Marketplace from APM

Mon-Fri 6:30PM – 7PM
  • Hosted by Kai Ryssdal

American Public Media's Marketplace presents news on business, economics, and money for the rest of us.

More info on Marketplace

When Dion Walker closes his eyes and thinks of his next job, he thinks of palm trees and a nice breeze. That’s because he is thinking of a cruise ship in Hawaii — specifically, the American Pride.

Four years ago, less than 10 percent of U.S. students had adequate internet bandwidth in their classrooms, based on Federal Communications Commission standards. Today, 88 percent do, according to a report out this week from nonprofit EducationSuperHighway. How did the digital divide get narrowed so quickly? 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

As Hurricane Maria beats its path through the Caribbean, Puerto Rico has more than 450 shelters to house up to 60,000 evacuees. Many are from surrounding islands. They’ve been on Puerto Rico since before Hurricane Irma hit and may need a place to stay for weeks or months.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

(U.S. Edition) Though much of Puerto Rico was spared from Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria is now bearing down. We'll take a look at the efforts the territory is making to shelter evacuees. Afterwards, we'll discuss a new report that shows nearly 9 out of every 10 U.S. students have adequate internet bandwidth in their classrooms — a huge increase from four years ago when less than 10 percent did. How'd the digital divide get narrowed so quickly?

Germany has a national election coming up on September 24, and on the same ballot, in Berlin, voters will decide whether to keep the local Tegel airport open. Tegel sits about six miles from the city center, but opponents say it’s too old and pricey to maintain. They want a new airport currently under construction to replace Tegel.

After the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced it was slashing its Obamacare marketing budget by 90 percent on Aug. 31, agency spokespeople cited “diminishing returns” from its television, radio and Internet ads that encourage people to sign up for health insurance.

There's a federal law prohibiting workplace discrimination based on a person's sex — but not based on a person's sexual orientation.

There is a chance that could change, though. A lesbian security guard named Jameka Evans filed a lawsuit, saying she was harassed at work based on her sexual orientation, which a federal court dismissed. Now the nonprofit advocacy group, Lambda Legal Defense Fund, has filed an appeal that could make its way to the Supreme Court. 

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service ... U.S. President Donald Trump has vowed to bolster the nation’s steel industry but we’ll tell you why a merger between two giants suggests that pain in the sector are global. Afterwards, we’ll take a dive into the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s assessment of the world economy, which suggests the global growth outlook might be brighter, but it doesn’t necessarily mean sustained growth just yet.

We might not see the effects of the Equifax breach for years

9 hours ago

The Equifax security breach that affected nearly half of all Americans has left us with a lot of questions, like how did we get here? And where do we go from here to protect our data? And now, Congress wants answers. It sent the company a letter asking it to outline its ongoing security practices. Equifax has until Sept. 22 to respond.

Certainly legislators are worried about data. But are regular people, too?

09/20/2017: Is it too late for data regulation?

9 hours ago

Some 143 million people had their personal information stolen in the Equifax data breach. And that has a lot of us asking: How did we get here? Marketplace Tech host Molly Wood talks to Nancy Kim, who teaches internet studies at California Western School of Law, about why regulating data collection is so hard. And we hear from a few New Yorkers about their data security worries — or lack of them.

33: Equifax and the future of your data

22 hours ago

In the wake of the Equifax hack (and the one before that, and the one before that ... ), how should you think about credit, data security and online privacy? And what could the European Union teach American companies about protecting your data? Then: "Outlander" showrunner Ronald D. Moore answers our Make Me Smart question, and we answer some of your questions about #NoConfederate and our interview with April Reign.  

The Federal Reserve has been backstopping the American economy for almost a decade with its $4 trillion pile of bonds and mortgage-backed securities it bought up during and after the financial crisis. The idea was to keep borrowing costs low and goose the whole economy. It's widely expected that the Fed's going to start unwinding its balance sheet tomorrow, letting the economy work a little more normally. So what's going to happen? Then: FEMA says fewer than 20 percent of the homes affected by Harvey carried flood insurance, and that makes recovery all the more difficult.

Why we still don't grasp racial economic inequality

Sep 19, 2017

There's a new study out from researchers at Yale University, which says that Americans — white Americans mostly — underestimate the economic inequality between white and black Americans. 

Mortgage lenders lower barriers for those with student debt

Sep 19, 2017

Mortgage backers Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have recently changed lending rules to give more leeway to borrowers like Kristen Griffin, who have high student loans.

Griffin is a librarian at Nemo Vista High School in Center Ridge, Arkansas. She and her husband Mark are window shopping on Zillow while their 2-year-old son Fletcher sleeps nearby.

“It has a huge front porch. I am a front porch sitter,” she said while looking at a house on the site. It’s an older home with extra room for a library.

Answering your questions about the #NoConfederate campaign

Sep 19, 2017

April Reign was a guest on a recent episode of Make Me Smart. In 2015, she created the Twitter hashtag #OscarsSoWhite, which prompted the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to examine the diversity of its members. Reign continues to influence conversations about casting in movies and television. 

She quit her six figure job to help other women better understand their cars

Sep 19, 2017

Patrice Banks was a failure analyst with an engineering background making six figures when she tried and failed to find a female mechanic. A self-described "auto airhead," Banks was frustrated with her lack of car knowledge and decided to become a mechanic herself. Earlier this year, she opened her own mechanic shop in Philadelphia, The Girls Auto Clinic Repair Center. She hires other female mechanics and most of her customers are women. 

It’s a holiday tradition: every fall, retailers staff up their stores to prepare for the inevitable crush of shoppers. But this year, Macy’s said it’ll be hiring fewer holiday workers — about 80,000 people in total. And more of those workers will be operating out of warehouses, packing online orders, than last year. Could these fulfillment center jobs be an opportunity for the tens of thousands of retail workers that have been laid off this year? 

Click the above audio player to hear the full story.

09/19/2017: How'll retail fare over the holidays?

Sep 19, 2017

(Markets Edition) Toys 'R' Us has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which means it's going to try to restructure the business instead of shuttering its operations. We'll look at how the company has struggled with debt since 2005, when private-equity firms took over in a $6.6 billion buyout. Next, we'll talk about a possible upswing in the seasonal job market, and then discuss how Macy's fulfillment centers could be an opportunity for the tens of thousands of retail workers who lost their jobs this year. Finally, we'll report on the major stock indices, which are mixed this morning.

It’s been a volatile year for U.S. retailers. They’ve closed a record number of stores and slashed more jobs than they have since 2009. However, for this year’s holiday season, there’s expected to be a whole lot of hiring going on, as the economy strengthens and consumer confidence returns.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

(U.S. Edition) Toys 'R' Us is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, meaning it's going to try to reorganize in order to pay back its $5 billion in debt. We'll take a look at how the toy giant ended up in this jam. Afterwards, the head of Bridgewater Associates — Ray Dalio — joins us to discuss the unconventional methods his hedge fund uses to evaluate employees and their ideas.  That includes a system where employees rate each other, in real time, during meetings.

Toys 'R' Us files for bankruptcy, but keeps stores open

Sep 19, 2017

NEW YORK (AP) — Toys R Us, the big box toy retailer struggling with $5 billion in debt and intense online competition, has filed for bankruptcy protection ahead of the key holiday shopping season — and says its stores will remain open for business as usual.

The company based in Wayne, New Jersey, said late Monday that it was voluntarily seeking relief through the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in Richmond — and that its Canadian subsidiary would be seeking similar protection through a Canadian court in Ontario as it seeks to reorganize.

When a city becomes a tech hub, it usually also becomes a bubble: a housing bubble, a pay bubble and an industry bubble, to name a few. The tech world talks about these bubbles like they’re inevitable. But what if they aren't? Marketplace Tech host Molly Wood talks to Seattle-based Glenn Kelman, who is the CEO of the real estate site Redfin, about tech employees’ stock payouts and how reporting them properly could distribute wealth more evenly throughout the country.

Bridgewater Associates is the biggest private hedge fund in the world. Its balance sheet is imposing and so is its corporate culture. Over the years, founder Ray Dalio and team have worked out algorithms for feedback in which investment strategies and management decisions are openly questioned, pressure tested and revised. Employees rate each other in real-time, electronically, during meetings.

09/19/2017: Trouble in Toyland

Sep 19, 2017

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service ... Toys R Us, the largest U.S. toy chain, has filed for bankruptcy protection. We’ll explain what it means for the retailer’s global stores and the future of bricks-and-mortar toy selling. Afterwards, we’ll chat about how the People’s Bank of China’s consideration to open its capital markets to foreigners could be a negotiating tactic with the U.S. Then, ahead of this weekend’s elections, we’ll take you to a city in east Germany that is struggling to compete with the capital might of the western part of the country.

Are stock payouts linked to high housing prices?

Sep 19, 2017

When a city becomes a tech hub, it usually also becomes a bubble: a housing bubble, a pay bubble and an industry bubble, to name a few. The tech world talks about these bubbles like they’re inevitable. But what if they weren’t?

Rolling Stone sale reflects magazines’ challenges

Sep 18, 2017

If the Federal Reserve has an institutional opposite, it just might be Rolling Stone. This is the magazine that famously published writers like Hunter S. Thompson and more recently declared Goldman Sachs to be a “great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity.” Today there is news that the magazine, started by Jann Wenner 50 years ago with $7,500 of borrowed money, is for sale. Anyone want to buy a magazine? 

09/18/2017: Where hate finds a home online

Sep 18, 2017

Washington is getting all hot and bothered about health care again, but we're gonna keep our eye on the ball and start our show with the Fed, which is meeting this week. There's going to be a tea leaf reading, and some dot plot reading too. Then: We've been reporting a lot lately on hate groups and where they find homes online. Since Charlottesville, there's been more awareness of these groups, and they've been expelled from a lot of services, but that hasn't stopped other businesses from filling in the gap.

Hate groups sidestep Big Tech

Sep 18, 2017

In the weeks since the violent clashes between white supremacists and counterprotesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, many hate groups have found themselves no longer welcome on some major tech platforms. Facebook, Google and Cloudflare have all refused to offer basic hosting or social media services to them. So have some crowdfunding and payments transfer platforms, including Paypal.

Other platforms, however, are filling in the gap.

How the Equifax hack could have been avoided

Sep 18, 2017

There are a whole bunch of questions to ask about the Equifax hack, as we've been pointing out the past week or so. An important one, which comes with the news that the company's chief security officer and chief information officer are out, is this: What did Equifax know and when did it know it? 

(Markets Edition) We've said it before, and we'll say it again: the stock market is not the economy. The S&P 500 closed at an all-time high on Friday, and it's up this morning, along with the Dow and Nasdaq. But economist Julia Coronado, founder of Macropolicy Perspectives, joined us to discuss how these trends don't mean the economy is equally booming. Afterwards, we'll look at the Senate's scheduled vote on a bill that lays out America's spending priorities. One of them: countering threats from North Korea.