Business & Education

Business & education news

If the activists' predictions pan out, Wednesday might see one of the largest digital protests to date.

Dozens of websites and apps have joined ranks with consumer advocacy groups, through a "Day of Action," to publicly protest the plan by the Federal Communications Commission to roll back regulations it placed on Internet service providers in 2015.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

The speed of digital technology has allowed workers to be mobile and flexible, and more employers continue to embrace remote work policies.

But it has also created demand for continuous updates and real-time collaboration. And that change has driven some companies — including IBM, Best Buy and Yahoo — to recall some of their remote workforces back into the office.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Credit Agencies To Ease Up On Medical Debt Reporting

Jul 11, 2017

Millions of Americans have medical debt that's hurting their credit. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau estimated it's as many as 43 million people, according to data released in late 2014.

Now, some relief may be on the way.

Microsoft is announcing a new effort to connect more people to the Internet. Not people far away, in the so-called emerging markets — where other American tech giants have built Internet balloons and drones. Instead, Microsoft is focusing right here at home, on the 23.4 million people in rural America without broadband access.

A federal consumer watchdog agency has issued a new rule that will prevent credit card companies and banks from requiring customers to agree to settle disputes by arbitration rather than going to court.

In a statement released Monday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau explained:

We'll give it to you straight: If President Trump slaps a tariff on steel, the U.S. bourbon industry might be left reeling.

Trump has long vowed to impose tariffs on some imports, and his administration has recently focused on the steel industry. A blanket tariff on steel wouldn't just hurt China, the frequent target of Trump's trademark trade tirades. It would also deal a blow to allies such as Germany.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

This spring was strange in Oregon's Lane County.

"It rained every day. I'm exaggerating, but only by two days," says farmer Jason Hunton.

When Mother Nature rears her ugly head, Hunton watches his fields. He farms both organic and conventional land in Junction City, Ore.

"We're struggling. We've got a couple of [organic] fields that have some real thistle problems. I want to get some tarps and solarize it — cover it up and see if we can get that to cook itself in some of the thicker areas," Hunton says.

Wells Fargo bank has struck a settlement to reimburse customers who were harmed when bank employees created unwanted accounts in their names. A federal judge has granted a preliminary approval for the settlement in the class action case.

Wells Fargo says compensation will depend on the financial harm customers suffered. Someone who paid an improper $35 dollar fee likely will receive less money than someone whose credit score was damaged and had to accept a home loan with a higher interest rate.

In the epicurean world, Northern California is famous for two intoxicants — wine and weed. With recreational marijuana about to be legal in the Golden State, some cannabis entrepreneurs are looking to the wine industry as a model.

On the elegant terrace of a winery overlooking the vineyard-covered hills of Sonoma County, north of San Francisco, a dozen invited guests are sipping pinot noir, nibbling hors d'oeuvres and taking hits off a water pipe.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Colorado Employers Rethinking Drug Testing

Jul 8, 2017

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Even in marijuana-friendly Colorado, anyone can be denied employment for using the drug. In fact, there are few protections anywhere in the country for employees who fail a drug test, even in states where cannabis is legal. From Colorado Public Radio, Ben Markus reports.

Carol McDaniel has a perennial challenge: Attracting highly specialized acute-care certified neonatal nurse practitioners to come work for Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla.

They are "always in short supply, high demand, and [it is a] very, very small group of people," says McDaniel, the hospital's recruitment director.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Friday News Roundup - Domestic

Jul 7, 2017

The governor of New Jersey gets grief for going to the beach, and more than 40 states say they will not or cannot turn over all the data President Trump’s voting commission wants. Those stories and more on the Friday News Roundup.

GUESTS

Ed O’Keefe, Congressional correspondent, The Washington Post

Juana Summers, Editor, CNN Politics

Michael Scherer, Washington bureau chief, Time magazine.

There's a fight brewing over who can fish for red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico, and for how long. And it's serious politics.

Recreational anglers pushed the Trump administration to intervene after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration set the shortest recreational snapper season on record – just three days in June. The result was a deal between the Commerce Department and Gulf states to extend the season.

Updated at 5 p.m. ET

Smoke and flames rose from the streets of Hamburg for a second day Friday amid the start of the Group of 20 summit of the world's leading economic powers.

Police battled protesters, including some who threw gasoline bombs, set vehicles on fire and tried to storm the convention center where world leaders were meeting. Many other demonstrators were peaceful.

The Associated Press reports that police ordered nearly 1,000 additional officers to add to the 20,000 already reportedly on duty in the northern German city.

An estimated 222,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy in June, according to the monthly employment report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Friday.

"The job gains were better than expected — most economists had predicted a gain of 180,000 jobs," NPR's Chris Arnold reports for our Newscast unit.

The unemployment rate rose slightly to 4.4 percent from 4.3 percent — a 16-year low that was hit in May.

Home prices have finally clawed their way back to the peak of the housing bubble. That's on average nationally. The story is very different when you zoom in on different counties or cities in particular.

Friday is a big day for Tesla. The automaker's very first Model 3 will roll off the assembly line, the culmination of years of planning, engineering and hype.

Elon Musk, the company's co-founder and chief executive, has been promising an affordable long-range electric car meant for the masses. He first wrote about the dream vehicle in the company's not-so-secret Secret Plan in 2006.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Two hugely popular live entertainment companies are joining forces. Cirque du Soleil announced yesterday it is acquiring Blue Man Productions. NPR's Rose Friedman reports.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

It is arguably President Trump's most anticipating - anticipated meeting to date.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

There's a lot of talk on Capitol Hill about the tax cuts included in the Republican health plans, but unless you are a frequent user of tanning beds or have personal wealth that puts you in the top 1 percent, you might not feel much effect.

The House and Senate bills both change or eliminate more than a dozen taxes that were levied to help pay for the Affordable Care Act's insurance subsidies and to bolster Medicare and expand Medicaid. Republicans and other ACA critics have argued that the taxes are onerous for businesses and families.

As part of a set of ambitious new environmental goals, France expects to do away entirely with the sale of diesel and gas vehicles by 2040.

Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot announced the proposal on Thursday as part of the country's renewed commitment to the Paris climate deal, reports the BBC.

Hulot said that financial assistance would be available to lower-income drivers to replace their gas vehicles with cleaner ones.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Pages