They say an oilman has to be a gambler, but can he be a prophet?
Zion Oil & Gas, based in Dallas, is a publicly traded company that believes it is commanded by the Bible to search for oil in Israel, both to help the Holy Land and make money for investors. The 22 employees of Zion Oil in Texas and Israel, and many of its 30,000 investors, believe the company is on a mission from God.
An investigation by The Hollywood Reporter alleges that the American Humane Association has tried to cover up instances of animal abuse and deaths on Hollywood sets. Melissa Block talks with Gary Baum, a senior writer for the magazine who reported the story.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block.
An internal review of a report that aired on CBS' "60 Minutes" about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, reached damning conclusions. Now, Laura Logan, the CBS correspondent who reported that story, and her producer are taking leaves of absence at management's request.
Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 7:09 am
CBS has asked 60 Minutes correspondent Lara Logan to take a leave of absence, along with her producer, after her recent story on the deadly 2012 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, was found to have multiple flaws. An internal report also found broader failings in how the news division handled the story. A summary of the report's findings was obtained by NPR on Tuesday.
Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 3:47 pm
The online retailer Newegg has lost a patent case centering on Web encryption, after a Texas jury rejected its argument that a claim from the company TQP Development was invalid. The jury ordered Newegg to pay $2.3 million — less than half the damages TQP had sought.
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear cases brought by companies who say they have religious objections to the Affordable Care Act's requirement that they offer employees health insurance that includes contraception benefits.
In a statement released late Tuesday morning, justices say they have consolidated four related cases and will hear one hour of oral arguments. That will happen next year, likely in late March.
Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 8:07 am
While home prices rose in major cities across the nation during the third quarter, data suggest that the housing market is beginning to shift to a slower rate of growth, according to the economists who put together the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report.
Their statistics show prices rose 3.2 percent in the quarter and were up 11.2 percent from a year earlier.
NPR's business news begins with a new chief at Wal-Mart.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
GREENE: Doug McMillon of Jonesboro, Arkansas, started at Wal-Mart in 1984. It was a summer job, he was unpacking trucks. Yesterday, he was named as the retail giant's new CEO. Not only is the 47-year-old McMillon an insider who rose through the ranks, he's one of the few executives who actually worked under founder Sam Walton.
The United Nations negotiations in Warsaw over a climate treaty are moving at glacial speed — and that's in part because there's a fundamental problem.
In the coming decades, carbon dioxide emissions from China, India and other rapidly developing countries are expected to grow quickly. Residents there aspire to lifestyles Americans and Europeans enjoy today, and those nations aren't willing to slash emissions, because doing so could slow their economic growth.
The 3D space epic Gravity made $35.5 million over its first weekend in China. Catching Fire, the second in the Hunger Games franchise opened two days later. The China Film Group says it does that to "create a space for domestic movies to survive and grow."
NPR's business news starts with no salary cap for Swiss executives.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
GREENE: A proposal in Switzerland to limit executive pay has been rejected by voters there. As we reported on the program last week, the initiative would have meant that an executive could never earn more money in a month than what the lowest-paid employee earns in a year.
Commerce has returned to the storm-savaged streets of Tacloban in the past week. People sell bananas along the roads, and a bustling market has sprung up across several blocks downtown.
Jimbo Tampol, who works for a local Coca-Cola distributor, drives across Tacloban selling ice-cold sodas from coolers. In a city where there is no electricity and little refrigeration, a cold soda is a big deal, a symbol of normalcy.
If you've seen the 2012 science fiction movie Looper, you might remember a telling exchange when a time-traveling hitman (Bruce Willis) sits down with a young version of himself (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) and offers some advice.
Some of the sanctions against Iran will be eased under an agreement reached between Iran and six world powers over the weekend. In return, Iran promises to temporarily curb part of its nuclear program.
There's widespread agreement that sanctions have worked, squeezing Iran financially and bringing its leaders to the negotiating table. Iran's economy is, by any measure, in terrible shape.
This week, JPMorgan Chase agreed to a $13 billion settlement with the Justice Department over the sale of faulty mortgage securities that led to the financial crisis. It's the largest settlement with a single company in U.S. history.
From that settlement, $4 billion must go to help the millions of families who saw the values of their homes plummet and who still struggle to keep up with mortgage payments.
Public transit vehicles may be the key to China's success in the U.S. auto market. Chinese company BYD, based in Shenzhen, is manufacturing electric buses. It's an appealing option for a place like California, where emission standards are strict.
At BYD's North American headquarters in Los Angeles, one of the 40-foot electric K9 buses sits on display. BYD Fleet Sales Manager James Holtz sits in the driver's seat and pushes the power button on the dashboard.
Originally published on Sun November 24, 2013 10:15 am
The anti-poverty group Oxfam is asking Pepsi's shareholders to approve a resolution that, if passed, would force the company to disclose its sugar suppliers and investigate whether those suppliers are implicated in "land grabs" that unfairly take land from the poor.
Of the $13 billion settlement between JPMorgan and the Justice Department, $1.5 billion will go to underwater homeowners to help them avoid foreclosures. Host Scott Simon speaks with NPR economics correspondent Chris Arnold about how the settlement will be spent.
While there is widespread frustration over the rollout of the health insurance exchanges, some people see opportunities. Venture capitalists are thinking a lot about what the health care industry may look like in the future while they invest today. Annie Lamont has been a health care venture capitalist for over 30 years. She's a managing partner at Oak Investment Partners. And we asked her what opportunities she sees coming up in her field.