Economy & Business

Business news

Home sales may be turning around

May 23, 2016

On today's show, we'll talk about increased cooperation between the U.S. and Vietnam; home sale predictions; and the struggles for parents during summer break. 

For working parents, summer break is no vacation

May 23, 2016
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Rowan Moore Gerety

Over spring break, Wanda Gomez said her sons knew exactly where they wanted to spend the afternoon. “They said, today’s a pool day, but like, we cannot go to pool, because I have to work,” she said.

That’s how it goes all summer long. For many parents, public school offers an important benefit beyond education: free child care. Gomez has a 5 year old and a 14 year old, and she often brings them along to her job, registering new voters outside a local grocery store. “It’s more difficult when they start, ‘Mommy, I’m hungry; Mommy, I’m tired; Mommy, I’m thirsty,’" Gomez said.

Before the mortgage crisis, real estate seemed like a sure bet. Pretty much anyone could buy a house: no money down, thousands of square feet, second and third vacation homes were not out of the question. Then the bubble burst.

Homeowners across the U.S. confronted the reality that their houses were worth a fraction of what they had paid for them. Now, a decade later, even though the recession is over, more than 6 million homeowners are still upside down on their mortgages.

The Implications Of Overtime Pay Proposal

May 22, 2016
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Copyright 2016 WNYC Radio. To see more, visit WNYC Radio.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

In 2011, Lariat Alhassan had a business in Abuja, Nigeria. Larclux Paint was the name. She sold house paint. And industrial paint. Textured paint. Paint that fills in cracks in your walls. It was a paint company. But a really small one.

"The employee I had was just me. I was the production manager. I was the marketer. I was delivery person. I was everything," says Alhassan, laughing. "Except the security."

That was the company. A woman in her late 20s and a security guard watching over a factory space she rented to make the paint.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Will work for Tesla

May 20, 2016
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Kai Ryssdal

This final note today, which comes with the following caveat.

A couple of years ago, also on a Friday, as it happens, I made a joke about how that day was gonna be my last day hosting this program because I'd discovered a company in Florida that had Beer Cart Friday every week.

The boss came by with a beer cart and gave out free beer.

What's not to like, right?

Well, let's just say not everyone realized I was kidding, and I got something of a talking to.

So to repeat, this is not that.

House and Senate negotiators have agreed on a plan to update a 40-year-old law regulating the safety of chemicals.

The new, redesigned "Nutrition Facts" label is coming. The Food and Drug Administration has announced that the new label will be required on most packaged food by July 2018.

Weekly Wrap: Who cares about a trade war?

May 20, 2016
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Kai Ryssdal

If they hadn't already, the politics of the presidential campaign are definitely bumping up against economic reality now.

"Trade war?" presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump said at a fundraiser this week. "We're losing $500 billion in trade with China. Who the hell cares if there's a trade war?"

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