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.
The unemployment rate ticked up to 7.3 percent in the Labor Department's latest jobs report. In the data, there was good news -- more jobs -- and bad news -- long-term unemployment. But beware: The report is a mess of bad data and false indicators and we shouldn’t rely on this months report. Also, new federal rules requiring health insurers to cover mental health and addiction could mean a flood of money to therapists, clinics and rehab centers. Plus, the airlines have been a little slow to get into the Big Data game. But it looks like they’re moving in that direction now. Welcome to being a totally captive audience at 30,000 feet. Finally, we talk to two of our regular guests about the week that was on Wall Street.
Twitter may be a household name -- but it's not used by everyone in every household. What happens when companies launch a product complex enough that they have to explain to potential users how to wade through it? Also, preliminary third-quarter data today suggest that retailers are stocking up on goods, but consumers aren’t buying them. And finally, the FDA says trans fats is officially bad, and that poses big challenge to makers of processed foods that depend on them for shelf-life, price and taste.
We often think of the stock market as the province of the machines. But in the Twitter IPO, the pivotal role is played by a human: the designated market maker, who will act as a conduit for all trading in Twitter shares. Marvel is diversifying its stable of superheroes with a new series featuring a teenage Muslim lead character. How much of a role do financial considerations play in creating a new superhero. Finally, Bart Chilton, known for quoting rock-and-roll lyrics in firebrand speeches, is leaving the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. His coming departure and other changes raise the specter that the regulator could soon be well short of its usual five commissioners.
Google launches its new video-conferencing advice and how-to service, called Google Helpouts. What calculation did Google make in deciding there’s money to be made connecting users to real people via video for advice? Also, the Department of Justice is talking with American Airlines and US Airways about possibly lifting their anti-trust action against the airlines’ merger if they make concessions on slots at airports. And finally, the case of one 300-pound NFL player bullying another raises the question of why so many workplaces of all kinds tolerate bullying and hazing in their work forces.
The hedge fund SAC has plead guilty to insider trading. The government has drawn a line in the sand when it comes to trading in material non-public information, but where exactly is that line drawn? Kellogg's slashed 7 percent of its workforce, and it planning to market more to older consumers, not kids. Finally, the tentative takeover offer from BlackBerry’s largest shareholder for the company has collapsed. Instead of purchasing BlackBerry and taking it private, Fairfax Financial Holdings, and an unnamed group of institutional investors will invest $1 billion in the struggling company.
A boost to food stamps funding leftover from the government’s 2009 stimulus package is expiring. How will families, grocery stores, and corporate America feel the pain? The Container Store’s share price doubled shortly after its IPO this morning. Some might think that high-end organizing is a sign the economy is doing well. And Marketplace's Queena Kim goes on a mission to find out what the Google Barge is all about … or not.