Business

3:29pm

Fri November 9, 2012
World

To Combat Sanctions, Iran Buys Up Gold

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 12:17 pm

Iranian women look at a jewelry shop display in Tehran, Iran, in 2010. Iran now appears to be stockpiling gold in an attempt to stabilize its economy, which has been hit hard by Western sanctions.
Atta Lenare AFP/Getty Images

Iran is stockpiling gold. That's the way David Cohen sees it. He's undersecretary of the Treasury, and the Treasury's point man for the banking sanctions the U.S. has imposed on Iran.

"Iran is attempting to hoard gold, both by acquiring it and by preventing the export of gold from Iran, in a somewhat desperate attempt to try and defend the value of its currency," Cohen says.

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6:22am

Fri November 9, 2012
Planet Money

The Secret Genius Of Taylor Swift

Originally published on Mon November 12, 2012 10:14 am

Taylor Swift's fourth studio album, Red, sold 1.2 million copies in its first week, the highest first-week sales total in a decade.
Courtesy of the artist

Taylor Swift's new album, Red, sold more 1.2 million copies in its first week — the highest first-week sales total for an album in over a decade. She did it partly by answering a surprisingly complicated question: What's the best way to sell an album?

There are so many ways to release your music these days. You can sell it at Amazon, iTunes, Wal-Mart, and Starbucks. You can release it to streaming sites like Spotify. You can go on tour.

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4:53am

Fri November 9, 2012
Economy

CBO: 'Fiscal Cliff' Could Put U.S. Back In Recession

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 12:46 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Speaker Boehner also said he wants to work with the president to keep them from going over the fiscal cliff - higher taxes and spending cuts that take effect at the end of the year. The Congressional Budget Office warns of a new recession if Congress doesn't make changes. NPR's Scott Horsley has our daily look at the bottom line.

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4:46am

Fri November 9, 2012
Business

Sandy's Effects 'Staggering' To New York's Economy

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 12:46 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, also held a press conference yesterday, and gave a warning that Sandy could end up costing his state $33 billion in economic damage, which could worsen the state's already-perilous fiscal situation.

NPR's Jim Zarroli reports.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: Cuomo said the initial estimates are that the storm will cost the region $50 billion in lost economic activity and infrastructure damage. And he said two-thirds of that will be borne by New York.

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4:28am

Fri November 9, 2012
Business

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 12:46 pm

The fragrance company Demeter has introduced a new sushi scent. The company's website says it offers a whiff of seaweed and rice with a lemon-ginger essence. But it isn't fishy.

4:28am

Fri November 9, 2012
Business

Business News

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 12:46 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with an attempt to shorten gas lines.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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3:21am

Fri November 9, 2012
Business

Car Dealers Sue Tesla, Citing State Franchise Laws

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 12:46 pm

A Tesla Motors showroom in San Jose, Calif. Car dealers in New York and Massachusetts have filed a lawsuit that seeks to block Tesla from selling its vehicles in those states.
Paul Sakuma AP

Tesla Motors usually makes headlines for its technology. Its new Model S is the first entirely electric vehicle to be named car of the year by Automobile Magazine.

Friday's news is less flattering: A judge in New York will take up a lawsuit against the company about how Tesla sells its cars.

When Mark Seeger bought a Tesla in Seattle, he was actually just looking for a pair of shoes.

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5:25pm

Thu November 8, 2012
The Two-Way

CBO Warns Again: Ignoring Fiscal Cliff Could Result In Recession

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 6:57 pm

The so-called fiscal cliff is a double-edged sword, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says in a new report issued today.

Why? Ignoring the huge tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect at the beginning of the year "will probably cause the economy to fall back into a recession."

But: "They will make the economy stronger later in the decade and beyond."

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4:54pm

Thu November 8, 2012
Economy

Corn Belt Farmland: The Newest Real Estate Bubble?

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 6:02 pm

This field is part of a 160-acre tract in Saline County, Mo., that sold for $10,700 per acre in February — double what it would have gone for five years ago.
Abby Fentress Swanson Harvest Public Media

Howard Audsley has been driving through Missouri for the past 30 years to assess the value of farmland. Barreling down the flat roads of Saline County on a recent day, he stopped his truck at a 160-acre tract of newly tilled black land. The land sold in February for $10,700 per acre, double what it would have gone for five years ago.

Heading out into the field, Audsley picked up a clod of the dirt that makes this pocket of land some of the priciest in the state.

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4:41pm

Thu November 8, 2012
The Salt

You Can Thank A Whey Refinery For That Protein Smoothie

Originally published on Fri November 9, 2012 9:52 am

Tim Opper, of Cabot Cheese, inspects equipment that separates whey protein from sugar in the company's whey processing plant.
Dan Charles NPR

If you've ever checked the ingredient list on a PowerBar or a high-protein smoothie, you probably have stumbled across these words: "Whey protein concentrate." You'll find it in a growing number of prepared foods.

This mysterious ingredient is derived from one of the oldest of human foods — milk. But capturing it requires huge factories that look more like oil refineries than farms.

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