Every weekday on Marketplace, Kai Ryssdal hosts a lively and unexpected exploration of the day’s business and economic news from Wall Street to your wallet.
Airing on Monday, June 15, 2015: As more schools invest in technology, a new sort of digital divide has emerged. Kids may have access to the internet and the latest devices in class, but almost a third of families don't have broadband access at home. Marketplace's Amy Scott returns to Oyler School in Cincinnati, where kids are getting a taste of what they've been missing. Next: if you’ve watched “The Sopranos,” you’ve seen the Pulaski Skyway in the opening credits. The New Jersey bridge, the country's first "superhighway," is falling apart. And when a $1.2 billion rehab is complete, the skyway will still be obsolete. As part of our series "Weak Link," we explore.
Airing on Friday, June 12, 2015: The huge transformers that make high-voltage transmission lines possible are expensive, custom-built, not made in America and vulnerable to terrorism, vandalism and nature. So a group of utilities is creating a strategic transformer reserve. Next: last week's huge federal hack has cast light on an unspoken truth about cybersecurity: security companies — in fact all companies — have decided that cyber crime is now a fact of life. You can’t stop it, so all you can really do is mitigate. What does that mean for corporations trying to secure their data, and how does it play out in the security business? We explore.
Airing on Thursday, June 11, 2015: Retail sales numbers out today look encouraging, but with a background of still-sluggish growth, there are good reasons to be skeptical. How good an indicator of America’s economic state are these numbers? We explore. Next: Marketplace is spending some time this week looking at the issue of affordable housing through the lens of Marin County, a region just north of San Francisco where housing is unaffordable for many. Marin resident George Lucas of Star Wars fame just recently announced plans to use $100 million of his own funds to build a couple hundred units of aimed at lower-income residents on a piece of land he owns called Grady Ranch. Yesterday we heard from folks who say it's exactly what Marin needs. But not everyone has embraced the idea. Marketplace's Krissy Clark from our Wealth & Poverty desk spent some time with those who oppose the plan.
Airing on Wednesday, June 10, 2015: Big Pharma is the biggest lobbying force on the Trans-Pacific Partnership. We explore whether opening up trade will drive prices down or allow pharmaceutical companies to raise costs instead. Next: Marin County in California has some of the nation's most expensive real estate. That's why some residents are excited about affordable housing projects like Toussin Senior Apartments. But getting the 13-unit complex built took 19 funding sources, each with its own rules. From Marketplace's Wealth & Poverty desk, Krissy Clark has the story.
Airing on June, 9, 2015: Small telecoms companies are merging. But they’re really only creating other relatively small telecom companies. They can’t really compete with the big guys. So why merge at all? We explore. Next: California's mandatory water cuts have kicked in, which means utilities are passing rules about what Californians can and can't do. In a state with nearly 40 million people, that's creating some winning and losing industries. Today we look at one of the winners. KQED's Lauren Sommer has the story.
Airing on Monday, May 8, 2015: Turns out green cards are for sale. For just a half-million dollars, well-off foreigners can jump to the head of a very long line of people who want to move to the U.S. That half million must be invested in a job-creating project here, so many real estate developers are taking advantage of this federal program. As Julie Satow reports, most of those applying for green cards are from China. Next: Lufthansa’s announcement that it will impose a surcharge on tickets bought through price-comparing sites like Travelocity has the travel industry in a tizzy. The surcharge aims to increase Lufthansa's profitability, but it might also cost it travelers.