A little show about big ideas. From the people who make Planet Money, The Indicator helps you make sense of what’s happening today. It’s a quick hit of insight into work, business, the economy, and everything else. Listen weekday afternoons.
Here's the Latest Episode from The Indicator from Planet Money:
As Democrats, Republicans and the President fight about how much support to give laid-off workers during the pandemic, we take the temperature of this up-and-down economy.
The brutal unemployment situation in the US today is making a lot of people think again about labor unions. Which had their first major victory after a 1936 strike.
Faced with the prospect of paying for an expensive drug to treat his daughter, this dad found a nearly identical product for thousands of dollars less. But the insurance company wouldn't let him.
We answer two questions today: Why is American internet so bad? And why was the unemployment benefit extension set at $600?
How a theater company in Philadelphia is reacting to the existential threat posed by the coronavirus.
The Black Lives Matter demonstrations brought people together to protest injustice. But alongside the protests came riots, at a great cost to some Black-owned businesses.
The biggest, wealthiest nations in the world are in a race to produce a coronavirus vaccine. It's obviously in a country's interest to win that race and protect its citizens. It's also in its interest to share.
This quarter's Gross Domestic Product numbers could be the worst on record. But what do they mean, exactly?
Most of the U.S. economy is in crisis: Unemployment and bankruptcies are skyrocketing, and millions aren't paying rent. But home sales are skyrocketing, too. In fact, they're rising at a record pace.
The use of technologies that help office workers do their work remotely could have unanticipated, long-lasting effects for low-skilled workers too.
Nearly one in five U.S. workers is on unemployment benefits. And most of them are about to see their checks cut in half, as Congress' expanded benefits expire this month.
The three main drivers behind the decline in worker power.
Restaurants are going out of business in droves. But some are battling hard to keep their doors open.
What's the garbage situation? How can we invest in Black-owned businesses? And what's the state of the gig economy? Your questions, answered.
The city of Camden, New Jersey is cited as an example of how cities can change their approach to policing. But the story of Camden and its cops isn't a simple one.
Unless Congress acts, unemployment benefit enhancements will expire. And that could have big effects on the economy.
Gary Cohn was President Trump's economic advisor, and a prime mover behind the $2 trillion tax cut of 2017. We talk to him about the state of the economy.
The economics profession has a serious inclusion problem, and that matters for how all of us understand the economy.
One in five American households doesn't have enough food to eat. And the program that's supposed to help is about to shrink.
Because of the global economic slowdown, there's a glut of oil on the market right now. And companies are coming up with creative ways to store it.
Reentering the world and the workforce after you've been in prison is hard enough at the best of times. The coronavirus pandemic has made it a whole lot harder.
Molly Moon's Homemade Ice Cream in Seattle has been on the same economic and political roller coaster ride many small businesses have. Now they're trying to open back up, survive and grow.
Rural hospitals in Texas are scrambling for equipment and staff to combat the surge in coronavirus cases.
Black-owned financial institutions are a shrinking part of the U.S. financial system. We look at what that means for America's entrenched racial disparities.
Live music events are like micro-economies that support hundreds of small businesses. Coronavirus is hammering them.
The way organizations and governments respond to disasters often have hidden consequences; sometimes those consequences can be fatal.
The BLS jobs report for June was better than expected, but showed the U.S. economy is still suffering badly from coronavirus.
Americans owe about $1.5 trillion in student debt. But who actually owns those loans? One borrower goes looking for an answer—and uncovers a multi-billion dollar shadow market.
On the Spanish Flu, housing prices, and the resilience of Australia's economy. Indicator listener questions, answered.
Incarcerated Americans make goods for American companies, and get paid next to nothing for their labor.
Sadie Alexander was the first African-American to earn a PhD in economics. We think her contributions deserve another look.
Many businesses have been negatively affected by the pandemic. But some companies that have borrowed a lot of money are manipulating their numbers, to avoid breaking their debt agreements.
How the Federal Reserve manages the economy can have an outsize effect on Black workers. Here's how to make sure it doesn't leave them behind again.
Governments and drug companies agree: We need to develop a vaccine for COVID-19. But their motives for developing a vaccine are different. And that will have a big effect on the vaccine's price.
How a psychologist who learned how to play high stakes poker as a way to study human behavior learned a lot about risk management, mendacity and the markets.
Daymond John, founder of the iconic brand FUBU and investor on the reality show Shark Tank, talked to us about how he got his start and maintained his lead in the cutthroat world of fashion apparel.
Williston, North Dakota doubled in size during the shale oil boom a decade ago. Now oil prices have fallen and the town's facing hard times.
Not all countries approached the COVID-19 economic crisis the way the U.S. did. How different strategies on unemployment had radically different outcomes.
Police fines and fees have helped to fill city coffers, but they've done serious damage to community relations.
Five "high-frequency" indicators help us track the health of the U.S. economy
The companies that lead the field in surveillance technology are turning against it.
Why a groundbreaking paper by Lisa Cook on the effects of racist violence took ten years to get published.
Contact tracing is one of the most effective ways to contain a pandemic and dates back to the 1300s. But the modern versions are coming at a real cost.
Big American cities might never look the same again, post coronavirus. And that could be the making of them.
Minnesota is often touted as one of the best places to live in the U.S. — it has the numbers to prove it. And yet, the state has some of the worst racial disparities of any state in the country.
How well a family can endure a spell of unemployment depends on how much of a buffer it has to fall back on. And there are big racial and ethnic disparities in how big those buffers are.
Companies all over the world are jockeying for position in the lucrative COVID-19 antibody testing market, but are quality standards getting lost in the shuffle?
There appears to be a relationship between police unionization and the number of people killed by officers.
When the coronavirus hit, economists predicted a tsunami of bankruptcies. But that hasn't happened.
The coronavirus pandemic has been called "the great equalizer." But in fact, COVID-19 has disproportionately affected African Americans in all kinds of ways.
The Federal Reserve's Beige Book provides anecdotes from various parts of the economy. This month's edition illustrates the pain being suffered by pig farmers.
Mellisa Dell, this year's John Bates Clark Medal winner, explains the relationship between security, prosperity and the rule of law.
Many of us are working from home for now. Some could be destined to do it forever.
The landlord-tenant relationship is often a tense one and it's becoming a national problem.
The stock market has recovered more than half the ground lost when it crashed nearly 34 percent starting in late February. But the economy hasn't recovered. Why is there such a stark disconnect?
Hospitals lost millions of dollars preparing for a surge of COVID-19 patients. Some were swamped, but others only saw a handful of coronavirus cases. Now many are struggling to survive.
Melissa Dell, winner of the John Bates Clark Medal for economics, on why poverty and insecurity are so persistent in certain parts of the world.
Public transit systems are vital to cities. Many have been shut down or slowed during the pandemic. Now city administrators have to figure out how to reopen them.
Many banks have changed the way they work, as they hurry to get billions in CARES Act cash to small businesses.
State unemployment offices have been slammed, as 36 million Americans have lost their jobs. And now individuals and the U.S. economy are depending on these often underfunded operations to step up.
Mixed martial arts is the first major spectator sport in the U.S. to host live events since the coronavirus lockdown. Other sports are watching to see whether MMA could point the way.
The working conditions on many farms mean that agricultural laborers are at high risk of getting COVID-19. That poses a real threat to those workers and to the country's food supply.
Companies hammered by the economic collapse due to the coronavirus pandemic are being forced to make a hard choice: lay staff off or cut their pay.
The U.S. economy depends on consumer demand. And demand is way down because of the coronavirus pandemic. What happens if it doesn't come back?
The jobs report for this month was nightmarish. But as bad as it was, it hid some even worse news about the employment situation.
California Governor Gavin Newsom talks with Stacey Vanek Smith about his plans to reopen the fifth largest economy in the world.
If the pandemic goes on much longer, or its aftereffects linger, face masks will inevitably become a fashion accessory.
Italy was one of the countries hardest hit by coronavirus, and was one of the first to shut down its economy. Now it's reopening. But not everyone's happy about it.
As businesses make plans to reopen their workplaces, we're probably going to find that these spaces will look very different than before.
We're all thinking about what the world might look like after this pandemic. Several years ago, Justin Marks had a vision of how things might be, in his TV show, Counterpart.
Essential workers put themselves at risk of infection every day to keep the economy running. But many aren't well protected or compensated for the dangerous work they do.
Small and medium size enterprises tend not to have much of a cash cushion, so most are desperate to get back to work. But many are finding that reopening after a pandemic is a messy business.
Globalization and urbanization historically have made the global economy more productive and efficient — and also more vulnerable to pandemics. But now they can be forces for good in the fight against disease.
The COVID-19 pandemic is driving thousands of people and businesses into bankruptcy.
Much has been made of the unprecedented legislation passed by Congress in its attempt to curtail the economic damage of COVID-19. But what about the Federal Reserve?
Supermarket shelves are empty, and food banks around the country are besieged. So why are farmers dumping, destroying and giving away food?
We've had plenty of warnings over the years that we weren't ready for a pandemic. Today on the show: the psychology and economics of why.
The price of a barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell below zero. In other words, suppliers were paying people to take it off their hands. How did that happen? And what does it mean?
We're spending more time at home, and more time with technology — highlighting a deep digital divide in the United States and introducing thorny ethical dilemmas.
Sending $1,200 checks to millions of Americans was a big part of the aid bill Congress passed last month. Around 80 million Americans got that money this week. But 60 million are still waiting.
Congress' recent aid package directed $370 billion to help small businesses. The fund is out of money, and it seems very few who applied got help.
Live performance has always been a risky business, run on thin margins. The COVID-19 pandemic has ratcheted up that risk and sharpened those margins to a razor's edge.
Rural hospitals already walk a scalpel's edge between solvency and collapse. Coronavirus threatens to push many of them over the brink.
Five indicators provide a gauge of how daily economic life in America has changed.
Hospitals are ramping up and gathering supplies to deal with a deluge of coronavirus patients. At the same time, revenues are down. All of this means hospitals across the U.S. are laying off workers.
Most of the world's developed economies have gone on total economic lockdown to combat coronavirus. Sweden has kept its economy open. Sweden says this is better for the economy and for public health.
The coronavirus pandemic may have pushed trade wars off the front page, but such wars are still with us — and they're complicating the world's ability to fight the virus.
Many gig workers have suddenly found themselves providing essential services during the COVID-19 pandemic. But many also feel like they have to work in an unsafe situation.
Different cities responded in different ways to the Spanish Flu outbreak of 1918. And their economies fared differently as a result.
We had almost a decade of growth in the jobs market. But in the last two weeks, nearly 10 million people lost their jobs. Today, we look at the labor market — what's happening and where it's headed.
Faced with the prospect of shutting up shop because of coronavirus, some companies are retooling and pivoting to keep their doors open and their workers employed.
Policymakers can still do more to fight the coronavirus recession. Here are three ideas that we haven't yet tried.
Emergency rooms all over the country are struggling with limited resources: masks, ventilators, hospital beds, doctors. We talk to one ER doctor in New York about how she is managing those resources right now.
Coronavirus questions on the yield curve and refinancing. And some of the ways individuals can help.
President Trump got major backlash this week when he suggested businesses should reopen by Easter. Critics said that was way too early. How do we know when it's safe for businesses to reopen?
Layoffs and furloughs due to the coronavirus clampdown have pushed 3.3 million Americans to apply for unemployment benefits, the largest weekly increase in U.S. history.
The Senate has managed to negotiate a $2 trillion relief package to help keep the U.S. economy afloat as we deal with the coronavirus pandemic. What's in it and will it be enough?
A few years ago, the World Bank issued bonds designed to get cash to needy countries in the event of a pandemic. Sounds like a great idea! But the bonds haven't paid out yet and they may never.
Because of social distancing, the U.S. restaurant industry has entirely disintegrated with unimaginable speed, leaving its workers to face an uncertain future.
Zero and 27 are our indicators of the week. Zero (or nearly zero) is the Fed's new benchmark interest rate. 27 is the number of days that around half of small businesses in the U.S. can go without making money.
A short supply of test kits, staff and equipment have put the U.S. behind in terms of coronavirus testing. We talk to one healthcare worker about what's been limiting their coronavirus testing ability.
China appears to have stopped the spread of coronavirus within its borders. People there are now beginning to adjust to a new normal.
Millions of people all across the world are now having to work from home. Including team Indicator. Today, a look at how this might change the way we work... and what it's like to skip the office.
As social distancing kicks in and cities begin moving aggressively to contain the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the U.S. economy is hitting the brakes. Hard.
The global economy is being hammered this week - markets have tanked, businesses are closing down. The spreading virus is part of it, but most of the effect is coming from fear.
The U.S. spends more on healthcare as a share of its economy than any other wealthy country. In addition to making care less affordable, that also causes indirect damage to the rest of the economy.
As the outbreak of COVID-19 becomes officially classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organization, we look at the role of the Epidemic Intelligence Service the CDCs "disease detectives".
The economic effects of the coronavirus outbreak will take some time to show up in the most important economic indicators. We offer three high-frequency indicators to track its effects in real time.
A spat between Russia and Saudi Arabia led to a collapse in oil prices over the weekend. Stock prices followed. What happened and what it means.
Today's healthy jobs report was uncontaminated by the coronavirus outbreak, but some parts of the labor market may be especially vulnerable in the months ahead.
U.S. policymakers are taking steps to limit the spread and impact of coronavirus. But they're not helped by American health policy, which could use an overhaul if it's to limit the spread of viral outbreaks.
As coronavirus wreaks havoc on the global economy, some businesses are actually experiencing a boom in demand. Today on the show, what happens when everyone suddenly wants to panic-buy your product.
The coronavirus continues to roil global markets and economies - including here at home, where the markets took yet another dive. Today, we look at an epicenter of the virus outbreak: northern Italy.
In 2017, rock climber Alex Honnold ascended Yosemite's rock formation El Capitan free solo, meaning without ropes or equipment. On today's show, we look at the economic lessons revealed by Honnold's extraordinary feat.
As coronavirus fears roiled markets this week, we hear from Bloomberg's Tracy Alloway, who's based in Hong Kong, about what it's like to live in a city in the throes of an outbreak
The world has changed, and nearly two thirds of global wealth is human capital. Policymakers and politicians may not understand just what that means for global politics.
Last week's Daytona 500 came at a precarious time for NASCAR. Once a behemoth in the world of professional sports, the company is now trying to entice a new generation of race fans.
Netflix had to become a content producer to compete with other streaming services. To raise the money to pay for all that content, the company turned to junk bonds.
The effects of assortative mating, or, what happens when people increasingly marry only other people with similar incomes and education.
Political Economist Jared Bernstein watched this week's Democratic debate. Many economic issues came up, but he thinks the candidates need to start talking about how much U.S. households are saving.
People who make the highest salaries are increasingly the same people who draw the highest incomes from their capital.
Last year, Team Indicator bought a junk bond! The bond was from a company called Hornbeck Offshore Services. On today's show, we learn more about the company and we check in on our investment.
Cardiff takes on the national debt, minimum wage, and gender-fluid tadpoles to get answers to your burning questions.
It's an Economic Valentine! Economics isn't known as a language of love. But economists Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers say it's central to their relationship and to their decisions as a couple.
Buy or rent? That's becoming a question for manufacturers of more and more types of products. Now fast fashion brands are trying to get in on the movement, too.
The first milestone in the history of economics was an 8th century B.C. poem — a lecture by an ancient Greek poet to his deadbeat brother.
In the last fifteen years, the cost of solar energy has declined so sharply that it has recently become the cheapest form of energy in the world. Now, major companies are jumping in to invest, but will the markets follow?
The coronavirus has sickened more than 40,000 people and killed more than 900. In addition to that devastating human toll, the outbreak is likely to have economically destructive effects as well.
The unemployment rate for black workers is roughly twice that of white workers - and has been for half a century. Today we discuss the reasons for the gap, and how to shrink it.
Betting on the Oscars is now legal in New Jersey and Indiana, so we went down to Atlantic City to place a bet on Best Picture. And we spoke to a few experts beforehand to understand how to make a better bet.
It used to be that companies strove for the best credit rating possible. Today, however, almost everyone's happy to slide by with a barely passing grade.
How do you measure happiness? Economist David Blanchflower says age has a lot to do with it.
As Iowans prepare to make their selection for the Democratic presidential nominee, a new study sheds light on just how polarized Americans are, even when it comes to reality itself.
Today is Brexit Day. As of 11:00pm tonight (GMT), the UK will no longer be part of the European Union. We spoke to a small business owner about what that might mean.
America has a hard-earned reputation for being the most dynamic economy on the globe. But that dynamism could be waning.
As the coronavirus spreads internationally, we wanted to know what it looks like when an infectious disease shuts down one of the world's largest economies. We speak with NPR Beijing correspondent, Emily Feng.
Nearly half of Amazon's packages are delivered not by UPS or USPS, but by the company itself. Amazon employs thousands of gig workers to make its deliveries, administering them through an app called Amazon Flex.
Monopoly recently rolled out a version of its classic board game, meant to highlight female contributions to the economy as well as women's economic issues. Today on the show, we play Ms. Monopoly.
Cardiff is back to present three economic facts for Stacey to deem fun, not fun, or just plain fascinating.
There's been a lot of troubling economic and political news over the last few years. In spite of that, the stock market has just kept on climbing.
Stacey and Cardiff face off on the question of whether the stock market is overvalued or undervalued.
On average, work by women artists sells for 40% less than work by male artists. Their work also represents just a small sliver of what's displayed in museums. So, how did women get shut out of the art world?
Venezuela started 2019 with rolling blackouts, hyperinflation, and crippling food shortages. Things have actually gotten a little better, mostly thanks to the economic innovations of everyday people.
The U.S. and China signed a trade deal yesterday - one where China has pledged to buy $200 billion worth of U.S. goods over the next two years. Seems like a big win for the U.S., but is it?
In October 2019, Americans received a record number of robocalls: 5.7 billion. We talked to Los Angeles Times columnist David Lazarus about these pesky calls and how we can avoid them.
Over half of sales on Amazon are from third-party sellers, some of whom are selling counterfeit goods. Faulty car seats are threatening children's safety, but is Amazon being held liable?
How lobbyists' campaigns for exclusions to the trade war have skewed incentives and disadvantaged small businesses.
Two reasons to blow the airhorn today: it's Jobs Friday, and The Indicator's 500th episode!
Predictions can be a fool's errand. Instead, we take a look at economic trends that we're planning to keep an eye on this year.
Thirsty for yield, and eager for tax breaks, investors are falling over themselves to buy municipal bonds. That could be a problem if the economy turns sour.
A home is the largest purchase most Americans will ever make. Why single women are losing out in both buying and selling compared to their male counterparts.
Since 2000, the Pantone Color Institute has announced a "color of the year." This year's color: Classic Blue.
After a catastrophic accident, you may be rushed to the hospital in an air ambulance. It could save your life, but there's no way to predict how much it will cost.
How a simple financial innovation turned a parking garage in Kuwait into one of the most important markets in the world... and how it all came crashing down.
We continue our series on financial bubbles with the British bicycle mania of the 1890s and the trail of bankrupt companies it left behind.
What lessons should we learn from one of the earliest documented financial crises in history?
Economist Jared Bernstein thinks it's about time we admit that the unemployment rate is not as useful as it used to be. He offers three alternative indicators.
The most common jobs for men and the most common jobs for women tend to be different — and this separation has big effects for everyone.
The share of people aged 25 to 54 in the labor force has fallen in the past couple of decades. What happened?
The 1937 union agreement between General Motors and the United Auto Workers union ushered in a period of tremendous worker prosperity and union strength. But today, labor is nowhere near a powerful as it used to be. What happened?
Stacey busts out the funometer and casts judgment on Cardiff's facts.
Cardiff said the best gift he could imagine getting was a junk bond... so we thought, "Can we actually buy one of those? Also, what exactly is a junk bond?"
Economics is an academic field notorious for its lack of diversity. This is especially true for black female economists. Why are they being left out?
"It's the most wonderful time of the year. But for consumers, it's also the most dangerous." David Lazarus of the Los Angeles Times discusses some of the major scams that arise during the holidays.
When economists see holiday gifts, they see waste: sweaters that never get worn; books that never get read. Many recommend cash or no gift at all. Economist Tim Harford may have a compromise.
The Trump administration announced it would hit the brakes on a new set of tariffs that were set to go into effect on Dec. 15. Could it be the start of a détente in the ongoing trade war?
The 2010s have been a rich decade for economic megatrends. But some trends haven't gotten the attention they deserve.
Mary Rieckmann and her husband run a small dairy in rural Wisconsin. But a perfect storm of factors has plunged farmers like her into crippling debt.
It's been a tough year for small farmers hit by trade wars and extreme weather. And as Time's Alana Semuels reports, this latest trouble is just part of a decades-long decline in small-scale farming.
When the rich stop buying luxury condos, sale prices drop for everyone. But rents are a different story.
It's time for our favorite Friday of every month: Jobs Friday! This week, we look at job switching and what it reflects about the tightening labor market.
Nike, the country's largest sporting brand, is pulling its products off of Amazon. What spurred this decision, and will other companies follow suit?
Today, the show takes a distinctly positive stance in making the case for being optimistic about the economy in 2020. Five reasons why you should, plus kittens and rainbows.
Manhattan is known for being a grid. But 200 years ago, it was a hilly, bucolic wilderness. The transformation all started with a secret map. And the reason was all about economics.
Back in the early 1800s, Manhattan was a wild, sparsely populated place, but it was just about to be developed big-time. There was a lot of money to be made knowing what would go where.
Economist Claudia Sahm explains the eponymous Sahm Rule, and how changes in the unemployment rate point to whether or not we are in a recession.
Niche food products at grocery stores have been getting more and more popular. But, what took so long?
Next week, a new product will hit store shelves. It's been in development for 20 years and cost millions of dollars to bring to market. It's a new kind of apple. And the stakes are high.
After years of teasing, deliberating and negotiating, oil behemoth Saudi Aramco finally looks poised to go public. But the IPO is shaping up to be a lot more modest than the original plan.
What will Thanksgiving dinner cost you this year? Also, Cardiff brings back the debate on which is better, pumpkin or pecan pie.
In our second spotlight episode on Lancaster County, we look into what Lancaster's success can tell us about the relationship between refugees and the local economy.
The profit margin for groceries is razor thin. To stay competitive against increasingly large competitors like Amazon Prime, retailers are turning to a new service: curbside pickup.
The economy is one of the most important factors in how people vote. But its influence has been changing and it has everything to do with politics.
Cardiff surprises Stacey with three feel-good facts about the economy, and she decides whether or not those facts are awesome.
Esther Duflo and Abhijit Banerjee talk about their work and what happens when you win a Nobel Prize.
Did President Trump's trade policies cost Republican votes last year? We talk to economist Chad Bown to find out.
Sixty years ago, a food scare nearly crushed the cranberry business. Cranberries have bounced back since then, but the industry is facing new threats.
Netflix, HBO, Amazon, Hulu, Disney, NBC, they're all at war for your eyeballs. Today on the show, the streaming wars. Who the major players are, what's at stake and what it will mean for you.
A heavily rural county with a big manufacturing base and a low share of college graduates has found a way to thrive.
It's no secret that every online platform you use is keeping track of your information. But what if this data is being used to give you a 'score' as a customer?
The leather manufacturing industry was once a backbone of the American economy. Now the industry is in decline, and the trade war isn't helping.
Last year, the Education Department reported that U.S. universities received over $1.3 billion dollars in the form of gifts and contracts. Most of this money came from China.
A new working paper suggests that children of poor immigrants have higher rates of upward economic mobility than children of poor US-born parents. What factors are at play?
In this week's edition of jobs friday, we look into why 72% of unemployed people do not have unemployment insurance.
In our second episode on scary stories on the economy we ask Tim Harford and Jared Bernstein what keeps them up at night. Also, has anxiety about the economy spooked off the Halloween spirit?
PG&E announced it was shutting off power to thousands of Californians to lessen the risk of wildfire. This is costing residents and businesses dearly and PG&E says it will likely be the new normal.
We invite Tyler Cowen once again to play another round of overrated/underrated.
A lot of the stuff we buy comes via ship, using a particularly dirty kind of fuel. Now the shipping industry wants to change.
WeWork has had a rough few weeks — its CEO was fired, it's lost billions of dollars and it's laying off thousands of workers. What happened? And what does that mean for the business of co-working?
Economist Jared Bernstein thinks it's about time we admit that the unemployment rate is not as useful as it used to be. He offers three alternative indicators.
We ask economists what scares them about the US economy right now.
Our housing options matter not just for how much money we spend, but also in other ways that have a lasting impact on our quality of life.
Tomorrow the UK Parliament will vote on Brexit... again. Today, we take a look at what's happening, why Brexit is taking so long and what's at stake.
2019 has been a very dramatic year for the IPO market. From Uber to Pinterest to WeWork--the headlines just kept coming. We celebrate it all with the first Annual IPO Awards!
There are so many conflicting indicators about the economy's health, it's difficult to know where we're headed. We present the Jekyll and Hyde economy.
Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller talks about his new book, which looks at how narratives drive economic change and may help economists more accurately forecast recessions.
We talk to newly-minted Nobel Prize winner Michael Kremer about using economics to solve real-world problems and what it's like to receive his field's highest honor.
Lots of people have been freaking out over the repo market... but what IS the repo market?
The global economy used to have a simple rule: the US leads, everybody else follows. Things have changed.
Climate activists have long used political and social pressures to decrease the use of fossil fuels and preserve forests... but now many are following the money to try and affect change.
We're seeing a lot of firsts in this economy. Some good, some not so good, some surprising.
Forever 21's bankruptcy filing highlights the flaws in fast fashion.
On the first Friday of every month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases a jobs report which includes the number of new jobs added to the U.S. economy. But how is that number calculated?
The tourism explosion in Iceland helped the tiny island recover from the 2008 financial crisis, but did the tourism industry grow too big, too fast?
A budget airline, WOW Air, helped fly the tiny island nation of Iceland out of a financial crisis — but then it all came crashing down.
We play Overrated, Underrated with Jill Schlesinger, CBS business analyst and author of The Dumb Things Smart People Do With Their Money.
Another quarter ends today, but the news is nuts right now, so we take a step back and guide you through the big themes we'll be looking at in the fourth quarter of the year.
In an attempt to stem the tide of gun violence, a group of religious organizations turned to an unlikely place: the markets.
Probiotics are increasingly popular — flying off of the shelves, even being stolen from pharmacies. But the jury's still out on their safety and efficacy. So, how did they get on store shelves?
Data shows that many of the popular assumptions about millennials are dead wrong.
A gesture which is given out freely to victims of big, catastrophic events are thoughts and prayers. But what if you could assign a monetary value to this gesture?
We stumble on interesting nuggets of economic information all the time. Here are some of our recent favorites.
Do hedge funds and private equity firms charge too much money to their investors — including, potentially, your pension fund?
Edith Penrose transformed our understanding of how businesses grow, and also lived a remarkable life full of adventure, intrigue, and tragedy.
Urgent care centers look a lot like emergency rooms. But they're a lot cheaper, both for patients and operators.
Brands are struggling to strike a balance between the real and digital worlds.
What the attacks on Saudi Arabia's oil production facilities could mean for the global oil industry.
Chinese consumers not only account for a growing share of high-end luxury goods purchases; they're transforming the way the market works.
White Claw could be the hottest alcoholic beverage of the summer of 2019. You can thank tax policy for (some of) that.
Bonds issued by Chinese governments more than a century ago could come back to haunt the People's Republic of China.
When new sports are added to the Olympics — like surfing and sports climbing — they see a bump in the year following the games. But, what happens after that?
NPR politics correspondent Danielle Kurtzleben answers your questions about student loans, taxes and tariffs.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has some predictions about the future of the US labor market.
Amazon is opening new stores — in the real world. And in true Big Tech fashion the experience is meant to emphasize convenience. All you need to do is walk in, grab your stuff, and go.
Proponents of Medicare for All argue it'll give all Americans health insurance and cost less. But even supporters admit it could mean job losses in the short term.
The costs of education and healthcare have climbed faster than other prices throughout the economy — for decades. An under-appreciated economic theory explains why.
There's a trend emerging in the finance world: Billionaire financiers are increasingly — if belatedly? — acknowledging inequality in America.
America doesn't produce much in the way of rare earths. As the trade war with China intensifies, that's becoming a problem.
Policy can take a back seat to politics in the run-up to elections. But that's no excuse for not watching to see what effects policy can have on an economy.
Not all goods are created equal: some are exempt from tariffs.
The 2020 election cycle is almost in full swing. People can barely go a day without seeing an ad from candidates asking for money. But does more money really mean more votes?
Our inbox is pretty much always filled with great questions about business, the economy and how the markets behave. Today, we answer three questions specific to the financial world.
Music festivals like Coachella and Lollapalooza have gotten a lot more expensive, and the reasons behind that increase can tell us a lot about how the economy is changing.
Our inbox is chock full of listener questions about whether there's a recession coming, and what we should do about it. Today, we answer.
China is the world's biggest rice producer. So why did China agree to buy two shipping containers of rice from the U.S.?
President Trump has kept his protectionist promises, but his scorched earth approach to dealmaking could have damaged global trading relationships for good.
Women pay more than men for many consumer products. Why some economists say that's a good thing.
Most states in the U.S. have a sales tax on menstrual products. Some states have repealed this so-called Tampon Tax, on the grounds that it's unfair to women. But the repeals come at a cost.
Women invest far less of their paychecks than men do. Sallie Krawcheck spent her career on Wall Street and she says this is a problem we need to solve.
When it came to the female labor force participation rate, America used to lead the world. But we've fallen behind. Today on the show: What happened?
A report from Glassdoor reveals which industries have the starkest gender pay gaps.
Short sellers are investors who bet against companies. They're the detectives of the stock market, unearthing flaws and making markets more efficient, though they also attract controversy.
Sporting event attendance is down. So teams are trying out creative, new ways to win back fans.
Graduate students are increasingly shouldering the country's student debt.
Listener questions! How the U.S.-China trade war has escalated, including a move by China to devalue its currency. Plus the history of pepperoni on pizza.
The stars of the new Fast & Furious movie will go to extraordinary lengths to protect their "tough guy" brands, even going so far as to negotiate to make sure their characters never lose a fight.
Happy Jobs Friday! The U.S. economy created 164,000 jobs in July, and the unemployment rate remained unchanged. But to send you into your weekend with more pep, we answer some listener questions.
Some presidential candidates have supported a policy — known as co-determination — that would see workers represented on corporate boards. We talked to one worker who already has a seat at the table.
The board of directors for most U.S. companies is made up of shareholders--not workers. A corporate system called co-determination aims to put employees at the table where big decisions are made.
The economy's looking pretty good. So, do we really need a rate cut right now? Stacey and Cardiff duke it out.
The Federal Reserve is set to cut interest rates this week. We also just passed the half-year mark. Two good reasons to check in on the health of the U.S. economy.
A growing workforce of high-tech specialists is luring American companies to Tijuana
The trade war between the U.S. and China started a little over a year ago, but the oft-predicted economic storm is yet to break.
An economic principle that has guided the Federal Reserve for decades is increasingly being questioned.
Investors will soon be able to bet on black rhinos. A conservation group is rolling out a 5 year, 50 million dollar rhino bond to help save the species.
Jared Bernstein has a shortlist of economic ideas that he thinks his colleagues have been getting wrong for decades.
Introducing a new series: Finance Fridays With Mary!
The price of gold is at a six-year high and gold bugs say it's the safest place to put your money in uncertain times. But is it actually a good investment?
The yield curve is inverted! We answer a few questions we have gotten from our listeners about our beloved recession predicting indicator.
About 44 million people owe nearly 1.5 trillion dollars in student loans all together. But for some people — like our producer Darius Rafieyan — paying them requires some mental adjustments.
GIPHY makes those viral mini-videos that people use to color their texts and emails. They're super popular, but they're free. So how does GIPHY plan to make money?
The computers that mine Bitcoin use a lot of electricity. That's created some unique arbitrage opportunities in different parts of the world. And causing governments some concern.
Japan's worker shortage has gotten so bad it's forced some companies to declare bankruptcy. The solution? Telling workers to work less.
One of the biggest international banks--Deutsche Bank--is laying off 18,000 workers and cutting costs to try and save itself from going under. How did things get so bad?
Last week's California quakes have reinforced fears of "the big one", the high-magnitude trembler that seismologists say is inevitable. How ready is the city of Los Angeles?
The monthly pace of jobs growth has slowed this year. But that's not necessarily a problem.
A look at the assets and liabilities of the American colonies on the eve of revolution.
The U.S. is a big place, nearly 1.9 billion acres. On today's Indicator, we look at how all that land is divvied up.
Today we answer listener questions: why is so much consumption necessary for a healthy economy (or as our listener put it — why do we have to buy so much crap for the economy to be healthy?). Plus, what are some good economic resources for teenagers?
One of the largest companies in the world, Amazon, just shuttered its food delivery service, Amazon Restaurants. But Amazon's fails are a bit different.
What it means that the U.S. is now the biggest consumer and producer of crude oil in the world.
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West got a lot of blowback for using private firefighters to protect their California home from a wildfire. Today on The Indicator, the business of private firefighting.
Basketball, football and baseball may draw big crowds and score primetime television spots, but niche sports, like cornhole, axe throwing and even professional arm wrestling, are beginning to attract interest and money.
If you're considering a popular uprising against a government, it turns out there may be a recipe that can almost guarantee your success.
Traditionally, noncompete clauses have been reserved for whiter collar professionals. But as the labor market tightens, employers increasingly want blue-collar workers to adhere to these agreements too.
The U.S. women's soccer team is way more successful than the men's. Yet they say they get paid less than half, on average, compared to the men's team.
Shares in the online chat service Slack hit the stock market today. But Slack went public in an unconventional way.
This week Facebook announced plans for its own cryptocurrency, the Libra. Regulators are cautious, and no one really knows how it will work. But Wall Street is excited.
Japan is still recovering from a brutal recession that lasted ten years. The country has tried a variety of fiscal and monetary measures to bring its economy back.
The U.S is about to mark the longest economic expansion in its history. It's an impressive achievement, but in many ways the economy is still struggling.
People hear the word 'economics' and probably think: numbers, equations, and percentages. But hidden underneath the math, is a force that can't be quantified.
The mayor of Huntington Beach says he wants less housing development in his city. The governor of California says that's against the law.
New rules governing water use in California have sparked innovation in agribusiness, including a brand new market for water.
Today we answer listener questions: How does U.S. gross domestic product break down into different industries, and how do meat alternatives compare to the real thing?
The introduction of the three-point line changed how people play basketball. And it has some compelling parallels to economics.
Happy Jobs Friday! The labor market is showing signs of slowing down. The unemployment rate is still low at 3.6 percent, but only 75,000 jobs were added in the month of May — a lot fewer than what economists expected.
Office temperature can affect more than comfort; a recent study shows it has serious implications for productivity. We talked to one economist who quantified the effects of temperature on men and women.
The deadliest wildfire in California's history destroyed thousands of homes in Butte County. The area is still an active disaster zone. But insurance companies are making residents move back.
Co-working spaces might just be the future of work. Take WeWork. It's been cropping up in cities all over the world--borrowing billions to fuel its growth. Now, it's planning to go public.
The trade war between the U.S. and China is challenging a long-standing assumption about globalization — that economic ties between countries would deepen with minimal political interference.