What's the busiest U.S. Consulate in the world? If you guessed in Mexico or China, you'd be wrong.
It's actually in Brazil, Sao Paulo to be exact. The consulate there is giving a record number of visas to Brazilians who want to visit the U.S. And that is giving a boost to the economies of cities like Miami.
On a recent day, Tiago Dalcien and his girlfriend stand outside the U.S. Consulate in Sao Paulo clutching their passports and other documents. He is a 30-year-old banker; his girlfriend is a doctor.
The government's decision Tuesday to oppose the merger of US Airways and American Airlines stunned airline analysts, but many predicted the deal eventually will win go through.
"Given that other airline mergers were approved, this was a surprise," University of Richmond transportation economist George Hoffer said. Other major carriers already have been allowed to combine forces, so "it's illogical to oppose this merger. This move comes a day late and a dollar short," he said.
Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 4:26 pm
For a few hours Tuesday, it appeared that Chipotle Mexican Grill, an ever expanding source of fast food for the ethically conscious consumer, had softened its hard line against antibiotics in meat production.
William Ackman, a controversial hedge fund manager, has resigned from the board of the J.C. Penney Company. Ackman is Penny's largest shareholder and had been engaged in a public dispute with the board over who should lead the struggling retailer.
The proposed merger of U.S. Airways and American Airlines ran into major turbulence on Tuesday as the Justice Department and six state attorneys general filed an antitrust suit aimed at blocking the deal. Justice Department officials said the merger would eliminate competition and put consumers at risk of higher prices.
Power companies all over the country are in the process of replacing old residential meters with new digital smart ones. These meters transmit real time data back to the utilities, giving a precise picture of how much electricity customers are using and when. Audie Cornish talks to Severin Borenstein — director of the University of California Energy Institute — about the technology.
The New York Department of Financial Services has issued subpoenas to several companies using the virtual currency Bitcoin for more information on how they do business. Audie Cornish talks to Jerry Brito, senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, about the complications of regulating digital money.
Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 2:46 pm
Derision: It's what would usually greet plans for a futuristic transportation system that could take passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 30 minutes. But when Elon Musk, the billionaire inventor behind PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX, unveils such a plan, the world pays attention (even if it draws skeptics).
Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 12:54 pm
The railway whose crude oil-carrying train derailed and exploded in the center of Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, last month can no longer operate in Canada, the country's Transportation Agency says. The disaster resulted in more than 40 deaths and the destruction of many of the town's central buildings.
Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 12:05 pm
Meet Pamela Maria Wright — the "contemporary Latina consumer." She has two kids — Nico and Rita — whom she hopes will be bilingual, as she is. She's a tech-savvy working professional with a master's degree, but she's also very traditional and family-oriented. (While I was visiting her home, her father showed up for a surprise visit. "How much more Latino can you get?" Wright asked.)
And our last word in business today is: Traffic Solution.
One way to beat bumper-to-bumper traffic is a vintage and very rare 1954 Aerocar, offered for sale by Courtesy Aircraft in Rockford, Illinois.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
This vehicle apparently converts from car to airplane in about 10 minutes and tops out at 60 miles per hour on land, 110 in the sky. That's pretty fast. But with an asking price just shy of a million dollars.
NPR's business news starts with BlackBerry weighing its option.
(SOUNDBITE OF THEME MUSIC)
GREENE: The Canadian telecom firm announced yesterday that it maybe looking for new owners. BlackBerry was valued at more than $80 billion back in 2008. Then the iPhone and Android came along and stole its dominance of the smartphone market. Now BlackBerry is worth only about $5.4 billion and its market share is plummeting.
Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:59 am
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
Hispanic American are an increasingly important consumer demographic to woo. That's according to a new study from the market research firm Nielsen. The report says that most of today's Latinas are the primary decision makers when it comes to household spending.
But marketing to them is a real challenge, as NPR's Shereen Marisol Meraji reports.
SHEREEN MARISOL MERAJI, BYLINE: Welcome to the home of the contemporary Latina consumer.