National/International

(Markets Edition) Donald Trump's pick to replace Fed Chair Janet Yellen with Jerome Powell will face confirmation hearings today. On today's show, we'll take a look at what his attitude toward monetary policy might be, and how similar he is to his predecessor. Afterwards, we'll chat with Julia Coronado from MacroPolicy Perspectives about who on the Senate might split off from the Republican party when it comes to the planned tax overhaul, and then we''ll examine why housing prices are rising much faster than wages and consumer prices.

(U.S. Edition) Trump's choice to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has instituted a freeze on hiring and new rulemaking at the agency, despite questions over whether he's the rightful successor. The CFPB is the brainchild of Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who stopped by to talk us about the controversy and the effectiveness of the agency. Afterwards, we'll speak to author Kate Moore about her book "Radium Girls," which looks at the terrible fates of women who worked at the U.S. Radium Corp. factory in New Jersey starting in 1917.

Despite a challenge in federal court to his legal authority, President Trump's choice to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has now instituted a freeze on hiring and new rulemaking at the watchdog agency.

Rising home prices are a mixed bag, economically speaking. The trend is good for homeowners, who have been building a lot of home equity in recent years as prices surpassed pre-Recession levels in many top real estate markets. But rising prices are also creating an affordability crisis for renters who find themselves priced out of hot housing markets where well-paying jobs are plentiful.

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Japan's Softbank is racing ahead in its bid to buy a stake in Uber, but in Europe, regulators are hauling the company over the coals for its massive data breach.  Afterwards, the global economy is now growing at its fastest pace since 2010, according to a new report from the OECD, a group of the world's 35 largest economies. Then, British banks have just been put through their paces in a series of stress tests and it turns out they passed with flying colors. 

Imagining the everyday economy of the moon

Nov 28, 2017

A lot of research went into Andy Weir's book "The Martian," about an American astronaut who gets stranded on Mars alone in the year 2035. He studied orbital mechanics, astronomy, and the history of spaceflight to write something as realistic as possible. The book was later made into a movie staring Matt Damon.

While the drama over at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is ongoing, the big story in Washington right now is still taxes. Members of Congress are back from their holiday break, and Republicans are doing their best to tweak and prod the tax plan to garner enough votes to get it through the Senate. That means perks going in for individual members, which have to be offset somewhere else to save money in the final package. A new report from the Congressional Budget Office on the decision to repeal the Obamacare mandate shows it could reduce benefits for low-income families. 

How much could a new leader reshape the CFPB?

Nov 27, 2017

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, created in the wake of the financial crisis, is locked in a leadership struggle after its first director stepped down last week. President Donald Trump named an interim director, while a deputy director at the CFPB has sued in federal court, arguing that role is hers.

Becoming a food and wine "superhero"

Nov 27, 2017

My Economy tells the story of the new economic normal through the eyes of people trying to make it, because we know the only numbers that really matter are the ones in your economy.

Today’s installment is from Robert Engel, now sous chef at Great Camp Sagamore in upstate New York:

My name is Robert Engel.

11/27/2017: Trumping consumer protection

Nov 27, 2017

Mick Mulvaney, appointed leader of the the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau by the president, says you're naive if you thought the government agency would stay the same under the Trump administration. But many are worried that Mulvaney will hollow out the bureau, which gives $12 billion in refunds to 30 million Americans. And we give you the Congressional Budget Office’s evaluation of another Trump-era revamp, the tax reform bill.

Running cars on something other than gas stands to greatly reduce the world's need for oil. That has energy company Shell moving into the electric vehicle charging business. On top of last month’s purchase of major European electric vehicle charging network NewMotion, it's got a new partnership to put high speed EV chargers in dozens of Shell stations across Europe.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

When Hurricane Irma made landfall in Southwest Florida on Sept. 10, the state’s citrus groves were hit especially hard. And they were already vulnerable, after more than a decade of struggle against a devastating crop disease. Hurricane Irma’s severe winds, rain and flooding left extensive damage in the groves, which growers say will take years to recover.

(Markets Edition) President Trump and the outgoing director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau have each chosen different leaders to oversee the watchdog agency. And now Leandra English, the current head's pick, is turning the matter to federal court by filing a lawsuit to stop Trump's appointment. Her lawyer, Deepak Gupta, joined us to give more details about the fight.

Republicans in general, and the president in particular, don't like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau set up after the last financial crisis. The president has said the CFPB is a failed agency which hurts consumers by hurting financial companies. Supporters point out it's the only federal agency solely focused on keeping banks, credit card companies and other financial firms from hurting consumers.

The Children’s Health Insurance Program or CHIP provides health insurance to nearly 9 million low income-children across the country. In September, it technically ran out of money ... after Congress failed to reauthorize funding. Some states — which operate CHIP programs themselves — have been subsisting on leftover funds for months, but time is running out before that money dries up too, leaving potentially millions of children without insurance. 

Click the above audio player to hear the full story.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government official President Donald Trump wants to pass over as acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with his own budget chief is asking a federal court to block the president’s appointment.

Leandra English, who was elevated to the position of interim director of the CFPB by its outgoing director, filed a lawsuit Sunday night in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. She asks for a declaratory judgment and a temporary restraining order to block White House budget director Mick Mulvaney from taking over the bureau.

(U.S. Edition) There's a leadership tussle happening right now at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the watchdog agency created after the financial crisis. Outgoing Director Richard Cordray named longtime staffer Leandra English as his replacement, but President Trump has tried to appoint budget director Mick Mulvaney. On today's show, we'll recap the ongoing controversy. Afterwards, we'll discuss a leadership shakeup that's happened in another industry: John L. Flannery took the reins of General Electric this summer.

11/27/2017: Tourists trapped by Bali volcano

Nov 27, 2017

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Tourists are trapped on the Indonesian island of Bali as its Mount Agung volcano is in imminent danger of a full-scale eruption. Afterwards, EU officials are meeting today to decide whether glyphosate — the main ingredient of the herbicide Round Up — should be banned in Europe. Then, should Japan change its attitudes toward foreigners in order to help the economy?

Americans spend 293 hours driving each year, according to AAA. That’s more than 12 days worth of data on where we go, what we listen to, and where we stop for lunch. And make no mistake, our cars are “watching” us. John Ellis, a former global technologist with Ford and author of a new book called “The Zero Dollar Car,” imagines that we’ll be able to trade in that data for cars one day. Marketplace Tech host Molly Wood talked with Ellis about the value of car data.

Black Friday is kicking off a race to the stores. For Congress, it's the last day of rest before another kind of frenzy: The race to get the GOP tax bill passed. We'll talk about on today's Weekly Wrap with Nela Richardson, chief economist at Redfin.

Black Friday is an American phenomenon that increasingly, belongs to the world. Globalization and technology have made it much easier for folks overseas to buy sought-after American goods. This cross-border commerce has been around for decades but today, it's getting a big boost.

The mysterious jump in Obamacare enrollment

Nov 24, 2017

We're half-way through the Obamacare open enrollment period and we've got a bit of a health care mystery on our hands. Earlier this week, federal health officials reported nearly 800-thousand consumers selected plans on healthcare.gov - the federal website where people shop for plans under the Affordable Care Act. It's the third consecutive week enrollment has outpaced last year's numbers with more than 2 million picking plans so far. What’s causing the spike?

As many Americans try to make the most of retailers offering deals on one of the busiest shopping days of the year, the 10,000 or so residents of Rockport, Texas, are still dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Many are still living in hotel rooms. Some have had to relocate to rental properties miles away. The storm and its aftermath have changed the local economy and  put some holiday expectations on hold.

The hidden history of comic book shops

Nov 24, 2017

Looking for a holiday gift for your favorite comic nerd? Well, the first ever Superman comic, "Action Comics" No. 1 is set to be auctioned next month.

The expected price? $1.2 million.

That's enough to turn heads, but overall comic sales are down about 20 percent from this time last year. It's the latest in the saga of a fantastical industry that has seen its share of battles, both on the page and in its industry.

When the Big Apple nearly became the Big Orange

Nov 24, 2017

In her new book, "The Secret Lives of Color," Kassia St. Clair chronicles the origin stories of a rainbow of colors, dyes and shades. In this occasional series, we'll highlight some of the hues featured in her book and the unusual stories behind them. Today, she tells the story of orange, at one time a nameless color that soon came to signify a powerful European family.

11/24/2017: Let's do the numbers on Black Friday

Nov 24, 2017

We've got a whole bunch of stories about America's biggest shopping holiday: From communities recovering after a long storm season, to shoppers in Korea trying to get in on the action. Then we talk with PayPal President Dan Schulman to get his perspective on this year's shopping season and the continuing rise of mobile payments. Plus: While we're all rushing around to stores, Congress is enjoying one more day of rest before a frenzy of their own: Passing the tax bill before the end of the year.

PayPal's president says this Cyber Monday is all about mobile

Nov 24, 2017

According to a new study by PayPal, people will spend an estimated $630 billion during the holiday shopping season. Marketplace host Molly Wood sat down with PayPal President Dan Schulman to discuss Cyber Monday shopping and the rise of mobile payments this shopping season. Below is an edited transcript of their conversation.

Molly started off by asking about how retailers are preparing for the the big weekend.

At MAR-MAC INC. in the small town of McBee, South Carolina, robotic arms coil 335 feet of steel wire into a roll four-and-a-half inches in diameter.  It is then dropped onto a conveyor belt. Where workers package it into boxes.

This rebar tie wire is the core of MAR-MAC owner John Martin’s business.   

“Anytime you build a bridge, a dam,” he said, “you may very well be using our rebar tie wire.”  

(Markets Edition) Teens these days are taking longer to get driver's licenses, jobs and go on dates, according to a recent study. We'll look at some of the reasons for rising youth unemployment and the potential consequences. Afterwards, we'll look at why German and Italian workers at Amazon are going on strike against the company, and then discuss the political corruption happening in Guatemala, which may affect the country's abilities to obtain loans

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