Business news

Miles Bryan

Update: The Wyoming Pari-Mutuel Comission — the state agency that regulates gaming in Wyoming — has issued an order temporarily banning historical horse racing machines, beginning Monday. This follows the release of a Wyoming attorney general's report that found that the machines' bonus rounds were not in compliance with a 2013 law that legalized historical horse racing machines. The commission will be holding a special meeting Thursday to discuss how to bring the historical horse racing machines into compliance with state law. The original story is below. 

Marketplace for Thursday, October 1, 2015

Oct 1, 2015

Egg McMuffin logistics; campaign contributions speak; and two-tiered labor. 

Getting by in America on $2 a day

Oct 1, 2015
Kai Ryssdal and Daisy Palacios

It seems inconceivable that anyone in America could survive on $2 a day or less.

Kathy Edin, a sociologist from Johns Hopkins University, and Luke Shaefer, of the University of Michigan, have discovered not only does it happen, but that the number of the country’s extreme poor is going up. They reported their findings in a new book, “$2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America.”

PODCAST: Herding for minimum wage

Oct 1, 2015
David Brancaccio

On today's show, what to expect from Friday's jobs report; Mexico's successful oil drilling auction; and we'll talk about sheepherders, who often don't earn the minimum wage.


Airing on Thursday, October 1, 2015: We'll talk about the World Bank rethinking the poverty line; Google's new ad policy; and a study demonstrating that corporate diversity initiatives are not helping women break the glass ceiling.


Marketplace Tech for Thursday, October 1, 2015

Oct 1, 2015

Airing on Thursday, October 1, 2015: On today's show, we'll talk about the challenge of running two companies at once; why Google wants its cars to drive less perfectly; and why Michelin stars are a great honor, but not as helpful to the average diner as Yelp.


A new Missouri law offering tax breaks to computer data centers already is making an impact.

Internet service provider Bluebird Network is citing the incentives as one reason it is moving ahead with an expansion of a data center in Springfield.

The law that took effect in late August offers a sales tax exemption on data center equipment and utilities for businesses that meet certain investment thresholds and hire additional workers.

Bluebird Network estimates it could save $191,000 of taxes on its planned $8 million expansion.

Katherine Hambrick / Missouri Business Alert

Billy Martin did not know what to expect before delivering his pitch on Friday, Sept. 18, to a group of judges and fellow entrepreneurs at the Techweek event in Kansas City.

As one of 20 finalists for LaunchKC, a business model competition for technology startup firms, Martin and his company Ulytic were about to take the final step before finding out if it would be one of 10 companies to receive a $50,000 check to support the next phase of his business.

Marketplace for Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Sep 30, 2015

The uncertain stop-gap government; it's deadline day for Bank of America; and making a sandwich from the ground up. 

Behind New York's Right to Shelter policy

Sep 30, 2015
Noel King

As New Yorkers face rising rents and stagnant wages, the city has seen a spike in homelessness. Around 60,000 New Yorkers currently live in municipal shelters. They are guaranteed a "Right to Shelter" that stems from an unprecedented 35-year-old lawsuit.

PODCAST: What makes seafood organic?

Sep 30, 2015
David Brancaccio

On today's show, we'll talk about the debate over pension advances; a look at the volatile third quarter; new credit card technology; and why it's hard to figure out what makes seafood "organic."

The science and economics behind "The Martian"

Sep 30, 2015
Molly Wood

The movie "The Martian," directed by Ridley Scott and starring Matt Damon, hits theaters this Friday. It's a big-budget Hollywood production about an astronaut stranded on Mars using his wits to survive. But this man-versus-nature epic has a surprisingly humble origin. It was initially published online for free by computer programmer Andy Weir, who used his computer design background and the combined knowledge of his readers to write what might be the most scientifically detailed novel about space travel. 

Google announced two new Nexus phones (among other things) Tuesday, but despite some impressive specs and a nice looking version of Android, the company is (mostly) clinging to a pricing model that buyers in the U.S. just don’t seem to want.  

If you want Google's Project Fi, the experimental (and still invite-only) WiFi-based wireless service Google started offering in April, you can apparently finance a Nexus phone for 24 months. That alone is notable, as it suggests that phone pricing has irrevocably changed. 

Group of colleges creates its own admissions app

Sep 29, 2015
Sally Herships

Applying to college is like the high school version of doing your taxes. But it is also stressful for the schools themselves. Like recently, when there were major tech problems with the common application. 

Jeff Alderson is a principal analyst with, a research and advisory firm focused on higher education. He said the glitches were especially problematic for elite institutions.

Marketplace for Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sep 29, 2015

A coalition of colleges aims to reinvent the college application process; former Labor Secretary Robert Reich tries to "save" capitalism; and indicators suggest more young people are entering the market for first homes. 

Business Insider wins a $343 million investment

Sep 29, 2015
Nova Safo

The German media giant Axel Springer said Tuesday it has paid $343 million to acquire almost all of the U.S. news site Business Insider.

The Berlin-based company, which already operates multiple newspapers and websites in Europe, said the acquisition expands its digital audience to almost 200 million users. Business Insider (which syndicates Marketplace content) is now valued at $390 million — up from $100 million last year. The site has a monthly unique audience of 76 million, according to Axel Springer.

PODCAST: Healthcare on Capitol Hill

Sep 29, 2015
David Brancaccio

On today's show, we'll talk about Aetna and Anthem's appearance on Capitol Hill  today; more on news that Cargill will wind down its hedge fund arm; and how some VW customers feel in light of the recent emissions scandal.

Locals issue a blanket statement

Sep 29, 2015
Tobin Low

If you are a small town in Switzerland, what do you do if the nearby tourist attraction starts to melt?

You cover it with blankets.

Located in the Urne Alps near the town of Gletsch, the Rhône Glacier is the largest in the area. It also has an unusual feature that attracts tourists.

"You can go inside the glacier and see the different layers of ice. In a way, it is a bit like travelling through time," said Pierrette Rey of the Swiss branch of World Wildlife Federation.

Marketplace Tech for Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sep 29, 2015

Airing on Tuesday, September 29, 2015: On today's show, we'll talk about Tesla’s Model X; an artist whose work confronts surveillance in tech; and the photo technology known as HiRISE that allowed scientists to determine there is briny water on Mars. 

Insurance CEOs again called before lawmakers

Sep 29, 2015
D Gorenstein

Top health insurance executives are making the rounds these days in Washington.

Last week, CEOs from Aetna and Anthem – who are each looking to complete mega-mergers – testified before the Senate, and the two return again Tuesday for a hearing in the House.

Lawmakers have pressed the executives to detail how consumers will benefit from these potential deals.


Airing on September 29, 2015: On today's show, we'll talk about why global stock markets have been in such a snit; why schools are preparing for a shutdown no matter what; and a comedian talks about the art of dropping the mic.

Being a competitive coding jock has its perks

Sep 28, 2015
Kai Ryssdal and Mukta Mohan

When one thinks of sports, a bunch of guys sitting around typing on a computer is probably not what comes to mind. But apparently, competitive coding is a thing, and being a coding jock has its perks. Participants receive all-expenses-paid trips to compete, job offers and even cash prizes. Ashlee Vance wrote about the sport of coding for Bloomberg Business. 

Marketplace for Monday, September 28, 2015

Sep 28, 2015

Shell's out, but Arctic oil is staying in the ground; 70,000 medical codes for your doctor to consider; and why Fred Savage took "The Grinder" job.

Obama and Putin clash over trade at the United Nations

Sep 28, 2015
Tracey Samuelson

More than three dozen heads of state took their turns at the United Nation’s podium Monday, from China’s Xi Jinping to Cuba’s Raul Castro. But among the stars of the show were Barack Obama and Russia’s Vladimir Putin. It was Obama’s second speech at the U.N. in two days, but the first for Putin in roughly a decade.

Fred Savage on-screen again for 'The Grinder'

Sep 28, 2015
Kai Ryssdal and Bridget Bodnar

Child actor Fred Savage eventually turned to directing and producing. Now, he's back in front of the camera in the Fox comedy "The Grinder" with Rob Lowe, which premieres Tuesday at 8:30. Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal talked to Savage about acting, directing and producing. 

On which job he prefers:

PODCAST: A big split for Alcoa

Sep 28, 2015
David Brancaccio

On today's show, we'll talk about Alcoa splitting into two companies; how copyright laws may have factored into VW's emissions scandal; India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi's meetings with tech giants; and how financial assistance for poor families in Georgia is threatened by an accounting sleight-of-hand.

Michell Eloy

On a walk through the cavernous Atlanta Community Food Bank, Danah Craft points out what she said is a vital food item: a jar of peanut butter.

For a family relying on food banks, peanut butter is an important source of protein. “This is the kind of food that helps families put a balanced meal on the table,” Craft said.

Craft heads the Georgia Food Bank Association. The group helps distribute millions of pounds of food to the state’s eight regional food banks, but it can’t always rely on what’s donated to meet the needs of Georgia’s poor.

A story of dirty emissions … and copyright law

Sep 28, 2015
Mitchell Hartman

Squirreled away in something called the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 is fine print that makes it risky to dig around under the hood of a new car and find out what makes it tick, explains Kit Walsh of the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

“The modern automobile is controlled by about 100 different computers running software created by the automakers or third parties that they contract with,” Walsh said. "And they typically will lock down that software so that you can’t even look at it, let alone modify it as a user."

The UN's 17 goals for the next 15 years

Sep 25, 2015
Lizzie O'Leary and Raghu Manavalan

The United Nations mets in New York this week, and one portion on its agenda was approving 17 new Sustainable Development Goals that primarily targeted the world's developing countries. As The Guardian reports: