NPR Business

Business
6:08 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Why Ben Franklin Is The World's Banker

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 11:43 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now it's a rare thing for Americans to get a glimpse of Ben Franklin's face on a hundred dollar bill. Even if they have a hundred bucks most people do not carry a hundred dollar bill in their wallets. Many stores don't even accept bills that large because they fear counterfeits. So here's a surprise contained in a recent report from the Federal Reserve: Three-quarters of all American currency in circulation is in the form of hundreds.

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It's All Politics
4:40 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Congress Considers Patch To Keep Helium Supply Afloat

Deward Cawthon, a plant operator at the Federal Helium Reserve, walks through the Federal Crude Helium Enrichment Unit near Amarillo, Texas, in 2011.
Joyce Marshall MCT/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 2:39 pm

The Senate is considering legislation to prevent a global helium shortage from worsening in October. That's when one huge supply of helium in the U.S. is set to terminate. The House overwhelmingly passed its own bill last month to keep the Federal Helium Program going.

That was a relief to industries that can't get along without helium. The gas is used in MRI machines, semiconductors, aerospace equipment, lasers and of course balloons.

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All Tech Considered
2:53 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Will Tweaking Windows 8 Be Enough To Revive The PC?

Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system was criticized when it was released last year for features some said didn't mesh with a desktop PC environment. The company has indicated that it will address some of those issues in an upcoming update.
Richard Drew AP

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 11:43 am

When Microsoft introduced Windows 8 last year, the software giant billed the new operating system as one of the most critical releases in its history. The system would bridge the gap between personal computers and the fast-growing mobile world of tablets and smartphones.

But this week, the company sent signals that it might soon alter Windows 8 to address some early criticism of the operating system.

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The Two-Way
4:24 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Dow Jones Closes Above 15,000 For First Time

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 15,000 on Tuesday for the first time in its history.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

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The Two-Way
2:39 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Feds Say Debt Settlement Firm Defrauded 'Financially Desperate'

U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara addresses the media on Tuesday during a news conference on the indictment of Mission Settlement Agency.
John Moore Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 4:33 pm

The work of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the federal oversight agency established by Dodd-Frank three years ago, has resulted in its first criminal referral — a case against a debt-settlement company it says defrauded thousands of people.

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The Salt
12:04 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Wake Up And Smell The Tuna? Sunrise At Honolulu's Fish Auction

Among the 50,000 pounds of fish at the Honolulu auction last Friday was this opah, or moonfish, Lampris regius.
Joe Palca NPR

Originally published on Wed May 8, 2013 9:48 am

If you are up at 5 in the morning in Honolulu and are wondering what to do, I have a suggestion: Head over to Pier 38 and watch the Honolulu Fish Auction. It's quite a scene.

Getting up at 5 may seem a bit extreme, but for recent arrivals to Hawaii from the East Coast of the mainland — as I was last Friday — the six-hour time difference makes waking up early easy, if not inevitable.

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Planet Money
11:56 am
Tue May 7, 2013

A 'Poison Pill' In The Immigration Bill?

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 9:51 am

That big immigration bill working its way through the Senate would let in lots more highly skilled workers on temporary visas. But there's a catch.

The bill says all employers who want to hire workers on these H-1B visas:

... would be required to advertise on an Internet website maintained by the Department of Labor and offer the job to any U.S. worker who applies and is equally or better qualified than the immigrants ... sought...

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Business
5:11 am
Tue May 7, 2013

Casino Gambling Indicates Economic Turnaround Is Solid

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 11:04 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Here's a sign of economic recovery: Americans are gambling again. People apparently have enough money to throw some of it away. After a drop during the slowdown, casino revenues are up nationwide. In fact, up to pre-recession levels.

NPR's Nina Gregory reports.

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Economy
5:11 am
Tue May 7, 2013

Portugal Struggles To Avoid 2nd Bailout

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 11:04 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Europe is debating whether austerity - with its deep budget cuts and tax hikes - is the right cure for the continent's debt crisis. But in Portugal, one of the first countries bailed out by the European Union, the austerity drive goes on. The government there is struggling to repay its loans, and has announced more steep job and benefit cuts, as the country struggles to avoid what was Greece's fate - a second bailout.

Here's Lauren Frayer reports.

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Business
5:11 am
Tue May 7, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 11:04 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And in our last word in business today, we remember a woman who inspired one of TVs most famous moms.

(SOUNDBITE FROM TV SHOW, "THE SIMPSONS")

JULIE KAVNER: (as Marge Simpson) Oh, I've never been so proud. You both deserve a big, big reward.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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