Business

Research News
2:54 am
Thu November 7, 2013

Why Do People Agree To Work In Boring Jobs?

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 4:15 am

In the essay "The Myth of Sisyphus," philosopher Albert Camus — who would have turned 100 on Thursday — explored the nature of boring work. There's new psychological research into why people end up in boring jobs.

Business
2:43 am
Thu November 7, 2013

Most Remaining Blockbusters To Close In January

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 2:54 am

Blockbuster is going to shut all of its company-owned stores. Some franchise stores will stay open. At its peak, the video rental chain had about 9,000 stores.

Business
12:58 am
Thu November 7, 2013

No Room For Erasers, As Technology Deletes Pen Businesses

In the 1800s, fountain pens were the height of writing technology, allowing writers to pen words continuously without stopping for an ink dip.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 11:09 am

We tweet. We text. We email. But how often do we really write anymore? Not much, if you look at the business of selling pens — or "fine writing instruments," as shop owners call them. With their writing tools becoming obsolete, pen stores have folded, including a century-old shop in New York.

But despite the tech-heavy trends, a few old-fashioned pen stores are still holding on.

Wood Shelves, Ink Bottles, And Sinatra

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The Two-Way
4:02 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Judge: MF Global Customers To Recover All Their Losses

Jon Corzine, former New Jersey governor and ex-CEO of MF Global, leaves a congressional hearing in 2011.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 4:35 pm

One thread runs through nearly every story of financial fraud, from Enron to Madoff: Investors bilked out of their money rarely get it back.

So, this lead from The New York Times Dealbook blog caught our attention:

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Around the Nation
3:01 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Despite Barriers, Farm Worker Breaks Silence About Rape Case

Guadalupe Chavez moved to a trailer home in Oregon after her sexual assault case went to trial in California.
Grace Rubenstein Center for Investigative Reporting

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 4:21 pm

This is the second story in a two-part report about sexual assault of agricultural workers in the U.S. Read part one.

It started with a missing paycheck.

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Intelligence Squared U.S.
9:58 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Should Anyone Be Able To Take A Job Anywhere?

Kathleen Newland and Ron Unz argued against the motion "Let Anyone Take A Job Anywhere" in an Intelligence Squared U.S. debate on Oct. 30.
Samuel LaHoz Intelligence Squared U.S.

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 1:22 pm

  • Listen To The Full Audio Of The Debate
  • Listen To The Broadcast Version Of The Debate

In a global economy, does it make sense to allow workers to move freely?

Letting people go where the jobs are would improve the lives of millions around the world, some argue. But others say an influx of labor into the richest countries would devalue workers' worth and actually hurt more in the long run.

A group of experts recently took on this question in an Oxford-style debate for Intelligence Squared U.S. They faced off two against two on the motion "Let Anyone Take A Job Anywhere."

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Shots - Health News
7:17 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Administration Looks To Give Labor Unions Health Tax Relief

Union member Tom Stensberg holds a sign thanking Congress for the Affordable Care Act during a rally hosted by the AFL-CIO at the U.S. Capitol in May 2010.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Weeks after denying labor's request to give union members access to health law subsidies, the Obama administration is signaling it intends to exempt some union plans from one of the law's substantial taxes.

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Business
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Copy Of Napoleon's Will To Be Sold At Auction

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 6:21 am

The last will and testament of the man who once conquered much of Europe is being auctioned in Paris. It is expected to go for more than $100,000. The original letter in Napoleon's illegible handwriting is in France's National Archives.

Business
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Seattle Suburb Backs Higher Minimum Wage

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 4:54 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

A pay hike for thousands is at the top of NPR's business news.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In the Seattle suburb of SeaTac, supporters of a ballot initiative implementing a $15 hourly minimum wage are declaring victory. The measure would benefit some 6,300 workers in the travel and hospitality industries around Seattle's main international airport.

Business
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Google's Barge Provokes Wild Expectations

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 6:25 am

A mysterious barge stacked with shipping containers is docked at a pier on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay. It's owned by Google but Google isn't revealing the reason the barge is there. The barge has captured the imagination of people around the globe.

Business
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Twitter's IPO Managed Differently Than Other Tech Stocks

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 3:38 am

What makes an initial public offering a success? Twitter is going the old school route, pricing its shares modestly in hopes of a pop in early trading. The company will go public on Thursday, and the banks they've hired to help are some of the oldest and most well established in the country.

Politics
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Obama To Visit Dallas To Smooth Bumps In Health Care Sign-Up

Originally published on Thu November 7, 2013 7:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Today, President Obama meets some of the volunteers trying to sign up Americans for health insurance. The volunteers work in Texas, where the president is traveling.

MONTAGNE: The trip to Dallas is partly to raise money for Democratic Senate candidates, and partly the promote the new health care law. But in Dallas, it's hard to miss the current gap between that law's ambition and its current execution.

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Business
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Sprecher Slams High-Speed Electronic Exchanges

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 3:26 am

The CEO of the firm that's about to take over the New York Stock Exchange has criticized alternative market trading. Jeffrey Sprecher said equity markets, including the NYSE, allow sophisticated traders to take advantage of small investors. He added such models are destined to fail and that people outside the markets have a sense things aren't fair.

Remembrances
2:42 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Remembering Chef Charlie Trotter, Chicago Fine-Dining Visionary

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 12:55 pm

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Around the Nation
1:05 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Starbucks Is Latest Company Aiming To Help Vets Land Jobs

Seattle coffee giant Starbucks says the company will hire at least 10,000 veterans or their spouses over the next five years.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 7:22 am

In recent years, companies ranging from JPMorgan Chase to Walmart to Boeing have announced special hiring programs for veterans. Seattle coffee giant Starbucks is the latest.

All of these companies are trying to bring down a stubbornly high unemployment rate for veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. But to succeed, companies have to take the time to understand the skills of service members.

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Planet Money
1:04 am
Wed November 6, 2013

I Applied For An Online Payday Loan. Here's What Happened Next

eTaxLoan.com

Originally published on Wed November 6, 2013 3:06 pm

Payday lenders made about $49 billion in high-interest loans last year. More than a third of those loans were made online. I wondered what happens when you apply for such a loan, so I decided to find out.

In the course of reporting a story earlier this year, I logged on to a site called eTaxLoan.com and filled out an application.

I asked for $500 and, to be safe, I made up an address, a name (Mary) and a Social Security number. The site asked for more sensitive stuff — a bank account number and a routing number — and I made that up, too.

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The Two-Way
4:26 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

41 Hours Of Retail: Kmart's Black Friday Plan Is Criticized

Kmart's plan to be open for 41 straight hours beginning at 6 a.m. Thanksgiving morning is drawing criticism. At this Kmart store in Connecticut, shoppers wait in line to take advantage of sales on Thanksgiving Day.
Douglas Healey AP

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 5:10 pm

It's only been hours since Kmart announced its Black Friday plan — to remain open for 41 hours in a row beginning early on Thanksgiving Day. But online critics are throwing a red light on the plan, with some calling the company a Grinch for its aggressive approach to the start of the Christmas shopping season.

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Around the Nation
3:42 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Silenced By Status, Farm Workers Face Rape, Sexual Abuse

Maricruz Ladino packs lettuce in a cooler in Salinas, Calif.
Grace Rubenstein Center for Investigative Reporting

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 4:36 pm

This is part one of a two-part report about sexual assault of agricultural workers in the U.S.

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The Two-Way
3:14 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Apple's Decision To Make Glass In Arizona Will Create Hundreds Of Jobs

Apple has bought a factory in Arizona that will be re-purposed to make sapphire glass. The material is used in the iPhone 5s, seen here, as well as in the wristwatch industry.
Andy Wong AP

Technology giant Apple is buying a large manufacturing space in Arizona, where high-tech glass for its devices will be produced. The move is being hailed in Arizona, where the economy remains slowed by the U.S. housing market crisis.

From Phoenix, Mark Moran of member station KJZZ reports for our Newscast unit:

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All Tech Considered
10:56 am
Tue November 5, 2013

One Reason Twitter's Confident About Its Ad Possibilities

Twitter announced that it has set a price range for its initial public offering between $17 and $20 per share and hopes to sell 70 million shares.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

One of the big questions facing social media giant Twitter ahead of its New York Stock Exchange debut this week is how much money it could actually make for investors.

"We have incurred significant operating losses in the past, and we may not be able to achieve or subsequently maintain profitability," the company writes, in its business prospectus.

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U.S.
9:54 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Ban The Box: Some Companies Stop Asking Job Applicants About Criminal History

Big box retailer Target said it will remove questions about prior arrests on its job applications, but many companies still ask. Host Michel Martin speaks with Madeline Neighly from the National Employment Law Project and Elizabeth Milito from the National Federation of Independent Businesses about the pros and cons of the practice.

Shots - Health News
9:17 am
Tue November 5, 2013

For Many Workers, It's Time To Consider Insurance Options

It's open enrollment time again, the autumn period when many people with job-based health insurance ante up for another year.

Although news reports have fixated on the problems with the online health marketplaces that launched Oct. 1, for the vast majority of people that's a nonissue. If they get insurance through a job at a company that has at least 50 employees, they probably won't be using the marketplaces, also called exchanges.

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Business
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Johnson & Johnson Settles Marketing Charges

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:08 am

Johnson & Johnson became the latest drugmaker to reach a costly agreement with the federal government over charges of improper marketing. The widely anticipated settlement, unveiled Monday, covers Natrecor, a drug for congestive heart failure, and antipsychotics Risperdal and Invega.

Sports
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Sacramento Kings Look To India To Attract New NBA Fans

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:24 am

Last year, Sacramento Kings fans were saying goodbye, expecting the NBA team to move to Seattle. But new ownership came together just in time, and the Kings stayed put. The new management plans to build the Kings into a contender, and a big part of that blueprint involves building up a fan base in — believe it or not — India.

Health Care
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Insurance Firms Forced To Cancel Many Individual Policies

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:08 am

More than 12 million Americans buy health insurance on their own, and many are getting cancellation notices because their individual coverage does not meet the standards of the Affordable Care Act. This is causing anxiety and anger — especially since most of these people can't get onto the healthcare.gov website to figure out their options for 2014.

Business
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

'Bloomberg Markets' Magazine Reveals Hidden Billionaires

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:15 am

The world's top 100 billionaires have a combined fortune of $2.1 trillion, according to Bloomberg Markets magazine. In the latest issue out Tuesday, it lists the richest of the rich. Morning Edition's David Greene talked to editor Matthew Miller, who oversees the rankings.

Business
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Billionaires Find New York Real Estate A Bargain

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 4:22 am

Luxury property in the Big Apple goes for an average of around $2,000 a square foot. Much cheaper than comparable apartments in London at nearly $10,000 a square foot or $8,800 in Hong Kong. But The New York Times reports with the wealthy flocking to Manhattan, prices are going up.

Politics
2:02 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Senate Advances Employment Non-Discrimination Act

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:08 am

With a vote of 61-30, the Senate voted to move forward on legislation that would prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. Monday's vote opens the floor to debate on the bill and the Senate is expected to schedule a full vote by week's end.

Shots - Health News
12:58 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Call Centers Got Big Deals Under Health Law, But How Big?

Do you have questions about the bronze plan?
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 3:08 am

Before the Affordable Care Act was even open for enrollment, Viviana Alvarado was already taking calls from people who wanted to know more.

She and about 40 of her colleagues are staffing the phones for Maximus, the company Connecticut has contracted to run its call center.

The government contractors running the troubled HealthCare.gov website have been under intense scrutiny in the past month, but those businesses aren't the only ones being paid to rollout Obamacare.

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All Tech Considered
2:42 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

Sportvision Wants To Take You (Home) To The Ballgame

Sportvision uses helicopter and water-based platforms to superimpose the national flags of competing teams over broadcasts of the America's Cup sailing competitions.
Courtesy of Sportvision

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 1:26 pm

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