MONTAGNE: That's the indicator Fed Chief Ben Bernanke wants to see. Bernanke told a conference of economists last night that despite data pointing to a recovery, many people still feel stressed. He said the economic well-being of Americans is the Fed's ultimate objective - that is, the sense that things are going well.
To the average consumer, car insurance can seem pretty arbitrary. What you get charged often depends more on where you drive than how you drive.
John Egan of InsuranceQuotes.com says it's very often about location, location, location. Two people, he says, can live in two different zip codes in the same city "and pay a substantially different amount of money, depending on exactly where [they] live in your community."
"After years maintaining innocence," as Nashville Public Radio says, Gibson Guitar Corp. has agreed to pay a $300,000 penalty, donate $50,000 to a conservation fund and give up its claims to ebony and rosewood worth nearly $262,000 to avoid being criminally prosecuted for importing exotic woods.
Originally published on Mon October 15, 2012 11:09 am
Credit momovieman / Flickr.com
To lovers of the world's most odoriferous fruit, something doesn't smell right in Thailand's durian country, where a fruit breeder with the Horticulture Research Institute is in the midst of creating a line of durian varieties that lacks what some say is the most intriguing aspect of this large and spiky, creamy-fleshed tree fruit — its smell.
Political and economic changes in Myanmar have fueled a wave of labor unrest in the country also known as Burma. Myanmar is in the very early stages of industrial development and has some of the lowest wages in the world. Wages are unlikely to reach levels seen elsewhere in the region anytime soon.
Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 1:51 pm
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And today's last word in business is extreme buzz.
If your regular coffee is not strong enough to jolt you awake in the morning, maybe you'll be interested in a cup of Death Wish, which is our last word in business.
Death Wish is the name of a coffee roaster in upstate New York. It claims to sell the strongest coffee in the world: 200 percent more caffeine than your typical coffee shop brew, according to the website, which also calls Starbuck's "sissy coffee."
NPR's business news starts with an airline refund.
Refunds are starting to arrive in the bank accounts of Southwest Airlines' customers who were billed multiple times for promotional fares booked on Friday. Some customers paid for their discounted air travel as many as 20 times, according to the Associated Press. The company blamed the problem on a computer glitch.
A lot is at stake in the current election, but no matter who wins, the victor will stay committed to policies that cripple the middle class. That's according to Pulitzer Prize-winning reporters Donald Barlett and James Steele, who've been covering the middle class for decades.
In their new book, The Betrayal of the American Dream, Barlett and Steele criticize a government obsessed with free trade and indifferent toward companies that outsource jobs.
Ninety-eight percent of medal winners that year wore the company's LZR Racer, a zip-sealed full-body suit that carried many top athletes — including Michael Phelps — to gold.
But after those games, the sport's international governing body changed the rules to outlaw the LZR by banning zippers and restricting mens' suit coverage from the navel to the knees. So Speedo went back to the drawing board and spent years developing what's now known as the Fastskin3 system.