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The economic impact of a major new museum

Sep 23, 2016
Nancy Marshall-Genzer

The National Museum of African American History and Culture is a somber and celebratory look at the history of African-Americans in this country.  

It’s expected to draw huge crowds. And they’ll be bringing their wallets.

There’s a pretty straightforward way to analyze a museum’s economic impact. Analysts check out what people spend getting to the museum and how much money they drop there.

Lane Wallace

Hillary Clinton’s campaign is out with a proposal to raise the estate tax for the largest estates. She’d already suggested an expansion of the tax; new details appeared on her website Thursday proposing to up the top rate to 65 percent.

Manufacturing lags overall economy

Sep 23, 2016
Mitchell Hartman

Manufacturing has been a lagging economic sector in the past year. 

The biggest problem for the sector right now, said economist Steve Murphy at Capital Economics, is the strong U.S. dollar. It makes U.S. exports more expensive for overseas companies and consumers, and puts competing suppliers from countries with weaker currencies at an advantage.

Murphy said the strong dollar began taking a toll on U.S. manufacturers in early 2016. And even automobile production can’t be counted on to spark a rebound in manufacturing, he said. 

How a gas shortage got worse with panic buying

Sep 23, 2016
Emily Siner

If you drove past a gas station in Nashville last weekend, you might have seen bags over the pumps or else a really long line of cars. Not even minor celebrities were spared.

At an Exxon station on Monday — which had gas and no lines — Tennessee Titans punter Brett Kern was finally filling up. His car was almost on empty.

North Korea has 28 websites

Sep 22, 2016
Kai Ryssdal

We've been talking today about the big Yahoo hack affecting a half-billion users.

A hack like this would never happen in North Korea — besides the whole "totalitarian state" thing, we learned this week that the country effectively has 28 websites. For perspective, there are 140 million .com and .net sites.

Charlotte's economy is strong but inequality remains

Sep 22, 2016

Charlotte, N.C. is recovering from a second night of protests over the police shooting of 43-year-old Keith Scott, an African-American man  on Tuesday. Tear gas was used, businesses were damaged and Governor Pat McCrory has issued a state of emergency.

During Wednesday night’s protests, Aria Tuscan Grill evacuated all 40 of its guests.

“Because our ventilation started pumping the tear gas into the restaurant,” said Andrew Shook,  the restaurant's assistant general manager.

Lorne Matalon

The Colombian state and the guerrilla movement known as FARC, the Spanish acronym for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia,  are scheduled to sign a peace accord Monday (September 26).   

Yahoo confirms hack of 500 million user accounts

Sep 22, 2016
Marketplace staff

Yahoo confirmed today that the information from at least 500 million user accounts was stolen by a “state-sponsored actor” in late 2014.

Donna Tam

The Italian government is trying to combat criticism over an infertility campaign that protesters said is ignorant of the country’s economic problems, and racist and sexist to boot.

Italy tried to celebrate its first "Fertility Day," today, but was met with criticism over its flyer, the Associated Press reported. The advertisement had four white adults smiling on a beach to illustrate good habits, with a contrasting group of young people, including one black man, smoking to illustrate bad habits.

A possible data breach at Yahoo

Sep 22, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about a possible Yahoo data breach; why Janet Yellen decided not to raise interest rates at the recent Fed meeting; and how Europe's tourism industry is doing amid fears over terrorism. 

Lane Wallace

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Dr. Priscilla Chan, took to Facebook live on Wednesday to announce they’ll put $3 billion into an effort to “cure, prevent or manage” all diseases.

Sam Beard

The long vacation season in Europe is winding down, and in  spite of the continent’s well-known problems — the festering debt crisis, the continuing influx of thousands of refugees and migrants across the Mediterranean, and the growing fear of Islamist terrorism —  European tour operators have had another good year.

Foreign holiday bookings are up more than 5 percent. But not every holiday destination is benefiting; there have been winners and losers.

France – one of the most visited countries  in the world – is one of the losers.

Rich Egger / Harvest Public Media

Sandy Songer of Broken Bow, Oklahoma, has a bit of advice for anyone who wants to watch chainsaw artists in action.

“If you’re going to stay around us very long, you need to put some earplugs in,” she says with a laugh, as chainsaws revved and roared behind her like race cars, drowning out everything else in the background.

From carnival barkers, to Ferris wheels humming, to snorts and moos of livestock shows, late-summer state and county fairs are noisy, chaotic affairs. Add to the din this season: chainsaws buzzing.


Kai Ryssdal

We talked last week about Donald Trump's claim that Fed Chair Janet Yellen and her colleagues are keeping interest rates low as a political favor to President Obama.

Yellen was asked a version of "Is that true?" four different times today.

"The Federal Reserve is not politically compromised," she said, going on to add:

Rounak Maiti

Implementing a mass deportation of undocumented workers would reduce cumulative GDP over 10 years by $4.7 trillion — a similar decline in revenue and employment caused by the Great Recession, according to a new study released today by the Center for American Progress.

A move of that magnitude would erase 5 percent of U.S. labor and have a drastic impact on production rates of every industry, according to the study.

An American migration changes Florida

Sep 21, 2016
Andy Uhler

Puerto Rico is deep in debt, unemployment is at about 12 percent and some, including Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, have taken to calling conditions there a humanitarian crisis. The Puerto Rican Federal Affairs Administration claims that more than 1,000 Puerto Rican families relocate to Florida each month. 

Welcome to Marketplace's debate coverage

Sep 21, 2016

Welcome to Marketplace's coverage of the first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Watch this space for live commentary from Marketplace reporters, editors and host Kai Ryssdal.

On today's show, we'll talk about the Federal Reserve's influence on income inequality in the U.S.; the pay gap between white and African-American workers; and Comcast's move into wireless.

Is Wells Fargo digging itself into a PR hole?

Sep 21, 2016
Lane Wallace

Wells Fargo is neck-deep in a scandal over fraudulent accounts: Over several years, thousands of Wells Fargo employees opened millions of accounts in customers’ names, without their permission. That was a response to a push for branch workers to meet stringent sales goals, signing up each customer for multiple accounts in a move known as cross-selling.

What's behind the growing black-white pay gap

Sep 21, 2016
Nancy Marshall-Genzer

The Economic Policy Institute has released a new study on the growing pay gap between white and African-American workers.

Right now, African-American men make 22 percent less than their white peers. African-American women make 34 percent less.

The study looks at wages from 1979 to 2015. It reaches some surprising conclusions. For example, among African-Americans with a degree:

Comcast to become a wireless carrier in 2017

Sep 21, 2016
Adam Allington

Comcast sells us cable TV, it sells us internet, it will hook you up with a landline if that’s how you roll. But the one thing Comcast doesn’t sell us is wireless. Peter Csathy of Creatv Media said in a cable-cutting world of smartphones and tablets, that is where the growth is.

“Certainly for the millennials, who, as you look around, they’re all looking down at their phones,” he said. “So Comcast realizes this is where it needs to spend more of its energy.”

Donna Tam

News of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt’s impending divorce captured headlines and social media today, likely taking over the water cooler talk everywhere.

You’re probably wasting money on premium gas

Sep 20, 2016
Sarah Menendez

Using premium fuel for cars that only require regular-grade fuel has no added benefit — in fact, it’s a waste of money, according to a study from AAA. The study reported that Americans “wasted more than $2.1 billion dollars in the last year using premium-grade gasoline in vehicles designed to run on regular fuel.”

Tony Gonzalez

In a few ways, the McMillin Court in Nashville, Tenn.  looks like a vintage motel.  It is yellow-and-gray, two stories tall, and in the shape of a horseshoe. All 16 units have their own doors to the outside.

The kicker is the neon sign in blue and yellow. It even touts “no vacancy,” although that’s kind of a joke. Since these are former apartments, there’s no front desk to inquire about a room. Guests like Luke Graham, of London, England, book online.

A note about "Actuality"

Sep 20, 2016

We are fondly wrapping up production of our podcast Actuality, which was a joint venture between Marketplace and Quartz. The idea for a co-produced podcast came from a shared sensibility around covering business and the economy–a natural outgrowth of our admiration for each other’s work. Actuality has been a great chance for us to experiment together in the ever-changing area of on-demand media.

Is the economy ready for an interest rate hike?

Sep 20, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about the likelihood the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates at this week's meeting; FedEx's push to expand its ground shipping business, and the debate over whether you should have your wisdom extracted.

Lane Wallace

John Stumpf, CEO of Wells Fargo, will be in front of the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, where he’s expected to show contrition over what’s been a growing scandal.

Will FedEx deliver earnings?

Sep 20, 2016
Sabri Ben-Achour

Investors will be perusing FedEx’s earnings report when it comes out after the bell Tuesday for signs the delivery company will be delivering more profits, or at least plans for more profits. FedEx stock is up 6 percent year-to-date, which is better than it performed last year (when it was down 14 percent). 

The company is in the midst of a broad-based plan to improve its business, based largely on a simple truth: 

Kai Ryssdal

A quick sidebar to the bombings in New York and New Jersey over the weekend.

A lot New Yorkers got an emergency alert on their phones this morning, telling them to be on the lookout for Amhad Rahami.

The folks at Quartz did some digging, turns out there are three different kinds of alerts transmitted through what's called the Wireless Emergency Alerts system.

Adam Allington

The population of seniors in the U.S. is forecast to nearly double over the next three decades, growing from 48 million to 88 million by 2050.

An aging workforce is typically considered to be a negative for an economy, but the implications might not be as scary as we’re led to believe.

The U.S. population is getting older, on average, but compared to our main economic partners in Europe and Asia, we’re getting older, less quickly. 

Mainly because we have more babies, and more immigrants.