Business & Education

Business & education news

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Trump Tower, the building that President-elect Donald Trump calls home, bills itself as "one of the world's elite luxury residences, catering to public figures, athletes, celebrities and other affluent sophisticates."

These days, some other people have taken up residence there as well: Secret Service agents.

Trump has said that his family won't move into the White House right away and will remain, for a few months at least, in the world-famous steel-and-glass office and residential building where they occupy three floors.

This week, just days before he says goodbye to his job, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack landed one last punch in a brawl that's gone on at his department since he got there eight long years ago.

Billionaire Wilbur Ross Jr. is one of the wealthiest members of what's being called Donald Trump's "gilded cabinet." The parade of Wall Street and corporate elites is drawing sharp criticism from many on the left. But actually, Ross, who Trump has chosen as his secretary of commerce, is respected by organized labor. Those close to him say he is not a right-wing ideologue, and some who've known him over the years say he's the best possible pick that Democrats could hope for.

Episode 592: Bell Wars

Dec 14, 2016

When you've got two companies down the road from each other making the same thing, you can almost guess the history. Originally there was just one company, but something happened. Maybe someone got angry, somebody left, and they started a second business, a competitor.

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Federal Reserve policymakers hiked their benchmark interest rate today for only the second time since the Great Recession. But officials signaled there would be more rate hikes in the coming year. NPR's John Ydstie reports.

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In New York, President-elect Donald Trump met with a group of tech executives today. Leaders from Google, Apple, Facebook and several others joined the meeting at Trump Tower. Here's some of what Trump had to say at the start.

Before using your food processor for holiday treats in the next few weeks, you might want to make sure the blades haven't been recalled for dozens of mouth lacerations.

Cuisinart's parent corporation, Conair, is voluntarily recalling about 8 million units after 69 consumers reported finding broken pieces of blade in their food. That includes 30 cases that caused mouth lacerations or tooth injuries, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

America's central bank is nudging its benchmark interest rate higher, announcing a move from the current 0.25-0.50 percent to a range of 0.50 and 0.75 percent. The decision emerged from a session of the Federal Open Market Committee on Wednesday.

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For the most part, the tech industry did not support President-elect Trump. But he won, and now Trump is convening a technology summit this afternoon in New York City, and expects Silicon Valley leaders will be there.

One of the industry's luminaries — Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft — was already at Trump Tower Tuesday. He seemed to suggest Trump and the industry will reach an accommodation.

In the hours before it sank, crew members of the cargo ship El Faro struggled to find a safe course around an increasingly serious storm, according to a transcript from the ship's data recorder released Tuesday.

All 33 crew members died when the freighter sank near the Bahamas on Oct. 1, 2015, after sailing into the middle of Category 3 Hurricane Joaquin.

The path of the Ohio River snakes southwest out of Pittsburgh and forms the border between Ohio and West Virginia. Here, the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains rise along its banks, and beneath that Appalachian soil lie the natural resources that have sustained the valley's economy: coal — and now, natural gas.

To people far away, who consume goods made with energy fueled by the Ohio Valley, coal and gas may be harmful agents of global warming.

But to people in Ohio coal country, a good life on the ground is paid for by what's underneath it.

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Some New England fishermen are pinning their hopes on a new kind of trawl net being used in the Gulf of Maine, one that scoops up abundant flatfish such as flounder and sole while avoiding species such as cod, which are in severe decline.

Americans waste a staggering amount of food. Instead of letting it rot and wreck the environment, some entrepreneurs want to put it to work feeding insects, and see the potential to revolutionize how we feed some of the livestock that provide us our meat.

Phil Taylor's enthusiasm for insects is infectious. The University of Colorado Boulder research ecologist beams as he weaves through a small greenhouse in rural Boulder County, Colorado. A room about the size of a shipping container sits inside.

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It's official - President-elect Trump has announced he intends to nominate ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson as his secretary of state. For more we're going to turn now to NPR's Michele Kelemen. Good morning, Michele.

Donald Trump has canceled a planned news conference for Thursday intended to address potential business conflicts he may face as president.

"The announcement will be in January," Trump transition adviser Sean Spicer told NPR.

As Bloomberg News, which broke the story, reports:

'Never Trust Magic': Tips From An IT Guy

Dec 12, 2016

I've worked my entire professional life with personal computers, and most of that time has been spent helping other people use them. I have been the voice on the other end of the 800 number who has to tell you that you should turn it off and turn it back on again. (And really, it's rather depressing that this actually does fix a great number of computer problems.) So I've learned a thing or two about the place that computers have in people's lives.

More than a dozen super tall residential towers are under construction. Many of the global ultra-rich who buy these apartments spend just a fraction of the year in them. Critics say they're paying a much lower tax rate than full-time New York residents. But defenders say these luxury buildings support good jobs and contribute to the local economy.

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The top-selling music artists of 2016 is not who you'd expect. If you looked at the most popular songs today, it's not Drake. He's runner-up.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "HOTLINE BLING")

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Erick Ask still remembers the first time he heard about the food ingredient that would become the focus of his professional life. He was in ninth grade.

"Mr. Elslip, my biology teacher, said to us one day, 'How many of you have eaten seaweed?' " Ask recalls. "And nobody raised their hand. And he says, 'Well, how many of you have eaten ice cream?' And we all raised our hands. And he says, 'Well, then you have eaten seaweed!' "

The head of the International Monetary Fund appeared in a Paris court Monday for the opening of her trial over alleged negligence during her time as France's finance minister nearly a decade ago.

Lagarde appeared before France's Court of Justice of the Republic for the first day of hearings, the BBC reported. The court handles cases related to alleged misconduct by government officials.

IKEA Launches New Marketing Campaign

Dec 12, 2016

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Beginning in 2017, United Airlines will offer cheaper airfares for budget-conscious travelers.

"Basic economy" will be lower priced than regular fares, allowing United to compete head to head with discount airlines such as Spirit, Frontier and Allegiant Air.

But there's a trade-off for passengers who will be giving up some of the few remaining perks of air travel, like putting a carry-on suitcase in the overhead bin or getting an assigned seat.

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