Business & Education

Parallels
2:00 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Brazilians Flood To U.S. On Massive Shopping Sprees

Camila DeSouza, a 17-year-old Brazilian, shops for shoes at a mall in Sunrise, Fla., on July 16, 2012. During their winter, Brazilians flock to the U.S., mainly to shop. Even with the cost of airfare figured in, many products are far cheaper in the U.S. than in Brazil.
Charles Trainor Jr. Miami Herald/MCT /Landov

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 6:26 pm

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.

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Business
4:28 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

DOJ Suit Seen Delaying, Not Killing Big Airline Merger

A United Airlines jet takes off behind a US Airways jet at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on Tuesday.
Win McNamee Getty Images

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.

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The Salt
3:38 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Chipotle Is Keeping Its Meat Antibiotic-Free After All

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.

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Business
3:34 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

J.C. Penney Board Member Resigns After Criticizing Management

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 5:31 pm

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.

Business
3:34 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

DOJ Tries To Block Airline Merger With Antitrust Suit

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 5:31 pm

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.

Business
3:34 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Some Consumers Push Back Against 'Smart' Utility Meters

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 5:31 pm

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.

Business
3:34 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Lawmakers, Banking Regulators Take On Bitcoin

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 5:39 pm

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.

All Tech Considered
2:03 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Why The World Pays Attention When Elon Musk Proposes An Idea

Musk with the Tesla Model S in Fremont on Oct. 1, 2011.
Stephen Lam Reuters/Landov

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).

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The Two-Way
12:16 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Canada Revokes License Of Company In Quebec Rail Disaster

The railway company whose train derailed and exploded in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, last month can no longer operate in Canada. An image shows the scene one week after the disaster.
Ian Willms Getty Images

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.

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Code Switch
10:59 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Latinas Drive Hispanic Purchasing Power In The U.S.

Latina pop star Thalía holds a toddler playing a tumbadora during a Pampers promotional event launching Mi Música, Mi Herencia (My Music, My Heritage).
Marc Serota AP

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.)

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The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Justice Sues To Block US Airways-American Airlines Merger

A US Airways plane rests near two American Airlines jets at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport last year. The combined carrier would be named American Airlines.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 1:33 pm

A merger of American Airlines and US Airways would violate U.S. antitrust law, the Justice Department, six state attorneys general and the District of Columbia allege in a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

Bloomberg reports that Justice alleges the merger would lead to "less competition in the industry and higher prices for consumers." The wire service explains:

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Business
4:42 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Flying Car Could Get You Where You Need To Be Fast

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:59 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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.

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Business
4:42 am
Tue August 13, 2013

BlackBerry May Be Sold

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:59 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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.

Economy
4:42 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Communities Debate Whether Sharing Services Saves Money

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:59 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

We're going to take a look this morning at how the economic downturn has hurt the places where we live - cities, counties, towns - and the ways that people are trying fight through.

MONTAGNE: We begin in Wisconsin, where, as in much of the country, municipalities are running out of sources of cash. Residents complain taxes are too high, then wince when services are cut.

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Business
4:42 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Why Modern Latinas Are A Challenge To Marketers

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:59 am

Transcript

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.

PAMELA MARIA WRIGHT: Hi.

MERAJI: Hi. How are you?

Good. How are you?

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