National/International

How to prevent a financial crisis

Jun 22, 2017

The Federal Reserve is releasing the first part of its annual stress tests for big banks today. All of the major banks are expected to pass this year, which is good news if you want to see the U.S. financial system survive a future crisis. The test applies to more than 30 of the biggest banks in the country, and aims to ensure that banks have enough cash reserves to withstand a severe global recession like the 2008 financial crisis.

For NBA stars, branding goes beyond the court

Jun 22, 2017
GettyImages-693508646.jpg
Andy Uhler

Remember these commercials?

The shoes were Nikes, but to basically every kid in America, they were "Air Jordans."

Michael Jordan was, and still is, the brand. His net worth today is $1.3 billion.

The lucrative partnership is an example of how Nike leveraged an athlete's popularity to sell shoes. Back then, what mattered most was Jordan being a great player. Nowadays, how good you are on the court is only one factor in a star athlete's earning potential.

ontheroad.jpg
David Brancaccio

It feels like America is more divided than ever before.

Surveys even show that the country's major political parties have very unfavorable views of each other. But maybe we need to reframe the cause of some of the polarization happening in our country.

06/22/2017: The rise of cryptocurrencies

Jun 22, 2017
bitcoin_8.jpg
Marketplace

Uber is looking to the future after investors pushed CEO Travis Kalanick to resign. But with old lawsuits still trailing the company, we'll discuss whether Uber can truly move forward and if an IPO is in its near future. Afterwards, we'll look at Tesla's scramble to keep up in the self-driving car race, and then talk about the surge in cryptocurrency prices over the last few months.

06/22/2017: America's great divide

Jun 22, 2017
town_0.jpg
Marketplace

In just a few hours, we should have a draft of the Senate's health care overhaul. But even though it hasn't been officially released, parts of the bill have been leaking. On today's show, we'll discuss some of the reforms the measure calls for, which will outline how much power states would have and how Medicaid could change. Afterwards, we'll chat with Guardian reporter Chris Arnade about how divisions in America may not necessarily have to do with a liberal-conservative construct, but with those who left their hometowns vs. those who stayed. 

Mexican women lead initiatives to rescue native tongues

Jun 21, 2017

When Gabriela Badillo traveled to Mérida, Yucatán, more than a decade ago, she encountered children who were timid about speaking the Mayan language. As she later came to understand, fear and discrimination were factors that affected the home teaching and use of the region’s native tongue.

“Children were a bit embarrassed to speak Mayan. ... Some mothers opted to not teach them the native tongue to avoid discrimination,” Badillo recalled.

Used to be if you wanted some hand-hewn dreamcatcher earrings or a wallet made of duct tape, there was one place to go: Etsy. The e-commerce website brought artisan-crafted products to customers around the world. It launched with four employees in 2005 and grew into a $1.6 billion public company. But now Etsy’s laying off 15 percent of its staff, the second round of cuts this year. Its problems seem to stem back to when the company let the mass-produced sell alongside the homespun.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

How towns are hurt when malls run into trouble

Jun 21, 2017
GettyImages-659529378.jpg
Marielle Segarra

After more than 20 years, Jim Quigley left his job at a Wall Street investment firm for a smaller market. He got elected town supervisor in Ulster, New York, about 100 miles north of Manhattan. Population: 12,251.  

“My family's been in this community since 1849,” Quigley said.

These days, Quigley is working 60-hour weeks, trying to keep the town’s budget in the black. He’s been preparing for a drop in tax dollars from Ulster’s largest taxpayer, the Hudson Valley Mall.

Arnold%20Donald%20Antarctica.JPG
Kai Ryssdal

The calendar says today is the first day of summer, so we're going to take a look at the business of vacations. Specifically, a vacation tens of millions of Americans take every year: cruises.

Carnival Corp. is one of the biggest travel and leisure companies in the world, encompassing not just Carnival lines but also Princess and Holland America, among others.

Today is the deadline for health insurance companies to decide if they're going to be in or out of the health care exchanges in 2018. Several of the big insurers, like Anthem and Humana, are bailing on the exchanges in many markets, limiting or eliminating options for patients using Obamacare. But while some companies are jumping ship, others are jumping in — like New York startup Oscar, and Centene, based in St. Louis. Why do these companies see this moment as an opportunity when many others are fleeing?

Some economists think technology might be slowing inflation

Jun 21, 2017

Should inflation be added to the list of things disrupted by tech? For years, we’ve accepted the integrity of the idea of the Phillips curve: that as unemployment declines, wages rise and companies pass along those increased labor costs in the form of price hikes on goods and services. Inflation. But as unemployment has declined in this economic cycle, we’re seeing very little inflation. Is that because of the influence of technology?

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

rsz_arnold_donald_carnival-24.jpg
Kai Ryssdal

It's officially summer, as you may have heard, so this week’s Corner Office is all about the business of vacations. Cruises, actually, under the umbrella of Carnival Corp. Carnival is one of the biggest travel and leisure companies in the world. Its brands include Carnival, of course, but also Princess and Holland America. This week, Kai talks with Arnold Donald, who’s been president and CEO of Carnival since 2013.

 

Here's how Uber's many scandals came to a head

Jun 21, 2017
GettyImages-696041456.jpg
Marketplace

Time magazine's latest cover shows a familiar view, at least for the 40 million or so people who use Uber regularly: It's a bunch of tiny animated cars roving around a map on your phone, but they're all careening toward Uber's headquarters and ending in a fiery wreck.

06/21/2017: The future of Uber

Jun 21, 2017

Uber has just undergone a shareholder revolt. Investors have ousted CEO Travis Kalanick following investigations that found widespread abuse in the company's workplace. Adam Lashinsky, an executive editor at Fortune who's also authored a book on Uber, joined us to talk about whether Uber has what it takes to turn itself around, and where Kalanick fits into the future of the company. Afterwards, we'll look at Ford's decision to move production of its next-generation Focus model to China, and then talk about the market for selling Obamacare policies. 

Ford moving compact car production to China

Jun 21, 2017
fordfocus.jpg
Adam Allington

Several months after scrapping plans to shift production of the next-generation Ford Focus to Mexico, the company now says it will built the compact car in China instead.

Ford was slammed by President Trump repeatedly over the proposed Mexico move and the administration raised the possibly of punitive tariffs for carmakers who located south of the border.

Uber CEO's resignation doesn't change his voting power

Jun 21, 2017
travis_0.jpg
Marketplace staff

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick may have been forced to resign the top spot at the company, but don’t count him out just yet.

Word came out on Tuesday night that investors had ousted him, a move following investigations into the company’s culture and allegations of sexual harassment. Uber has already fired 20 employees amid these probes. Kalanick remains on the board of directors at the company. 

Why are subprime auto loans still a thing?

Jun 21, 2017
GettyImages-81247255.jpg
Jana Kasperkevic

What are subprime auto loans? 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says Republicans will release a discussion draft of their version of the health care bill on Thursday, with a vote likely next week.

Private health care talks have been underway in the Senate for weeks. McConnell tapped a 13-member working group last month to hash out senators' differences over the House-passed American Health Care Act. McConnell's office has since taken the lead drafting the Senate version of the party's long-promised legislation to dismantle the Affordable Care Act.

It's "Technology Week" at the White House. So, naturally, President Trump is heading to farm country today. If that seems incongruous, you may not know there's a lot of high-tech stuff going on in the growing field of "precision agriculture.” Farmers are using all sorts of technology to determine the most efficient growing practices, which agriculture specialists will discuss with Trump during his Iowa trip.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

06/21/2017: Crowdsourcing our brains

Jun 21, 2017
mannequin.jpg
Marketplace

President Trump has called for a "sweeping transformation of the federal government's technology," but is that achievable? Matt Cutts of the U.S. Digital Service — which works on modernizing tech, one crisis at a time — joined us to talk about what his team does and whether progress is possible. Afterwards, we'll look at Amazon's latest attempt at world domination: the launch of a clothes shopping service that will let you order clothes and return them for free if you don't like them.

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigns under investor pressure

Jun 21, 2017
travisuber.jpg
Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) — Travis Kalanick, the combative and troubled CEO of ride-hailing giant Uber, has resigned under pressure from investors at a pivotal time for the company.

Uber's board confirmed the move early Wednesday, saying in a statement that Kalanick is taking time to heal from the death of his mother in a boating accident "while giving the company room to fully embrace this new chapter in Uber's history.'' He will remain on the Uber Technologies Inc. board.

06/21/2017: Uber investors oust CEO Travis Kalanick

Jun 21, 2017
traviskalanick.jpg
Marketplace

A group of investors have pushed out Uber's founder and CEO following a series of controversies, including allegations of sexual harassment. On today's show, we'll take a look about what's in store for the ride-sharing company's future and how much power Kalanick still has left within the company. Plus: A look at how technology is helping farmers determine the most efficient growing practices. 

Today  is the deadline for insurers to submit plans for selling policies on the Obamacare exchanges in 2018. The political climate has destabilized the market for many insurers, and 44 counties have already decided to pull out entirely, leaving thousands potentially without coverage.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

The US shares the blame for a massacre in Mexico

Jun 20, 2017

The "war on drugs" has been part of American policy for so long that it's sometimes difficult to remember that the DEA wages that war every day, on both sides of the border with Mexico.

But it's incredibly difficult to counter the power cartels can hold over the Mexican government, and when things wrong, there are deadly reprecussions. 

Why Americans should be taking more vacations

Jun 20, 2017
GettyImages-112805096.jpg
Kai Ryssdal and Emily Henderson

About half of workers in the U.S. didn't use all of their vacation days last year. 2016 saw 662 million available days left on the table. Travel and Leisure magazine wants to change that with a special issue that features travel deals and tips to get more Americans to take some time off.

Why do big companies support a carbon tax?

Jun 20, 2017

A group called the Climate Leadership Council put out a plan for a carbon tax earlier this year, and it’s made up not just of environmentalist types, though there are some of those, but also conservative Republicans and business leaders. Its founding members include multinational corporations, including fossil fuel and auto companies like Exxon Mobil, BP and GM.

We often hear that healthcare accounts for a staggering one-sixth of the U.S. economy. According to the most recent data from the Center for Medicaid & Medicare services, we spend $3.2 trillion dollars a year on healthcare.  That is, indeed, about a sixth of our GDP.  Here’s what we spend it on, and why it’s so much. 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

How do you do business without high-speed internet?

Jun 20, 2017
ruralbroadband.jpg
Caitlin Esch

Driving around rural Erie County, Pennsylvania, what you notice — aside from rolling hills, old farm houses, and the occasional small town — are the movie rental stores. There are a lot of them.

Jamie Buie is the manager of Family Video in Erie City. As she rang up a customer with a towering stack of DVDs, she said her decision to take a job here five years ago came down to internet access.

21: Tax cuts and partisan brain candy

Jun 20, 2017
GettyImages-73574557.jpg
Kai Ryssdal and Molly Wood

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed a series of big tax cuts back in 2012, pledging to put money back in the hands of individuals and grow the economy. It became known as an experiment in "trickle-down," or supply-side economics.

Why you should listen to Leonard Cohen music when you eat toffee

Jun 20, 2017
GettyImages-496593578_0.jpg
Kai Ryssdal and Bridget Bodnar

Can a restaurant actually make you think its food tastes better because of the place settings and ambiance? Can a chocolate company make you think its candy bars are sweeter because they've changed shape? 

Pages