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Marketplace is produced and distributed by American Public Media (APM), in association with the University of Southern California. The programs focus on the latest business news both nationally and internationally, the global economy, and wider events linked to the financial markets. The only national daily business news program originating from the West Coast, Marketplace  is noted for its timely, relevant and accessible coverage of business, economics and personal finance.

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Euro's presence still looms large for many Greeks

2 hours ago

(Markets Edition) One year ago, a tropical storm called Harvey formed and eventually morphed into Hurricane Harvey, making a devastating impact on Texas. Federal forecasters say this year's edition of hurricane season probably won't bring another Harvey-like storm, but Marketplace's Reema Khrais told us how vulnerable areas are applying lessons they learned from Harvey's appearance. Then, while e-cigarettes have U.S. regulators concerned, British authorities are actually focusing on the benefits of vaping, as the BBC's Anu Anand told us more.

The euro is a mixed blessing for Greece

3 hours ago

In his flower shop beneath the parliament building in central Athens, Spiros Kontogiannis fumed over the euro, which he blames for Greece’s economic misfortune and the loss of control over its own affairs. By adopting the single currency, he said, Greece has fallen humiliatingly under foreign domination.

“As a Greek citizen, I feel ashamed — and have done so since the crisis began — because our politicians now take their instructions from abroad. And our economy has suffered as a result” he said.

Examining the toxic history of flame retardants

5 hours ago

How would you feel knowing that perhaps 97 percent of Americans are walking around with a dangerous toxin linked to cancer in their blood? We’re specifically talking about flame retardants. According to an article in The Nation, flame retardants of varying kinds surround us and are a practically unavoidable part of our lives. 

(U.S. Edition) The opioid epidemic is getting more attention from the Trump administration, with the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Justice Department asking pharmaceutical companies to dial back production of some of the most abused prescription painkillers. Marketplace's Justin Ho tells us more. Also, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is lending a hand to struggling dairies in the form of a $50 million purchase of milk, which is about 12- to 15-million gallons. The milk will get to people through soup kitchens and food banks.

McDonald’s goes posh with London pop up

6 hours ago

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … A group of British lawmakers say the country’s national health service should promote e-cigarettes as a way of helping people stop smoking. But the World Health Organization is against the promotion of vaping. We’ll explore the evidence on both sides of the $15 billion dollar e-cigarette industry. Then, well-known for its burgers and fries, McDonald’s has become a staple of the fast-food industry around the world.

Engagement is a key measure of health for social media platforms. It's measureed not only by how much time users spend there, but also how often they upload, share, comment and "like." Investors want to know that these platforms are integrated into users' lives so that advertising revenue can continue to grow. But some platforms, including Snapchat and Facebook, are seeing engagement decline. Jessi Hempel, a senior writer for Wired magazine, points to a gradual boundary setting with social media that she thinks a lot of people have been doing, intentionally or not. (08/17/18)

Engagement is a key measure of health for social media platforms. It's measured not only in how much time users spend there, but also how often they upload, share, comment, and "like." Investors want to know that these platforms are integrated into users' lives so that ad revenue can grow. Right now some platforms, including Snapchat and Facebook, are seeing engagement decline. Jessi Hempel is a senior writer for Wired magazine. She sees lots of people gradually setting boundaries with social media, intentionally or not.

Midterms: Is it the economy, stupid?

18 hours ago

You may have heard this phrase: "It’s the economy, stupid. ” And it usually is. Parties in power tend to do better when the economy is humming along, and voters are more likely to give them the boot when the economy’s not doing so hot. With low unemployment, a booming stock market and strong growth, the GOP should be set for the midterms, right? This time around, maybe not.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

The power of a voice in transition

18 hours ago

Whether it’s in politics, or a hit television show, or through writing, a record number of transgender Americans are making their voices heard right now. Thomas Page McBee is an author and a journalist who, in the midst of his writing career, transitioned at 30 years old. He'd had a couple of jobs and therefore gained the perspective of the androgynous co-worker and the male boss.

Steel tariffs add upward pressure to HVAC costs

20 hours ago

Summer in Texas is hot. Real hot. And temperatures are rising even higher in recent years. That means if you don’t have air conditioning in June, July and August, it’s almost unbearable. Summer is also the worst time to replace a failing HVAC system because installation companies know they hold the upper hand and can charge a premium. But in today's climate, there are other things to consider. Some HVAC makers have increased prices in response to U.S. tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. 

Is it the economy, stupid?

21 hours ago

Republicans are betting on the strong economy to sway voters in November’s elections, but will that work? This time around, maybe not. Also on today's show: A dispatch from Turkey, where Syrian refugees-turned-entrepreneurs are working to stay afloat in their new country. Plus, we talk with author and journalist Thomas Page McBee about navigating the power of voice as a trans man in the workplace. (08/16/18)

(Markets Edition) Retail goliath Walmart enjoyed rising profits into the early part of summer, and it also reported a 40 percent boost in its online sales. But it’s also reporting rising costs, and Marketplace’s Dan Gorenstein lets us know if that means the prices at Walmart are going to go up as well. Also, economist Diane Swonk lets us know if the possibly cresting housing market is a good thing, depending on where you live.

Prices may be headed up at Walmart and beyond

Aug 16, 2018

Retail giant Walmart is faced with the rising cost of raw materials, labor, trucking and the possibility of a trade war. All of that means consumers may soon see price hikes. If Walmart takes the leap, other retailers are likely to follow.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

Facial scan technology makes debut in airports

Aug 16, 2018

The line to board one of British Airways’ evening flights to London from Orlando International Airport was long. Nearly 250 passengers — some retirees, business people and families who had visited amusement parks — inched toward what looked like a futuristic subway turnstile, following a gate attendant’s instructions to “step on the yellow footprint and just look directly at the camera for me."  

(U.S. Edition) China is sending a delegation to Washington later this month to see if there's a way both countries can move on from this battle of dueling tariffs. Marketplace's China correspondent Jennifer Pak joined us to shed more light on what this means. Also, it's the time of year when shipping picks up for holiday-themed goods, which then start filling up the border and ports. The aforementioned tariffs become a factor as well, as Mitchell Hartman reports. Then, we check in on Greece, which is approaching the day it leaves the bailout program it's been in for the last eight years.

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Politicians and corporations are continuing to point fingers about who is responsible for a bridge collapse this week in Italy. Now, the government is threatening to take over the nation’s motorways. Then, in a bid to increase levels of local homeownership in New Zealand, the country’s government has passed legislation restricting foreigners from buying residential property after the prime minister blamed foreign speculators for driving up home prices.

This summer, Marketplace Tech is exploring tech in movies. Today, we’re looking at the Bruce Willis classic “Armageddon,” which was the highest-grossing film of 1998. That was 20 years ago, and fans still love the movie today. Willis’ character, Harry Stamper, is a "deep core" oil driller sent into space to drill a hole and drop a bomb in an asteroid that is hurtling toward Earth. We meet Harry on an offshore oil rig, managing a surly crew, with oil flying everywhere.

This summer, Marketplace Tech is exploring tech in movies. Today, we’re looking at the Bruce Willis classic “Armageddon,” which was the highest-grossing film of 1998. Willis’ character, Harry Stamper, is a "deep core" oil driller sent into space to drill a hole and drop a bomb in an asteroid hurtling toward Earth. We meet Harry on an offshore oil rig, managing a surly crew, with oil flying everywhere. It's a depiction of oil-drilling life that has stuck with the public, but has very little to do with reality.

Russian officials were in Turkey on Tuesday, talking with the government there about possible solutions for Turkey’s currency crisis. Both countries are also facing U.S. sanctions, so one idea they floated: Stick to their own national currencies for trade and avoid using the dollar at all. On top of that, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov echoed statements from President Vladimir Putin that the United States is “abusing” its role as a global reserve currency. 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

A guide to the corporate board

Aug 15, 2018

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is in some hot water with regulators. That tweet he tossed off last week — when he went public about possibly taking Tesla private and having the funding already lined up — unleashed a raft of lawsuits. And members of Tesla’s board of directors are reportedly lawyering up. What do they have to worry about? Just about everything Musk does that could hurt shareholders. It comes with the territory.  

Alton Lane CEO doesn't want shopping to feel like shopping

Aug 15, 2018

Today's retail landscape is full of companies trying to find a way to keep customers coming to brick-and-mortar stores, but Colin Hunter's company is going after customers who may not be all that interested in shopping in the first place. Hunter is the CEO and co-founder men's clothing retailer Alton Lane, which uses data, technology and the idea that clothes shopping isn't most men's idea of a good time in order to find an edge. Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal spoke to Hunter about his company. The following is an edited transcript of their conversation. 

What if we just do MAFTA and CAFTA instead?

Aug 15, 2018

It's been a year since the United States started NAFTA renegotiations with Canada and Mexico. Since then, Mexico has elected a new president and the U.S. has engaged in several controversial trade maneuvers. So are we any closer to signing a new deal? We'll catch you up. Also on today's show: We're hearing a lot from Elon Musk these days but what’s happening with Tesla and its board? Plus, another installment of our series Corner Office. This time we talk to Colin Hunter, co-founder and CEO of Alton Lane, about the future of men’s fashion retail.

Subscription box services may be the big apparel movement right now, but tech and data are allowing at least one company to go in a very different direction: custom tailoring. Colin Hunter is the CEO and co-founder of high-end men's fashion company Alton Lane, and his goal is to make that retail experience personal — like, really personal. His company uses body scanners to get your body measurements in a matter of seconds, which are then sent to fabric makers who construct garments to order (which, of course, is not cheap).

Monday, Aug. 20, is Bailout Exit Day for Greece. The country’s prime minister has described Greece’s exit from a long bailout program as a moment of liberation. “Greece is regaining its political and economic independence,” Alexis Tsipras said, as he predicted a rosy future for the eurozone’s most heavily-indebted member state.     

Not all his fellow citizens are so optimistic.

The way credit scores are calculated is changing

Aug 15, 2018

A report from the New York Federal Reserve this week finds that the big reporting agencies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — have started excluding certain items that used to be considered negative dings on our credit.

(Markets Edition) The stock market experienced a down day today. In addition to drops in the Dow and S&P, Europe and Asia markets also fell. We talked with Susan Schmidt, senior portfolio manager at Westwood Holdings, who mentioned speculation that the downward trend in Asia might have been due to some unfortunate earnings reports. Also, the online job-finding company Indeed put together a list that outlines which cities have the ideal blend of higher pay and decent cost-of-living.

Where will your paycheck go the furthest?

Aug 15, 2018 has crunched the numbers on salary and cost of living in 185 metro areas and come up with a list of cities where your salary will go the furthest. The list also indicates where economic and job opportunities will likely be strongest going forward. The top cities are Duluth, Minnesota; Wilmington, North Carolina; Lubbock, Texas; and San Antonio, Texas. See which other towns made the grade.

Major department stores report their earnings this week, starting with Macy’s on Wednesday, followed by Nordstrom and J.C. Penney on Thursday. After a retail slump and slide over many quarters, Americans are coming back to shopping, and the numbers show stores are enjoying the trend.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

(U.S. Edition) The Turkish lira rebounded again today, but there's been no cooldown in the ongoing feud between Turkey and the U.S. About a week after the U.S. raised tariffs on Turkish metals, Turkey followed suit with a tariff hike of its own on many items from the U.S. It's the latest move in this economic tug-of-war between the two countries, and we speak to the BBC's Turkey correspondent to hear about next steps. Also, we got a reading on retail sales that should be up, and we talk to Marketplace's Erika Beras for more.

Are we witnessing the renaissance of retail stores?

Aug 15, 2018

Your shopping experience might now include flutes of champagne, meticulously designed décor, and "robot" hands spraying you with fragrances.