Jim Zarroli

Jim Zarroli is a business reporter for NPR News, based at NPR's New York bureau.

He covers economics and business news including fiscal policy, the Federal Reserve, the job market and taxes

Over the years, he's reported on recessions and booms, crashes and rallies, and a long string of tax dodgers, insider traders and Ponzi schemers. He's been heavily involved in the coverage of the European debt crisis and the bank bailouts in the United States.

Prior to moving into his current role, Zarroli served as a New York-based general assignment reporter for NPR News. While in this position he covered the United Nations during the first Gulf War. Zarroli added to NPR's coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the London transit bombings and the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center.

Before joining the NPR in 1996, Zarroli worked for the Pittsburgh Press and wrote for various print publications.

Zarroli graduated from Pennsylvania State University.

The FBI and the Securities and Exchange Commission revealed this week that they're both investigating the world of high-frequency stock trading. They did so at a time when a new book on the subject, Flash Boys by Michael Lewis, is causing an uproar on Wall Street.

To read Lewis' book is to be reminded of how drastically the stock market has changed in a decade — and how opaque it remains. Lewis says this opacity serves to cover up some disturbing developments.

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/.

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The crisis in Ukraine is raising new questions about Russia's role in the energy markets. Moscow has long used exports of oil and natural gas to win political concessions from countries on its borders. Europe gets a quarter of its natural gas from Russia.

As NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, that's making a lot of people there nervous.

A federal court jury in New York found 5 of Bernard Madoff's former employees guilty of fraud. They were accused of enriching themselves by helping the imprisoned financier carry out a Ponzi scheme.

Five of Bernie Madoff's former employees were found guilty of helping him fleece investors of $17 billion. They were convicted on charges of securities fraud, conspiracy and tax evasion.

Russian officials were quick to mock the limited economic sanctions on Moscow announced by the U.S. and Europe this week. In response to Russia's annexation of Crimea, Western leaders have frozen the assets of a handful of government officials and also barred them from getting visas to travel to the West.

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And the Chinese Internet giant Alibaba says it plans to launch an initial public offering in the United States. Alibaba is known as the Chinese Google. and the IPO could be one of the biggest offerings in the history of the technology sector.

As NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, buying shares in the company brings some risk.

President Obama is directing his Labor Secretary to tighten U.S. overtime laws. Under the changes, millions of workers will become eligible. Business groups are now reacting to the news.

The nutrition supplement company has been under attack by billionaire investor William Ackman, who's been pressing regulators to look into the way Herbalife operates.

Herbalife shares dropped on news the Federal Trade Commission is investigating the company. After shorting Herbalife's stock, hedge fund manager Bill Ackman's been lobbying politicians to investigate.

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President Obama and Russian President Putin have had another long telephone conversation about how to end the crisis in Ukraine. The White House says President Obama stressed that a diplomatic solution is possible, but Russian soldiers have to leave their current positions in Crimea and return to their base in the region.

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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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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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Netflix is hoping that a deal it has struck with Comcast will mollify some of its unhappy customers. The company announced yesterday that it will pay to connect Comcast's broadband network more directly. That means Netflix customers should get faster, smoother access to programs like "House of Cards." The deal could serve as a model to help the company resolve disputes with other big Internet service providers.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

Under the deal, Netflix will pay Comcast a fee to ensure its movies and TV shows stream smoothly. Consumers complain they encounter buffering and slowdowns when they try to access Netflix shows.

Suzie Felber's kids are only just learning what a commercial is.

"They start screaming when they come on," she says. "They think the TV's broken."

The Felbers usually stream television shows over the Internet in their New Jersey home.

More and more people are following suit, using services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. But these programs take up a huge amount of digital bandwidth, and that's led to a dispute between these services and the Internet service providers that carry them.

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New York State regulators are looking into allegations of currency manipulation by traders at more than a dozen big banks. This effort is part of a global investigation into foreign exchange practices that's already cost several traders their jobs.

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NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

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A top executive at the retail chain Target went to Capitol Hill today to try to explain the massive security breach that hit the company in December. Hackers stole personal information of tens of millions of Target customers during the holiday shopping season. The incident has underscored the increasing sophistication of cyber criminals and the vulnerability of big retailers. NPR's Jim Zarroli has more on the hearing.

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The stock market had one of its worst days in months today after some disappointing news about manufacturing. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 300 points, about two percent. The other major indexes were down even more.

NPR's Jim Zarroli tells us investors are reacting to new concern about the health of the global economy.

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And a jury in New York is expected to begin deciding the fate of Matthew Martoma this week. A former portfolio manager at the hedge fund company SAC Capital Advisors, Martoma is accused of insider trading. Officials say he sold shares of two pharmaceutical companies after obtaining inside information about drugs being developed.

NPR's Jim Zarroli has more.

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After losing a lot of ground, stock prices were back up a bit today. Investor anxiety about the state of the world's currency markets seemed to ease. The current turmoil is reminiscent of the 1997 currency crisis in Asia, which hurt economies all over the world.

As NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, there are also some big differences.

Federal Reserve officials are meeting this week to decide whether to continue easing up on economic stimulus measures. The pullback by the Fed so far is being felt around the world, especially in some emerging markets.

A new study finds that contrary to widespread belief, it's no harder to climb the economic ladder in the United States today than it was 20 years ago.

But the study did find that moving up that ladder is still a lot more difficult in the U.S. than in other developed countries.

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Over the past week or so, most of the country's banks have reported their profits for the last quarter of 2013. The numbers, mostly, have better than most analysts expected. After a rough few years, most big financial institutions are faring pretty well. But there's some debate about how sustainable the numbers really are.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

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After a slow start, the Affordable Care Act is now attracting customers at a healthier pace. The government said yesterday that 2.2 million people have signed up for health insurance under the state and federal exchanges. But there's a serious red flag. A disproportionate number of new enrollees are middle aged or older.

Here's NPR's Jim Zarroli on what that means for the program and for insurers.

JPMorgan Chase has agreed with the U.S. government to settle criminal charges that it failed to report suspicious activity in Bernard Madoff's accounts. The settlement comes to $2.6 billion, but a representative for Madoff's victims says the amount is too small. Madoff bilked investors out of many billions of dollars while JP Morgan Chase was his primary bank.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. has agreed to pay $1.7 billion to settle criminal charges accusing the bank of ignoring obvious warning signs of Bernard Madoff's massive Ponzi scheme.

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2013 was a so-so time for the U.S. economy, but it was a banner year for the stock market. Investors poured money into stocks, driving up prices to record highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished the year up 26 percent. The S&P 500 did even better. NPR's Jim Zarroli looks at how the market defied expectations.

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Other signs of strength in the economy are sending interest rates higher. Yesterday, the yield on the 10-year Treasury note briefly rose above the psychologically important level of 3 percent.

NPR's Jim Zarroli has that story.

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