Business

8:47am

Tue March 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Housing Rebound Continues: Starts Rose 0.8 Percent In February

A home under construction in Atlanta late last year. The housing sector is now one of the economy's bright spots.
Erik S. Lesser EPA /LANDOV

Construction was begun on 0.8 percent more homes in February than in January, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development say. Their report is another in a series of signs in recent months that the housing sector's rebound continues.

The number of "housing starts" was up 27.7 percent from February 2012.

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5:15am

Tue March 19, 2013
Business

2 Former CalPERS Officials Indicted For Fraud

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 10:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with charges of pension fraud.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: A federal grand jury has indicted the former CEO of the California Public Employees' Retirement System.

NPR's Sonari Glinton has more on the bribery and influence-peddling case.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: Let's start with the characters. There's Calpers - or the California Public Employees Retirement Systems. As pensions systems, go you can't get bigger.

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4:43am

Tue March 19, 2013
Business

E.U. Tax Proposal On Cypriot Bank Deposits Riles Russia

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 10:42 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is expressing outrage over a possible new tax in Cyprus. That Mediterranean island is far Moscow but holds billions in Russian money. It's the topic of today's Bottom-line in Business. At the heart of the uproar is a bailout of the banking system in Cyprus. In a first, the European Union is proposing to partly pay for the bailout with a tax on depositors' money.

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4:43am

Tue March 19, 2013
Business

Visual Effects Firms Miss Out On A Film's Success

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 5:20 pm

Guillaume Rocheron, Bill Westenhofer, Erik-Jan De Boer and Donald R. Elliott at the 85th Annual Academy Awards in February. Rhythm & Hues Studios, the company that produced the effects for winning film Life of Pi, recently declared bankruptcy.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Hollywood studios are demanding more and more visual effects to make blockbuster films. But the artists who create this movie magic are protesting that they and their entire industry are in deep financial trouble. Even the most celebrated visual-effects companies face the risk of going under, and there are calls to revamp the way they do business.

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4:43am

Tue March 19, 2013
Business

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 10:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Our last word in business today is filial piety.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

That's the ancient Chinese ethic of young people showing care and respect to their parents and older relatives. Now it's the law in China. Starting this summer, if kids don't pay enough attention to their folks, mom and dad can sue.

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7:12pm

Mon March 18, 2013
All Tech Considered

CEO Of Electronic Arts, World's Third-Largest Gaming Company, Resigns

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 7:14 pm

Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello, seen here speaking at the E3 Expo in 2010, is stepping down, the company announced Monday.
Michal Czerwonka Getty Images

Electronic Arts, the world's third-largest video game company, announced Monday that CEO John Riccitiello would be stepping down.

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4:15pm

Mon March 18, 2013
Business

Why The Crisis In Cyprus May End Up Hurting You Too

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 12:28 pm

Cypriots protest an EU bailout deal outside the parliament in Nicosia on Monday. A proposed bailout deal would slap a levy on all Cypriot bank savings.
Patrick Baz AFP/Getty Images

Ask Americans to point out Cyprus, and most would have to spin a globe several times before noticing the small island nation, east of Greece and south of Turkey.

But whether or not you have ever given a thought to the 1.1 million people living there under the warm Mediterranean sun, Cyprus might send a chill up your spine this week.

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4:00pm

Mon March 18, 2013
Intelligence Squared U.S.

Does America Need A Strong Dollar Policy?

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 4:34 pm

(From left) John Taylor, Frederic Mishkin, James Grant and Steve Forbes traded arguments during the latest Intelligence Squared U.S. debate.
Samuel LaHoz
  • Listen To The Full Audio Of The Debate
  • Listen To The Broadcast Version Of The Debate

Is a strong U.S. dollar a good thing, or is it overrated as a policy goal?

Some argue that a policy aimed at keeping the dollar strong would hurt U.S. economic growth because it would make American goods and services more expensive, lessening global demand for them. Others say having a weak and unstable unit as the basis of the economy makes commerce harder and creates financial bubbles that then burst disastrously.

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2:44pm

Mon March 18, 2013
Media

As Consumers Jump Ship, News Outlets Shift Priorities

Americans are abandoning their long-trusted news outlets in high numbers. According to a Pew Research Center report, 31 percent of Americans say they have deserted a particular news outlet because it no longer provides the information they want.

12:35pm

Mon March 18, 2013
Planet Money

Where The Bank Really Keeps Your Money

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 10:37 am

People queue to use an ATM outside of a Laiki Bank branch in Larnaca, Cyprus, on Saturday. Many rushed to cooperative banks after learning that the terms of a bailout deal with international lenders includes a one-time levy on bank deposits.
Petros Karadjias AP

Cyprus has about as many residents as the Bronx. All Cypriot banks combined are smaller than the 30th-largest U.S. bank. So why is the country's financial system front-page news today?

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