Business

5:53am

Thu July 11, 2013
Politics

Senators Express Concerns About Smithfield Foods Merger

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 4:52 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning. Pork was on the menu on Capitol Hill yesterday, but not the kind Congress produces. Lawmakers on the Senate Agriculture Committee were focused on the takeover of Smithfield Foods by a big Chinese company.

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5:00am

Thu July 11, 2013
Business

New Law Creates Business Opportunities In China

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 12:13 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In Chinese culture, filial piety is the virtual of respect for one's elders. In fact, a new Chinese law requires adults to provide financial and emotional support to their elderly relatives, which brings us to today's last word in business: outsourcing tender loving care.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

That's right. This new law is giving entrepreneurs a business opportunity. The Wall Street Journal reports that China's version of eBay now has listings that offer services like running errands or standing in line.

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5:00am

Thu July 11, 2013
Business

Wal-Mart Fumes Over D.C. Council Wage Vote

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 4:52 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Wal-Mart is changing its plans for the nation's capital. The company says it won't be building stores in Washington, D.C., after the city council passed a law requiring big-box retailers to pay what's known as a living wage.

Patrick Madden of member station WAMU has the story.

PATRICK MADDEN, BYLINE: Before the vote, Wal-Mart issued city lawmakers an ultimatum: kill the living wage bill, or it would pull the plug on three stores it has planned to build in the nation's capital.

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5:00am

Thu July 11, 2013
Business

Data From RealtyTrac Indicates Housing Market Is Improving

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 12:13 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with fewer foreclosures.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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4:50pm

Wed July 10, 2013
Business

Wal-Mart, Gap Join Bangladesh Factory Safety Group

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 5:29 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

Some of the country's biggest retailers have unveiled an initiative they say will improve conditions for workers on the other side of the world. The move by Wal-Mart, Target, and others is intended to boost safety in Bangladesh garment factories.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports the plan is a response to the devastating building collapse that killed more than 1,100 people in April.

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4:50pm

Wed July 10, 2013
Business

Lawmakers Express Concern About U.S.-Chinese Pork Deal

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 5:58 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

Members of the Senate Agriculture Committee had a lot of questions today about the takeover of Smithfield Foods. That's because a Chinese company has offered to buy America's largest pork processor. Both Democratic and Republican senators have expressed concerns about the $4.7 billion deal and its potential effects on U.S. food safety and security.

NPR's John Ydstie has been following the testimony today and joins us now. Hi, John.

JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Robert.

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4:28pm

Wed July 10, 2013
The Salt

The Science Of Twinkies: How Do They Last So Darned Long?

Originally published on Fri July 12, 2013 12:56 pm

Unlike the dodo that sits next to it on an NPR Science Desk shelf, this year-and-a-half-old Twinkie is still around — but that doesn't mean you want to eat it.
Heather Rousseau NPR

We have to confess: When we heard that Twinkies will have nearly double the shelf life, 45 days, when they return to stores next week, our first reaction was — days? Not years?

Urban legend has long deemed Twinkies the cockroaches of the snack food world, a treat that can survive for decades, what humanity would have left to eat come the apocalypse. The true shelf life — which used to be 26 days — seems somewhat less impressive by comparison.

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3:02pm

Wed July 10, 2013
The Two-Way

U.S. Job Market Seen As X Factor In Fed's Stimulus Plans

Traders work at the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday. Stocks rose in the moments after details of the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting were released today.
Richard Drew AP

The Federal Reserve must ensure the U.S. job market is in full health before it begins to ease its aggressive bond-purchasing program, its top officials said at the Fed's latest policy meeting. This afternoon, the central bank released the minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee meeting of June 18 and 19.

In that session, the officials cited a moderate pace of economic expansion, but said it was coupled with an unemployment rate that remains high.

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2:32pm

Wed July 10, 2013
Business

Smithfield Says Pork Won't Change, But Some Aren't Buying It

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 10:08 am

A Smithfield ham at a grocery store in Richardson, Texas, in 2011. Some senators expressed qualms Wednesday about the intentions of Shuanghui International Holdings, which is buying Smithfield Foods.
LM Otero AP

Americans will get the same ham slabs and bacon slices they have enjoyed for generations, even after Smithfield Foods becomes a Chinese subsidiary, Smithfield CEO Larry Pope told Congress on Wednesday.

"It will be the same old Smithfield, only better," Pope said at a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing.

But several senators weren't buying the bacon-will-be-unbroken story once Hong Kong-based Shuanghui International Holdings owns Smithfield.

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10:42am

Wed July 10, 2013
The Two-Way

Apple Conspired To Set E-Book Prices, Judge Rules

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 2:19 pm

A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Apple conspired with publishers to fix e-book prices.
Manu Fernandez AP

Apple Inc. "conspired to raise the retail price of e-books," a federal judge ruled Wednesday as a civil lawsuit brought by the Justice Department reached its conclusion.

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