22, was boxy-looking and sputtered over streets at 21 miles per hour. And the P-1 was powered by electricity. The car has been parked in a garage in Austria since 1902. It is now on display at the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen.

We're joined by the director of that museum Achim Stejskal. Thanks very much for being with us.

ACHIM STEJSKAL: Good morning, Scott.

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Economy
7:43 am
Sat February 8, 2014

January Job Growth Disappoints, But Unemployment Drops

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 10:05 am

The U.S. added just 113,000 jobs in January, instead of the 180,000 analysts had predicted. Despite the anemic gains, the unemployment rate inched down to 6.6 percent, the lowest level since October 2008.

Business
2:18 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Disappointing Jobs Data May Point To A Tougher 2014

Job seekers sign in before meeting prospective employers during a career fair at a hotel in Dallas last month.
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 4:03 pm

Friday's unemployment report confirmed what many workers already had suspected: Five years after the job market plunged off a cliff, the climb back remains a tough slog.

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All Tech Considered
11:44 am
Fri February 7, 2014

How The Meritocracy Myth Affects Women In Technology

The gender gap in the tech industry will be the focus of a monthlong series on Tell Me More.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 10:40 am

The numbers on women in the tech industry are so out of whack that ladies register in the single digits: Women account for just 6 percent of the chief executives of the top 100 tech companies, according to the National Center for Women and Information Technology. And a New York Times count found that only 8 percent of venture-backed startups are founded by women.

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Business
9:26 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Jobs Report: Unemployment Ticks Down; Payrolls Tick Up

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

I'm Renee Montagne. And this morning brought another surprisingly weak jobs report. The government says the U.S. economy added just 113,000 jobs in January. That follows just 75,000 jobs in December. Those numbers are way below the average monthly job creation for most of 2013 and it has lots of people worried the economy may be losing steam. NPR's John Ydstie joins us again to talk about it. Good morning.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Renee.

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Business
5:43 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. Beats Profit Forecasts

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with growth for News Corp.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: The media company, controlled by Rupert Murdoch, reported profits that beat forecast. Its stock price climbed yesterday in late trading after the report was released. News Corp. posted gains in its digital real estate and book publishing services.

Still, the company, which publishes the Wall Street Journal, was hampered by declining advertising revenues in its newspaper business. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
4:50 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Job Growth Less Than Expected, But Unemployment Hits 5-Year Low

Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 11:06 am

Note: This post was updated several times after the jobs report was released at 8:30 a.m. ET.

The nation's unemployment rate slipped to 6.6 percent in January from 6.7 percent a month before, but employers added only 113,000 jobs to their payrolls last month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday morning.

The jobless rate figure was expected. The job growth number, however, was well below the 185,000 that economists expected.

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Race
3:25 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Coke Ad Sparks Cries On Social Media To 'Speak English'

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

At some point during tonight's opening ceremonies of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, NBC will run a much-talked about television ad for Coca-Cola.

(SOUNDBITE OF AD)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #1: (Singing) Oh, beautiful, for spacious skies...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #2: (Singing in foreign language)

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Business
3:12 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Designer Wants Your 'Social Currency' Instead Of Cash

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And our last word in business this morning is: social currency.

At one point, Facebook was valued at $100 billion.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And let's not forget that Instagram was bought for $1 billion.

MONTAGNE: And that by some accounts, Twitter is worth - well, it was worth over $18 billion.

GREENE: Well, now those socializing can get a bit of a profit pie. At Marc Jacobs' new pop-up shop in Manhattan, no cash is necessary. Social media is the capital.

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Business
3:12 am
Fri February 7, 2014

AOL Blames Obamacare For Changes To Retirement Benefits

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And let's hear now from the CEO who says Obamacare forced his hand when it comes to employee benefits. Tim Armstrong, the CEO of tech giant AOL, said the company had to change the way it matches the deposits employees make to their retirement accounts.

NPR's Richard Gonzales has more.

RICHARD GONZALES, BYLINE: Armstrong told CNBC that company costs due to Obamacare left him with a tough decision.

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Politics
3:05 am
Fri February 7, 2014

GOP Still Looking At Pieces Of Debt Limit 'Puzzle'

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 1:40 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. Today at the stroke of noon in Washington D. C. the U.S. Treasury statutory authority to borrow money will expire.

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Economy
3:03 am
Fri February 7, 2014

January Unemployment Numbers Expected To Rebound

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On a Friday this is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. There's lots of anticipation about the government's monthly jobs report that will be released later this morning. Last month's job creation numbers were very disappointing - just 74,000 jobs added to the payroll - far below the recent monthly averages. NPR's John Ydstie joined us to talk about job creation and what it's telling us about the economy. Good morning.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Renee.

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Around the Nation
1:25 am
Fri February 7, 2014

Post Office Could Rack Up Billions By Offering Money Services

U.S. Postal Service clerks help customers at the Los Feliz Post Office in Los Angeles.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:26 am

As the U.S. Postal Service continues to lose money each year, a new report suggests a way to add to its bottom line: offer banklike services, such as a check cashing card that would allow holders to make purchases and pay bills online or even take out small loans. The idea is to provide services that are now unavailable in many communities.

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Business
3:55 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Even As Dairy Industry Booms, There Are Fewer And Fewer Farms

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 5:55 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

On Friday, President Obama is scheduled to sign a new farm bill into law. It contains a provision that allows all dairy farms to be part of a safety net. The point is to offset risk when milk prices are too low or feed costs too high. But Abbie Fentress Swanson reports that even in good times, smaller dairy farms in traditional milk producing states are now giving up.

(SOUNDBITE OF COWS)

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The Salt
2:56 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Food Industry Groups Say They'll Label GMOs, On Their Terms

A woman shops at a supermarket in New York City.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 10, 2014 1:51 pm

Remember those ballot initiatives in California and Washington that aimed to get food companies to label products containing genetically modified ingredients?

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The Two-Way
1:37 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Another SAC Manager Found Guilty Of Insider Trading

Former SAC Capital Advisors portfolio manager Mathew Martoma walks out of the courthouse in downtown Manhattan, New York, on Thursday.
Eduardo Munoz Reuters/Landov

Mathew Martoma, a former portfolio manager with SAC Capital Advisors, has been convicted of helping the hedge fund reap hundreds of millions of dollars in illegal trades based on inside information. His is the latest in a series of legal actions related to the firm owned by billionaire Steven A. Cohen.

Martoma, 39, was found guilty by a federal jury in Manhattan on three counts of conspiracy and securities fraud related to trades made on inside information about a possible breakthrough in the treatment of Alzheimer's.

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All Tech Considered
1:20 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Author: When It Comes To High-Speed Internet, U.S. 'Falling Way Behind'

Susan Crawford says that in cities like Seoul and Stockholm, high-speed, high-capacity networks are taken for granted. "It really is astonishing what's going on in America," she says. "We're falling way behind in the pack of developed nations when it comes to high-speed Internet access, capacity and prices."
iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 10:41 am

For an increasing number of Americans, access to high-speed Internet has become an essential part of our lives. We do work, email friends, find restaurants, watch videos and movies, and check the weather. And the Internet is increasingly used for important services, like video medical consults and online education, and is relied upon by businesses for critical operations.

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Shots - Health News
12:59 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

Most Smokers Don't Buy Their Cigarettes At CVS

M. Spencer Green AP

Originally published on Thu February 6, 2014 3:31 pm

When CVS said it will stop selling cigarettes and tobacco products at its 7,600 pharmacies by October, President Obama hailed the company for setting a "powerful example."

The announcement Wednesday made us wonder — how many people actually buy their cigarettes from drugstores, anyway?

For answers, we turned to a 2012 survey of the retail tobacco market in the U.S. conducted by research firm Euromonitor International.

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