Economy & Business

Business news

Do We Have The Wrong Idea About Charity?

May 17, 2013

Part 3 of the TED Radio Hour episode Giving It Away.

About Dan Pallotta's TEDTalk

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

With supplies high and prices at historic lows, there's debate whether companies should be allowed to export the gas overseas for a higher price. Many energy companies have applied for government approval to ship liquefied natural gas worldwide. So far, only one company has gotten a license to do that in the past 30 years..

The Last Word In Business

May 17, 2013

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's go from small claims to false claims. Our last word in business is all about faking it and not making it to work.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "SEINFELD")

JASON ALEXANDER: (as George) Shouldn't you be at work by now?

WAYNE KNIGHT: (as Newman) Work? It's raining.

ALEXANDER: (as George) So?

KNIGHT: (as Newman) So I called in sick. I don't work in the rain.

ALEXANDER: (as George) You don't work in the rain? You're a mailman. Neither rain nor sleet nor - it's the first one.

Business News

May 17, 2013

A 79 percent drop in earnings — That's what the computer maker reported to investors Thursday. The reason, analysts say, it's harder to sell PCs these days with the growing popularity of smartphones and tablets

On Thursday, President Obama named Daniel Werfel, 42, acting IRS commissioner. The announcement comes a day after the resignation of Steven Miller, who got caught up in the controversy over the IRS targeting Tea Party groups.

Google Lays Out Its Future For Everyone

May 17, 2013

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep. This week in San Francisco, Google held its annual developers conference. The Internet search giant debuted updates for just about everything from Google+ to Maps, and gave talks on gadgets like Google Glass. And, as NPR's Steve Henn reports, Google laid out its vision for its future, as well as our future.

Sales of guns and ammunition rose after President Obama took office in 2008, and they went through the roof starting late last year, when a school shooting led to a push for new gun control measures. That's led to a prolonged ammunition shortage, even with manufacturers running at full capacity.

Two seemingly common-sense, bipartisan food reforms have gotten mugged on Capitol Hill in recent days. If you're a loyal reader of The Salt, you've heard of them.

American gourmets and lovers of Italian food products, your days as food smugglers are over.

No more stuffing your suitcases with delicacies bought in Italy, hoping the sniffer dogs at JFK or other American airports won't detect the banned-in-the-USA foodstuffs inside your luggage.

In the U.S., they're called cured meats, the French say charcuterie and in Italy, the word for cured-pork products is salumi.

Four years ago, 21 men with intellectual disabilities were emancipated from a bright blue, century-old schoolhouse in Atalissa, Iowa. They ranged in age from their 40s to their 60s, and for most of their adult lives they had worked for next to nothing and lived in dangerously unsanitary conditions.

Earlier this month, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission won a massive judgment against the turkey-processing company at which the men worked. The civil suit involved severe physical and emotional abuse of men with intellectual disabilities.

Hundreds of underground passageways wind like a maze beneath the Egypt-Gaza border, providing a way for Gazans to maneuver around the 2007 Israeli-led economic blockade that took effect after Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip.

And while subterranean tunnels may seem like something out of a thrilling spy movie, the reality and practicality of these channels is somehow not surprising.

After a long bumpy ride that started five years ago, the domestic airline industry seems to be pulling up and smoothing out.

The number of passengers planning to fly this summer will tick up 1 percent from 2012, climbing back to the highest level since 2008, an industry group said Thursday.

The airlines' profit outlook is also brighter, as jet fuel prices have settled down a bit. Passenger complaints are quieting down, too.

This week, Google, already a leader in mapping, created more space between itself and its competitors by more deeply mining the data users provide the company when using its various services.

At the Google developers' conference in San Francisco on Wednesday, Daniel Graf, director of Google Maps, crowed about the company's mapping app for the iPhone — and couldn't quite stop himself from taking a dig at Apple.

"People called it sleek, simple, beautiful, and let's not forget, accurate," he said.

A couple generations ago, when older Americans retired they could rely on pension plans to support them. Then, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, many companies switched their retirement plans over to 401(k) accounts. The security of workers' retirement savings suddenly became subject to the vagaries of the stock market.

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