Economy & Business

Business news

The cost of prison is more than just time served

May 19, 2017
Eliza Mills

Robert Shipp was 20 years old when he was sent to prison in 1994. He was convicted of a nonviolent federal drug charge: distribution of and conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine. At the time, conviction meant a mandatory minimum life sentence. Shipp's time was reduced to 30 years in 2015, and he has twice been denied clemency. 

Prom season is here, and it can cost families a pretty penny

May 19, 2017
Lizzie O'Leary and Jana Kasperkevic

It started as a joke, but ended up being a viral promposal.

Jacob Staudenmaier did not have a prom date for his high school prom. And so the teen, who claims resemblance to Ryan Gosling, decided to ask Emma Stone. How? By making a parody video of a "Another Day of Sun," an opening number from the popular movie musical "La La Land."

French indie rockers Phoenix take the Marketplace Quiz

May 19, 2017
Hayley Hershman

No matter who you are, you've probably had a rough day at the office that changed your perspective, or maybe you made an impulse purchase you really, really wish you could take back. This week, Thomas Mars and Laurent Brancowitz from the French band Phoenix took our money-inspired personality questionnaire. Their latest album, "Ti Amo," is out in June. 

Below is an edited transcript of the conversation.

Thomas Mars: Fill in the blank: Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you ____________.

Predictability is bad for Netflix and HBO, but great for network television

May 19, 2017
Lizzie O'Leary, Adrienne Hill and Hayley Hershman

It's upfronts season — that time when television networks showcase their new fall shows for advertisers. Unlike Netflix and HBO, networks have to appeal to the broadest audience possible to get the most advertising dollars. This means feel-good, predictable shows are king. This season there are a lot of reboots and spin-offs of old shows. Marketplace's entertainment correspondent Adriene Hill ran us through the latest line up of fall television. 

PETA takes its fight to other animal entertainment

May 19, 2017
Adrienne Hill

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is calling it quits after a final show this Sunday. When Ringling announced it was shutting down for good, the folks over at the PETA were ecstatic.

“I think it’s an indication of the fact that people now, see using and abusing animals for entertainment is really a throwback to a less enlightened time,” said Lisa Lange, senior vice president of communications at PETA, or the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

Bad! Why the AT&T strike means jobs woes for Trump

May 19, 2017
Jana Kasperkevic

Update: As of 3 pm EDT on Friday, 40,000 AT&T employees have gone on strike. "This is a three-day strike. AT&T workers will go back to work on Monday," a spokesperson told Marketplace. 

In April last year, 40,000 Verizon workers went on strike. Rain or shine, the employees stood outside stores, demanding a better contract. The strike went on for 44 days until an agreement was reached.

Long and short: women, wages and the workforce

May 19, 2017
Lizzie O'Leary and Hayley Hershman

The Los Angeles Times' Natalie Kitroeff and The Atlantic's Gillian White play the long and short game this week, focusing on the Congressional Budget Office's forthcoming report on the health care bill and varying definitions of full employment. Plus, Janet Yellen's commencement speech at Brown University provides context for how far women have come in the workplace, and we discuss the recent reversal of this growth.

Marielle Segarra

In March, the Department of Homeland Security banned laptops from the cabins of flights coming from 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa. Now, the agency is reportedly considering expanding the ban to all international flights.

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As part of President Trump's executive order to review "job-killing regulations," the Environmental Protection Agency last month asked for the public's input on what to streamline or cut. It held a series of open-mic meetings and set up a website that has received more than 28,000 comments, many of which urge the agency not to roll back environmental protections.

Stocks and bonds have echoed the turbulence in Washington this week. We'll chat with FTN Financial's chief economist, Christopher Low, about why markets took a dip and progress on the GOP's health care bill. Afterwards, we'll examine how Trump's trip to Saudi Arabia could lead to the approval of up to $300 billion in arms sales.

Prepared meal kits have grown into a huge market, now worth an estimated $1.5 billion. It’s been driven by startups, like Blue Apron, Purple Carrot, HelloFresh ... the list goes on. But major supermarkets like Kroger and Publix are now muscling in and testing their own versions.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

Peggy Lowe

If there was a world series for crazy ballpark food, the Kansas City Royals would be winning.

Kansas City takes two slots on USA Today’s ranking of “10 craziest ballpark foods for the 2017 MLB season”  – more than any other team.

Trade is center stage as President Trump heads to Saudi Arabia

May 19, 2017

President Trump travels to Saudi Arabia today, the first stop on his first foreign trip as president. A number of American CEOs are also tagging along because, it turns out, there are deals to be done in Saudi Arabia.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.


That whole Panama Papers scandal? The U.S. also needs to take a look at itself

May 19, 2017
David Brancaccio and Janet Nguyen

The West tends to think highly of itself when it comes to dealing with corruption, but it's an image that's been showing cracks, according to the book "Unmasked: Corruption in the West."