Business

Business
3:04 am
Fri November 2, 2012

Chrysler Hit Sales Milestone In October

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 9:43 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Chrysler sales.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: Chrysler is again in the news. Today it's not for political reasons, but because the Detroit automaker is selling cars, a lot of them. Chrysler had it best October sales in five years. And Automotive magazine has named Chrysler's CEO its man of the year.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's Sonari Glinton reports.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: When auto industry people talk about Chrysler's CEO Sergio Marchionne, they tend to gush.

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U.S.
3:35 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Manhattan Businesses Struggle Until Power Returns

Paul Nicaj, who owns Battery Gardens Restaurant on the southern tip of Manhattan, says Superstorm Sandy will cost him a few hundred thousand dollars, including income from two weddings that may have to be cancelled this weekend.
Ailsa Chang NPR

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 11:01 am

Lower Manhattan continues to slog through another day without electricity, and it's taking a toll on businesses that have been shuttered since the storm hit. No electricity means no lights, no credit card machines, no heating and no refrigerators to keep food fresh, so local shops and restaurants are waiting desperately for the power to turn back on.

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The Salt
1:09 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Sandy's Damage Under The Sea, Through The Eyes Of Oyster Farmers

What they pull up is discouraging. Normally, 30 seconds under water would bring up a cage full of mostly healthy oysters. This time, Jimmy Bloom pulls up a cage that is barely one-third full. And it's haul is a mix of broken, chipped, meatless oysters.
Jeff Cohen for NPR

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy wrapped up a post Hurricane Sandy news briefing earlier this week by talking about sewage discharges into Long Island Sound. "Suffice to say in the immediate time being, no one should eat the clams or oysters," he said.

That's right. Because of water quality issues, the state put a temporary stop to oyster farming, but that's usually a short-term thing and it happens fairly regularly after a big storm.

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The Two-Way
8:39 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Consumer Confidence Hits Highest Point In Nearly Five Years

"Black Friday" 2011 in Manhattan. Will consumers come out in force this holiday season? Their confidence was high in October.
Michael Nagle Getty Images

By at least one measure, in October consumers were the most confident they've been since February 2008, the private Conference Board reports.

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The Two-Way
6:52 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Some Mixed Signals From Latest Jobs Numbers

Job seekers were on line at a career fair in Manhattan back in August.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 7:02 am

Three closely watched employment indicators are out this morning:

-- Unemployment Benefits. There were 363,000 first-time claims for jobless benefits last week, down from 372,000 the week before, the Employment and Training Administration says. So, as they have all year, claims remain in a range between 350,000 and 400,000.

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Business
3:10 am
Thu November 1, 2012

GM Quarterly Earnings Exceed Expectations

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:41 am

Even facing economic headwinds in Europe and South America, GM's quarterly earnings came in well above analysts' estimates, and its stock soared.

Business
3:06 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Help Wanted In Switzerland: Hunting Tax Cheats

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:41 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And while we're on the subject of tax evasion, our last word in business today is: Help wanted.

Switzerland is looking for more staff to handle a flood of new requests from other countries that are looking for tax cheats.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Business
3:06 am
Thu November 1, 2012

The Complicated Economic Impact Of Sandy

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:41 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Sandy is likely to go down as one of the costliest storms in U.S. history. The initial estimates of the losses are anywhere from $20 billion to $50 billion. But as NPR's Jim Zarroli reports, the impact on the economy is more complicated than it may appear. Some companies will even make money.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: Economist Greg Daco has been tallying the potential costs of Hurricane Sandy and he says there's no question it's going to hurt the economy more than it will help it.

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Business
3:06 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Business News

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 4:41 am

Japanese TV maker Sharp on Thursday doubled its expected net loss for the year to more than $5 billion. The company also raised concerns about its ability to survive on its own. The news comes a day after another Japanese tech giant, Panasonic, forecast a nearly $10 billion loss for the year.

Planet Money
3:06 am
Thu November 1, 2012

The Robots Haven't Taken Over The Stock Market (Yet)

Sandbags protect an entrance of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, Oct. 29, 2012.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 11:04 am

Note: This story was originally published on Oct. 30. It was updated on Nov. 1 to include a radio version of the story.

The stock market, according to a popular narrative, is now just computers making superfast trades with other computers. Those pictures of traders getting emotional on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange are an anachronism. The real action flashes through fiber-optic cables headed for servers in places like Kansas City. It's algorithms all the way down.

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The Two-Way
5:57 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Coal Mine Inspection Sweep Targets Cause Of Black Lung

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 3:59 am

Federal regulators have announced the results of a September inspection blitz targeting 13 coal mines in seven states "previously cited for violations regarding respirable dust sampling ... inadequate dust control ... and hazard complaints" involving excessive coal dust.

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Movies
3:27 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Lucasfilm Deal Represents Shift In Hollywood

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 4:53 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

A surprise announcement yesterday from the Walt Disney Company. The studio that gave us "Cinderella"...

(SOUNDBITE OF ANIMATED MOVIE, "CINDERELLA")

CINDERELLA: Oh, my goodness. It's midnight.

CORNISH: Ariel...

([SOUNDBITE OF ANIMATED MOVIE, "THE LITTLE MERMAID"])

ARIEL: (Singing) You want thingamabobs? I got 20.

CORNISH: And "Snow White"...

([SOUNDBITE OF ANIMATED MOVIE, "SNOW WHITE"])

SNOW WHITE: I'm sure I'll get along somehow.

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It's All Politics
1:46 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Auto Legend Iacocca Backs Romney In Ohio Car Wars

Mitt Romney campaigns Monday in Avon Lake, Ohio.
Tony Dejak AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 3:06 pm

As the presidential race zeroes in on Ohio, and the auto industry gets renewed focus in the all-important swing state, Mitt Romney's campaign is touting the backing of former Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca and the company's former president, Hal Sperlich.

"In our opinion, Mitt Romney is the leader we need to help turn our economy around and ensure that the American auto industry is once again a dominant force in the world," Iacocca and Sperlich write on Romney's website.

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Planet Money
7:10 am
Wed October 31, 2012

America's Most Expensive Storms

A firefighter surveys the smoldering ruins of a house in the Breezy Point section of New York.
Mark Lennihan AP

While we're on the subject of devastating storms, consider a report published last year by the National Hurricane Center. The title alone makes it worth a look:

THE DEADLIEST, COSTLIEST, AND MOST INTENSE UNITED STATES TROPICAL CYCLONES FROM 1851 TO 2010 (AND OTHER FREQUENTLY REQUESTED HURRICANE FACTS)

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Business
3:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Halloween Spending On The Rise

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 6:52 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now let's report on a different kind of horror. Tonight, of course, is Halloween, and Americans are expected to spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $8 billion on decorations candy, costumes and other stuff.

From Seattle, NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports on the business behind this ghoulish night.

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Business
3:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Walt Disney Co. To Buy Lucasfilm

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 2:43 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Oh my gosh. You create the social equivalent of nuclear fusion when you combine the people who are obsessed with Star Wars and the people obsessed with Disney. The Walt Disney Company is apparently willing to take that risk. In a move that surprised industry observers, Disney announced, yesterday, it is buying Lucasfilm, the studio founded by George Lucas and home to the Star Wars franchise. NPR's Mandalit del Barco reports there are already plans for a new "Star Wars" movie.

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Business
3:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

New York Markets Set To Reopen After Sandy

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 6:52 am

The New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ are both set to reopen Tuesday. The markets were closed Monday and Tuesday as Hurricane Sandy pounded the East Coast, flooding New York's financial district.

Business
3:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Businesses Try To Get By During Hockey Lockout

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 6:52 am

The National Hockey League has now canceled all games through the end of November, as team owners lock out players in a labor dispute. In the meantime, there are many businesses and workers who count on hockey games to help make ends meet. But they are now trying to make due without.

Business
3:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Air Travel Still Feeling The Effects Of Sandy

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 6:52 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Airlines canceled more than 17,000 flights before, during, and after the storm. New York's JFK and Newark Airport in New Jersey re-opened this morning, with limited service. For other airports, it may be days before their first flights take-off. All told, Sandy is expected to cost the domestic airline industry $100 million - money it can't really afford to lose.

Still, as NPR's Wade Goodwyn reports, the news hasn't been all bad.

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The Two-Way
2:29 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

The Force Is Strong With This One: Disney Buys Lucasfilm For $4B

In this handout image provided by Disney, Star Wars creator George Lucas has a playful lightsaber duel with Jedi Mickey Mouse at Disney's Hollywood Studios theme park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Aug. 14, 2010. Disney announced Tuesday that it was buying Lucasfilm Ltd. for $4.05 billion.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 4:36 am

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The Two-Way
1:55 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Keeping Sandy's Economic Impact In Perspective

A truck drives through a flooded street caused by Hurricane Sandy in New York City's Financial District on Tuesday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 8:32 am

When Superstorm Sandy slammed into the East Coast on Monday, the fragile U.S. economy was just sitting there, stuck in a sluggish-growth mode.

Now, as the massive cleanup begins, business owners, workers and investors are wondering what impact the megastorm ultimately will have on their wallets. Did Sandy weigh down economic activity enough to drown the recovery? Or will the rebuilding efforts boost growth over the longer term?

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The Salt
1:26 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

Oregon State's New Cheese Plant Aims To Break The Rind

Oregon State University food science and technology students mix a batch of havarti cheese in a cheesemaking class.
Lynn Ketchum OSU

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 5:04 pm

It's football season at Oregon State University, and that means tailgating, grilling, and ... cheese?

When we think of Oregon, we don't necessarily think of cheese — maybe a nice Pinot Noir, but not cheese. But this fall, Oregon State University's new cheese plant rolled out its first batch of product: a specialty alpine cheese (like Swiss, Comte or Gruyere) dubbed by the students "Beaver Classic." It's a mild cheese, with nutty flavors like caramelized onions.

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Business
11:23 am
Tue October 30, 2012

New York Stock Exchange To Reopen Wednesday

The floor of the New York Stock Exchange was empty of traders Monday, as New York's financial district braced for the onslaught of Hurricane Sandy.
Richard Drew AP

The New York Stock Exchange will reopen for regular trading Wednesday after being shut down for two days because of Hurricane Sandy.

The exchange said in a statement Tuesday that its building and trading floor are fully operational.

Tuesday marks the first time since 1888 that the NYSE remained closed for two consecutive days due to weather. The last time was due to a massive snow storm.

Sections of Manhattan were inundated with water and power was shut off to thousands of people and businesses.

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Your Money
9:39 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Why One Extreme Couponer Gave Up Clipping

Originally published on Mon January 28, 2013 2:55 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And now for our conversation about personal finance. Especially in these lean times, savvy shoppers have been told never to leave the house without their coupons. Those who take it to another level call themselves extreme couponers. These big savers can load shopping carts with hundreds of dollars of merchandise and pay just a fraction of that for it. That's because they spend hours online writing companies and even dumpster diving to get as many coupons as they can.

Here's a clip from TLC's reality show "Extreme Couponing".

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Election 2012
4:27 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Obama Campaign Slams Romney's Jeep Ad

A worker installs carpet into a Jeep Liberty at the Toledo Assembly Complex in Toledo, Ohio, in 2011.
J.D. Pooley Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 5:51 pm

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Business
3:33 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Travel At A Near Standstill Along The East Coast

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 11:20 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The transportation industry is also taking a hard hit. Travel is at a virtual standstill along the East Coast because of Sandy. Up to 15,000 flights have been canceled. Amtrak service in the Northeast is shut down again today. And crews are just beginning to assess the extensive cleanup work needed to clear tracks and roads.

NPR's Tovia Smith reports.

TOVIA SMITH, BYLINE: Travelers across the Northeast have been going nowhere fast. Some who thought they were getting lucky, got half way home before hitting the end of the road.

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Business
3:33 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Random House, Penguin To Merge

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 11:20 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Sandy overshadowed almost everything in yesterday and put the rest of it under water. But even with a massive storm underway the publishing industry could not ignore another big story: the merger of two of the biggest publishing houses in the business. The European conglomerates that own Random House and Penguin reached an agreement to consolidate.

NPR's Lynn Neary reports.

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The Two-Way
3:48 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Penguin, Random House Announce Merger

Bertelsmann and Pearson announced Monday that they were merging their book publishing arms, Random House and Penguin. The new firm will be called Penguin Random House.
Timur Emek dapd

Originally published on Tue October 30, 2012 9:32 am

There's big news in the world of publishing: The two conglomerates that own Random House and Penguin announced Monday that they were merging their book businesses to form a new company.

German media company Bertelsmann, the owner of Random House, will own 53 percent of the new firm, Penguin Random House; Pearson, which owns Penguin, will control the rest. The merger, subject to regulatory approval, is scheduled to be completed in the second half of 2013.

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Books News & Features
3:13 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Random House, Penguin Publishing Houses To Merge

Executives of the publishing giants Bertelsmann and Pearson announced on Monday that they will pursue a merger of their publishing houses, Random House and Penguin. The united publishing companies are set to become a large and influential force in publishing.

The Two-Way
2:42 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy's Economic Impact Likely To Be Immense

Waves crash over a road as Hurricane Sandy comes up the coast Monday in Winthrop, Mass. Economists are predicting the storm will cost tens of billions of dollars.
Darren McCollester Getty Images

Originally published on Mon October 29, 2012 3:12 pm

Economists will need many days — maybe weeks or months — to assess the financial harm being done by Hurricane Sandy. But whatever the final figure, it will be huge, well into the tens of billions of dollars.

More than 60 million Americans are feeling the impact of the weather monster slamming New York, New Jersey, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Virginia, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and many other states. The howling mix of wind, rain and snow is causing massive direct losses, i.e., the destruction of private homes, stores, boats and cars.

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