Economy & Business

Business news

Lane Wallace

In a big upset for federal prosecutors, an appeals court in New York  on Monday threw out an earlier decision against Bank of America and its mortgage lending unit Countrywide.

The Department of Justice had accused Bank of America and Countrywide of fraud, saying Countrywide misrepresented mortgage loans sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2007 and 2008.

New home sales lag overall market

19 hours ago
Mitchell Hartman

The U.S. Commerce Department reports new home sales for April on Tuesday. A small increase is expected from the 511,000 annual rate reported for March.

Housing been one of the bright spots in the economic recovery, with existing home sales strong, home prices rising, and mortgage rates historically low.

Marketplace Tech for Tuesday, May 24, 2016

19 hours ago

On today's show, we'll check in to see how restructuring efforts at Hewlett Packard and IBM have affected each company; interview author Thomas Davenport about his new book "Only Humans Need Apply," which argues that the future of business success will require machine-human collaboration; and meet the man behind Google Doodle, Ryan Germick. 

Casino workers now training to build submarines

19 hours ago
Howard Jones

The Navy recently picked General Dynamics Electric Boat shipyard in Connecticut to build 12 new submarines, in what could be a $100 billion project. It should secure the future of the yard for the next couple of decades, but in the meantime, hiring thousands of workers presents a few challenges in an economy where manufacturing was on the decline.

After hours at a technical high school in Groton, a small class of men and women gathered around instructor Robert Morelli to prepare for a hands-on measuring test.


On today's show, we'll talk about a thrown-out fraud case against Bank of America; look at Greece's financial situation; and interview author Paul Tough about his new book "Helping Children Succeed: What Works and Why." 

Amy Scott

One of the buzzwords in education these days is "grit."

Research suggests that qualities like perseverance, conscientiousness and self-control are as crucial as "academic" skills for excelling in the classroom.

Writer Paul Tough has been looking at the latest research on how those so-called noncognitive skills are developed in young children — starting in infancy — and why kids growing up in poverty or in stressful environments are often at a disadvantage.

He joined our Morning Report show to talk about his new book, "Helping Children Succeed: What Works and Why."

Khaled Ali Hassanin opens his silver minivan and pulls into Cairo's busy traffic. He is a freelance driver. He used to ferry foreign tourists all around Egypt as a staff member of a tour company. It was a great job.

"There was so much work. I never worried about money. If I spent one [Egyptian] pound, I'd get two back. We had more work than we could handle," he says.

A federal appeals court Monday ruled in favor of Bank of America, reversing a lower court ruling. The decision is a blow to the federal government, which had won the case at trial. Bank of America had been ordered to pay a $1.27 billion penalty for alleged violations by its Countrywide unit.

The case got attention in 2012 because it appeared to pull back the curtain on some of the widespread wrongdoing in the mortgage industry that led to the worst financial crisis in generations.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Many of the department stores that once anchored bustling shopping malls continue to close. Macy's will shutter 36 additional stores this year; 78 Kmart and Sears locations will also close. What to do with that vast, vacant space?

There is no traffic, and no problem finding parking at Owings Mills Mall in Maryland. The 5,000 or so parking spaces are all vacant. A J.C. Penney closed last month and a Macy's closed last year.

When it opened in 1986, it was anchored by a Saks Fifth Avenue and catered to well-to-do Baltimore suburbanites.

Hooray! It's that time of election season again, when (depending on whom you support) every single poll is cause for either panic or triumphantly punching the air.

Election Day, by the way, is Nov. 8. That's almost half a year more of hyperventilation over polls.

That sounds exhausting.

Pharmaceutical giant Bayer has launched a $62 billion bid for seed seller Monsanto in what some news reports say would be the largest-ever German takeover of a foreign company.

Bayer's all-cash offer is 37 percent higher than Monsanto's stock price before news broke about the possible deal.

"This transaction represents a compelling opportunity for Monsanto's shareholders," Bayer CEO Werner Baumann told reporters on a conference call Monday.

The presidential effect on foreign business deals

May 23, 2016
Sabri Ben-Achour

Boeing has made a deal to sell aircraft to VietJet.  GE Wind will partner with the Vietnamese government to develop windpower.  Pratt & Whitney will sell advanced engines to Vietnam. 

All these deals are announced just as President Obama is in Hanoi to put an end to a decades long arms embargo and highlight improving ties with the former adversary.