Business news

Uber and Lyft battle to attract new drivers

Sep 14, 2016
Adam Allington

Most of the headlines today are about Uber’s rollout of semi-driverless cars in Pittsburgh, but the company is still a long way off from making its drivers obsolete. In fact, in many cities it can’t find enough of them.

“You know, because there really is a limited number of people willing to do this type of work,” Harry Campbell said, creator of  the popular blog, The Rideshare Guy.

Sam Beard

British Prime Minister Theresa May is facing her first big economic and foreign policy decision.  May has to decide whether to give the go ahead to a hugely controversial multi-billion-pound plan approved by her predecessor David Cameron who resigned as prime minister when the UK voted to leave the European Union in a referendum on June 23rd. 

Bayer purchases Monsanto for $128 a share

Sep 14, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about Bayer's decision to purchase Monsanto for nearly $57 billion; why the Chase Sapphire Reserve card is so popular among millennials; and how to make the most of your frequent flyer miles and hotel points. 

European Union seeks to tighten up copyright laws

Sep 14, 2016
Lane Wallace

A new proposal for regulating the internet is out today in the European Union, following months of work by the European Commission to clarify rules and regulations about broadband and copyright.

But the copyright rules have already proven controversial, and are likely to face pushback from both U.S.-based companies like Google and Facebook, and European consumer advocates.

Kim Adams

Fewer Americans lived in poverty in 2015 compared with 2014, according to the latest numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau. In reports released Tuesday, the agency said the poverty rate (before considering social safety net benefits) was 13.5 percent, a drop of a little over 1 percent from the year before.

7 ways to keep your miles from expiring without flying

Sep 14, 2016
Mark Orlowski

Often, travelers needlessly resign to having billions of frequent flyer miles and hotel points expire because they didn’t continue using the same airline or hotel chain.

Many people don’t know they can easily extend the life of those miles without ever setting foot on an airplane or checking into a hotel. In fact, any activity on a miles/points account will usually reset the expiration date. Sometimes, recently expired points can even be reinstated for a small fee or at no cost.

Here’s how to preserve your points and miles:

Track expiration dates

Prestige credit cards are a big hit with millennials

Sep 14, 2016
Adam Allington

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card was so popular out of the gate, that the company ran out of the metal alloy used to make the cards. People are even uploading unboxing videos to YouTube. The cards have become a viral phenomenon of sorts, thanks in part to effusive praise from travel sites and bloggers.

Will NFL fans watch football on Twitter?

Sep 14, 2016
JaeRan Kim

This Thursday night, NFL fans will have a new way to watch the game — streaming it on Twitter. It’s part of a $10 million deal the social media company won back in April.

The streaming deal is an experiment for both the NFL and Twitter to test new ways to reach out to their respective — and sometimes overlapping — audiences.  

In Hawaii, the reality of homelessness can hit suddenly

Sep 13, 2016
Michael Solomon

It’s a chaotic scene at Honolulu’s largest homeless shelter, the Institute for Human Services Iwilei facility. Babies are crying and children run in the street, as families line up on the porch outside waiting for lunch.

"It's crowded and there are a lot of people here. That makes it kind of depressing," said 19-year-old Malia Derden. She’s from Kalihi and used to be homeless, although she prefers the term "houseless." She’s visiting her mom, Rose, who has been at the IHS shelter for a little more than a year.

Tony Wagner

More people were arrested Tuesday near Geln Ullin, North Dakota for protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline. The $3.7 billion project runs through four states, but it’s been most controversial in south-central North Dakota, where it’s slated to run near the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe reservation.

Why payphones are still a thing in Hawaii

Sep 13, 2016
Donna Tam

Cellphones may have replaced payphones in most of the U.S., but in Hawaii, the pay phone decline is going at a much slower pace, the Honolulu Civil Beat reported today.

Race to the (seat) bottom

Sep 13, 2016
Amy Scott

Not all that long ago, there were just three options for flying: coach, business and first class. Now the Big Three airlines are carving up the cabin into more and more sections, to compete with low-cost carriers like Spirit and Frontier.

Census Bureau to release new poverty numbers

Sep 13, 2016
Kim Adams

Today, the Census Bureau will release new data on poverty in the U.S. The numbers for 2015 help inform decisions about funding for safety net programs, and provide the official “poverty rate.” The data will also detail how different gender, ethnic and income groups are faring in the economy.

David Cooper of the Economic Policy Institute expects the poverty rate to decrease, which means fewer people living below the poverty line.

Lane Wallace

Oil futures were looking gloomy on Tuesday morning following the latest monthly report from the International Energy Agency, which forecasts oil supply and demand. The agency predicts oversupply and low prices will continue at least through the first half of 2017, but it calls the supply side of the situation “confounding.”

David Brancaccio

It's been eight years since the financial crisis and the U.S. economy is still in recovery mode, though it may be the envy of Europe, China, and other countries around the world.

Earlier this year, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew spoke to us about America's role in the world economy and tax inversions (when companies purchase foreign companies to change their tax liabilities). 

Marketplace Tech for Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Sep 13, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about the vulnerability of electronic voting systems amid this year's election season. Plus, we'll interview Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein from the band "Survive" about their musical involvement in the TV show "Stranger Things."

Fed officials touch a market nerve

Sep 12, 2016
Sabri Ben-Achour

Fed governors and presidents have been popping up like Whack-a-Moles, offering their thoughts about whether we should be talking about rate hikes or not. Gov. Lael Brainard warned against moving too quickly; Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said there’s a strong case for having a discussion about raising rates this year; Minneapolis Fed President Neil Kashkari said he saw no urgency.

Markets have followed suit — down, then up as they reacted to various signals about whether or not the central bank is ready to hike rates.

Kai Ryssdal

Donald Trump went on CNBC this morning — he's got a standing invitation to be on this program as well, by the way — and he talked about a lot, including the Federal Reserve. He accused Fed Chair Janet Yellen of keeping rates "artificially low" and creating a "false stock market" to make President Barack Obama look good.

Donna Tam

The first boat to be solely powered by renewable energy will set sail for what its crew hopes is a historic around-the-world trip, the Agence France-Presse reported today.

Now's your chance to be the next Mr. Burns

Sep 12, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about the growing number of people who are opening traditional bank accounts; an assisted living facility that's aiming to help LGBT seniors; and an unfinished nuclear power plant that's for sale. 

New documentary examines at-risk youth in US schools

Sep 12, 2016
David Brancaccio

The new documentary "The One That Got Away" takes a look at the tough problem of dealing with at-risk youth in American schools. 

In the feature, Dan Gill,  a teacher at Glenfield Middle School in Montclair, New Jersey, reconnects with his former student, Tourrie Moses. Moses is serving prison time for manslaughter and aggravated assault. 

One of the documentary's co-producers, Steve McCarthy, joined us to talk about the work. 

On what attracted McCarthy to this particular story:

Lisa Napoli

With the nation’s senior population expected to double in the next 20 years, there’s a growing need for senior services.

One niche: the millions of LGBT baby boomers who came from an era when equal rights were only a dream.

A new community in Palm Springs is a sign of the changing times.

Lauren Kabakoff toured a visitor around the resort-style property her family owns.

“This was an old motel, built in the 1950s. I heard it was revamped in the '70s,” she said.

Roxane Gay takes the Marketplace Quiz

Sep 9, 2016
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, author Roxane Gay took our money-inspired personality questionnaire.

Lizzie O'Leary

This week, investigative reporter Charles Duhigg visits the show to discuss his latest book, "Smarter, Faster, Better" and why certain people and companies are more productive than others. Click the audio player above to hear our interview with him. 

Here's an excerpt from his book:

My introduction to the science of productivity began in the summer of 2011, when I asked a friend of a friend for a favor.

Marketplace Weekend for Friday, September 9, 2016

Sep 9, 2016

On this episode of Marketplace Weekend, Marketplace's Reema Khrais and Andrea Chang of the L.A. Times go long and short on for-profit colleges, meal delivery boxes, Chipotle and travel to Cuba. We hear stories from a "Star Trek" event in New York City, and Marketplace senior tech correspondent Molly Wood talks Apple and headphone jacks. Marketplace's Lewis Wallace reports on police interaction with people with disabilities, and writer Roxanne Gay takes the Marketplace Quiz. 

Kim Adams

Grocery store chain Kroger releases earnings Friday. It’s one of several big names in the food industry making a commitment to “cage-free” eggs, with plans to shift its whole supply chain to cage free by 2025.

To encourage consumers to make the switch, Kroger announced a new, less expensive line of cage-free eggs this week. One of the ways the company was able to bring down the cost was by switching to less expensive packaging than is usually used for cage-free eggs.

Lane Wallace

Wells Fargo will pay a total of $185 million in fines over a scandal in which bank employees opened accounts in customers’ names without their permission.

Over a period of several years, bank employees used customer information and money to temporarily open accounts in order to meet quotas. As many as 1.5 million accounts were opened without customers being aware, and more than 500,000 credit cards issued.

More Americans come into the banking system

Sep 9, 2016
Marketplace Weekend Staff

"Unbanked" is the term used by financial regulators and consumer advocates to describe people who live, work, pay bills and borrow for emergencies entirely outside the traditional banking system. Being "unbanked" can limit peoples' access to affordable credit and leave them vulnerable to predatory lending.

David Brancaccio

The old line in Hollywood is that "everybody wants to be a producer."

Even, it seems, the coffee guy. Starbucks has announced it's going into content production: Think online articles, podcasts, video feature stories. They'll be distributed through Starbucks' website, its mobile app and other online media, such as Mic and Upworthy.

The promise here is not smarmy infomercials, but stories about people making their communities and/or the world better. Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz joined us to talk about the company's plans. 

Molly Wood

In the land of brands, fall means one thing: Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes.

Now, regular Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal has a legendary hatred for the PSL, as the fans call it. Pumpkin anything, really.