Business

Economy
5:33 pm
Sat March 15, 2014

With Some Moves In Congress, Jobless Still Struggle To Get By

On Thursday, the Senate reached a bipartisan agreement to renew jobless benefits for five months for the long-term unemployed. This comes after Congress failed to extend those benefits in December.

Sports
11:05 am
Sat March 15, 2014

Why You Won't Win Warren Buffett's Billion-Dollar Bracket

Florida's Will Yeguete shoots over Missouri's Keanau Post in the quarterfinal round of the Southeastern Conference men's tournament on Friday in Atlanta. Investor Warren Buffett is betting $1 billion that no one can pick all 63 winners of the NCAA college basketball tournament that begins next week.
John Bazemore AP

Originally published on Sat March 15, 2014 1:19 pm

The men's NCAA college basketball tournament starts next week.

In a twist on the familiar March Madness bracket, a mortgage company and a world-famous investor are offering a billion dollars to anyone who picks the winner of all 63 games in the NCAA college basketball tournament.

It's a contest, and it may also be the perfect publicity stunt.

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The Two-Way
6:12 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

FDIC Sues 16 Big Banks, Accusing Them Of Fixing Interest Rates

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 6:41 pm

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. has filed a lawsuit against 16 of the world's biggest banks, accusing them of fixing the London interbank offered rate and costing smaller, failed American banks money.

Bloomberg explains it like this:

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Around the Nation
4:06 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

For The Poor, Warmth In The Winter Comes At A Steep Price

Christopher Sessums Flickr

Originally published on Sat March 15, 2014 6:05 pm

Even as signs of spring emerge around the country, one particular remnant of winter remains: high energy bills. For low-income residents, a hefty heating bill can be an especially big burden, and not just in traditional cold-weather states.

In January, as temperatures dipped to record lows in eastern Tennessee, the Knoxville Utilities Board urged its customers: If you think you cannot pay your bill, call us. On average, gas bills were 29 percent higher than they were a year ago. And the poor have suffered even more, says Jeanie Fox, a customer counselor.

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The Two-Way
1:00 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Hong Kong Says UBS Tried To Rig Interbank Lending Rate

A directory board of Hong Kong Monetary Authority in Hong Kong. The territory's de facto central bank said evidence shows UBS tried to manipulate the interbank lending rate.
Tyrone Siu Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 2:20 pm

UBS, which was fined $1.5 billion in 2012 for what regulators said was "routine and widespread" rigging of the London interbank offered rate, or Libor, has been censured for trying to do the same thing with Hong Kong's benchmark rate between 2006 and 2009.

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Business
12:01 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Obama Pushes For Overtime Pay Protection

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 12:27 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Business
6:02 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Conn. Papers Fight Proposals To Alter Publication Of Legal Notices

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 11:27 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

As the slump in newspaper advertising revenue continues, publishers are trying to hold on to one line of stable cash - the legal notice in print. In Connecticut, municipal leaders are pushing for a change in state law that would cut back on those legal notices.

Jeff Cohen from member station WNPR has this report on the pushback from newspapers.

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Economy
5:03 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Senators Agree To Compromise Extending Jobless Benefits

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 11:27 am

Negotiators in the Senate reached a bi-partisan deal to extend unemployment benefits for 5 months, retroactive to the end of last year. A full Senate vote isn't expected until later this month.

Parallels
4:47 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

The World Bank Gets An Overhaul — And Not Everyone's Happy

Jim Yong Kim joined the World Bank as president in 2012.
Michel Euler AP

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 6:35 pm

The World Bank, the largest international development institution, is undergoing a sweeping reorganization, the first of its kind for the bank in nearly a generation.

The bank, based in Washington, has laid out a new set of goals, but they're accompanied by deep budget cuts and the elimination of a whole layer of senior management jobs.

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Business
4:47 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Report: Target Missed Its Chance To Prevent Data Breach

Target missed security warnings about a data breach, which resulted in 40 million customer credit and debit cards numbers being stolen.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Fri March 14, 2014 12:42 pm

Late last year, during the holiday season, hackers somewhere in Europe stole 40 million credit and debit card numbers and tens of millions of other pieces of personal information from Target customers in the United States. As reported by Bloomberg Businessweek's Michael Riley, the malware attack wasn't particularly sophisticated or unique, and Target's security systems were extensive and ready for such an attack — and yet Target missed the early security warnings.

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Business
4:47 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Employers React To New Overtime Expansion

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 6:35 pm

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 Two-Way
3:10 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Obama: If You 'Work More, You Should Get Paid More'

President Obama signs a memorandum for overtime protections for workers, at the White House on Thursday.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 7:50 pm

Flanked by a cadre of salaried workers, President Obama signed a memo directing his labor secretary to rewrite the rules governing overtime in the country.

"Americans have spent too much time working more and making less," Obama said during comments preceding the signing ceremony.

Obama's proposal would rewrite a commonly used exemption in which a salaried worker designated as "executive, administrative and professional" is denied overtime if he or she is making more than $455 a week.

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Economy
12:28 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Gentrification: Progress Or Destruction?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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The Two-Way
9:01 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Weekly Jobless Claims Touch 3-Month Low

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 10:41 am

There were 315,000 first-time claims filed for unemployment benefits last week, the Employment and Training Administration says.

That's down 9,000 from the previous week and marks a three-month low.

So for the second straight week, there's at least modestly good news to report about the labor market.

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Business
8:49 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Overtime Pay Proposal Triggers A New Debate About Wages

Economists are divided about the White House plan to boost overtime pay for workers.
Doug Finger Gainesville Sun/Landov

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 2:56 pm

On Thursday, President Obama rolled out his plan for strengthening overtime pay protections for millions of workers. In his view, if more workers got fatter paychecks, they could spend more and stimulate the economy.

But if his critics are right, then employers would end up laying off workers to make up for the higher wage costs. And that would hurt the already painfully slow recovery.

Which scenario is right?

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Business
5:27 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Number Of Calif. Homes In Foreclosure Process Soars

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 7:44 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And there's some good news for the nation's housing market. Numbers are out today and national foreclosure filings in February were the lowest they've been since 2006. That means on a national level, lenders repossessed fewer homes and fewer homeowners got in mortgage trouble. That's not the case though, here in California.

As NPR's Nathan Rott reports, the number of homes just entering the foreclosure process here is way up.

NATHAN ROTT, BYLINE: Berlinda Phommalayvane has a story that isn't uncommon in Southern California.

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NPR Story
5:05 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Senate Committee To Consider Fischer For Fed's No. 2 Spot

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 7:44 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Stanley Fischer used to be head Israel's Central Bank, and he was once second in command at the International Monetary Fund. Barring the unexpected, he'll soon be confirmed as vice-chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve. President Obama nominated him for that post. And today he'll go before the Senate Banking Committee.

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Politics
5:05 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Obama To Push Expanded Overtime Pay

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 7:44 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Today, President Obama will tell the Department of Labor to rethink the rules for how employers pay overtime. The president wants millions more people to get paid overtime, particularly those who are exempt. And by signing a presidential memo to the department, he doesn't have to ask Congress to make that happen.

NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith reports.

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Business
4:59 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Health Care Law Helps Entrepreneurs Quit Their Day Jobs

The Affordable Care Act could encourage people to start new businesses by solving an age-old problem: job lock.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 6:37 am

The Affordable Care Act — which many see creating challenges for businesses — could benefit a particular group of business people: entrepreneurs.

Joshua Simonson was reluctant to give up his job at a Portland, Ore., area grocery store, New Seasons Market, which he says had provided excellent health care for him and his family. He had a pre-existing condition that has prevented him from getting insurance in the private market, but one key development helped convince him to quit and start a farm.

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News
4:12 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

FTC Investigates Herbalife, Following Claims It's A Pyramid Scheme

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 8:14 pm

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.

News
4:12 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

President Obama Moves To Expand Overtime Pay

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 8:14 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. President Obama is taking another step to raise the wages of workers and he plans to do it without getting Congress involved. The White House says tomorrow Obama will direct the Labor Department to change the rules for businesses on overtime pay. The change could mean that millions of private sector workers currently classified as management could eventually qualify for overtime.

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Around the Nation
4:12 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Government's Empty Buildings Are Costing Taxpayers Billions

A 132-year-old building owned by the federal government, just six blocks from the White House, has been sitting empty for three decades.
Laura Sullivan NPR

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 12:07 pm

On a street corner in downtown Washington, D.C., David Wise is opening a century-old iron gate in front of an old, boarded-up brick building.

Wise is an investigator for the Government Accountability Office, the government's watchdog group. His mission is to figure out why the government owns so many buildings, like this one, that it doesn't use.

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It's All Politics
2:11 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Obama's Overtime Move Designed To Excite Base, Swing Voters

President Obama speaks about raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour during an event last week in New Britain, Conn. The effort to raise wages is seen as part of his State of the Union promise of a "year of action."
Stephan Savoia AP

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 10:42 am

President Obama's planned move to expand the pool of the nation's employees covered by overtime pay laws was hailed Wednesday by Democrats as key to their midterm election strategy.

And it was just as predictably criticized by conservatives as an overreach by a president who recently characterized income inequality as the "defining challenge of our time."

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#NPRWIT: Women In Tech
2:10 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Nigeria's First Female Finance Minister: Still Big Problems In Soaring Economy

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 3:19 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Around the Nation
1:51 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Juggling Work And Motherhood On A Shoestring Budget

Katrina Gilbert, a single mother raising Brooklynn, Trent and Lydia, says she got involved with an HBO documentary to inspire others.
Barbara Kinney/Courtesy of HBO

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 10:06 pm

There are more than 4 million American families living under the poverty line today that are led by a single mother. Katrina Gilbert is one of those moms.

Gilbert is a certified nursing assistant in Tennessee. To support her three children, she sometimes works seven days a week at a nursing home. But at $10 an hour, her paycheck doesn't go very far.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Reports: Obama Will Move To Expand Overtime Pay

Punching a time card: It's still one way of tracking hours worked. President Obama believes more workers need to be able to add overtime to their pay.
Armin Weigel dpa/Landov

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 1:37 pm

The Obama administration's push to put income inequality atop the domestic political agenda has another battlefront.

According to The New York Times, the president "this week will seek to force American businesses to pay more overtime to millions of workers, the latest move by his administration to confront corporations that have had soaring profits even as wages have stagnated."

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Politics
6:35 am
Wed March 12, 2014

White House Meeting To Examine Women's Pay

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:32 am

President Obama is expected to meet on Wednesday with female members of Congress. There are reasons for the president's focus on women that involve both policy and politics.

Economy
6:05 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Study: Boys Report PTSD When Moved Out Of Poverty

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:32 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In the 1990s, the U.S. government embarked on an ambitious social experiment to try to help people get out of poverty. The Moving to Opportunity Program gave housing vouchers to single mothers so they could raise their kids in areas with better job prospects and better schools. The hope was the families would thrive.

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Business
6:02 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Bipartisan Plan Reached On Fannie-Freddie Overhaul

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:32 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Senate lawmakers, this week, are announcing a bipartisan plan to overhaul the nation's mortgage market. The stock prices of the government-controlled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac plunged on the news.

NPR's Chris Arnold has our report.

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Business
5:55 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Philadelphia Capitalizes On Energy Boom

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:32 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The shale oil boom is having a major impact on cities across the U.S. In Philadelphia, trains bringing crude oil from North Dakota have helped revived refineries there. Plus, other businesses are now eagerly looking for ways to tap into Pennsylvania's own vast supply of natural gas.

Katie Colaneri of member station WHYY reports.

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