Marketplace podcast

Marketplace

Every weekday, host Kai Ryssdal helps you make sense of the day’s business and economic news — no econ degree or finance background required. “Marketplace” takes you beyond the numbers, bringing you context. Our team of reporters all over the world speak with CEOs, policymakers and regular people just trying to get by.

Every weekday, host Kai Ryssdal helps you make sense of the day’s business and economic news — no econ degree or finance background required. “Marketplace” takes you beyond the numbers, bringing you context. Our team of reporters all over the world speak with CEOs, policymakers and regular people just trying to get by.

 

#50

A not-so-happy anniversary to Silicon Valley Bank

The failures of Silicon Valley Bank and several other institutions rank among the largest bank collapses in U.S. history. Almost a year later, small banks still face aftershocks. Also in this episode, traditional sports journalism is disappearing. Will accountability in the sports industry follow? And one couple finds financial freedom with an unusual real estate purchase. ... Read more

23 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:38

23 Feb 2024


#49

Biden hopes sustainable aviation fuel production could take flight soon

Sustainable aviation fuel — an alternative to conventional petroleum — aims to decarbonize a carbon-heavy sector. Right now, it accounts for less than 1% of global jet fuel. Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act incentivizes aviation’s transition to SAF, but manufacturers still face big roadblocks. Plus, not all SAFs are created equal. This episode is part of our series [“Breaking Ground,”] (https://www.marketplace.org/collection/breaking-ground/) where we look at how federal infrastructure spending might change the economy. ... Read more

22 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:36

22 Feb 2024


#48

Neel Kashkari and the Fed’s inflation fears

Overall, inflation has plummeted since June 2022, shortly after the Federal Reserve began hiking interest rates, and the Fed is getting closer to its 2% target. But consumer prices are still high. So why is it taking so long for the Fed to cut interest rates? “The Federal Reserve has been faked out before, where we thought inflation was licked, and then it flared back up again,” Neel Kashkari, president of the Minneapolis Fed, told us on today’s show. “That’s what we want to avoid.” Also: What to expect when Amazon replaces Walgreens on the Dow, how congressional budget fights threaten federal firefighters’ pay, and why the U.S. is selling its helium reserve. ... Read more

22 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:26

22 Feb 2024


#47

What’s in your wallet?

If a $35 billion deal goes through, Capital One will purchase Discover and become the nation’s largest credit card issuer. But the bank isn’t in it for credit debt — it’s in it for Discover’s payments system. Also in this episode: why Walmart had strong sales last quarter and how states are preparing for a potentially contentious Election Day. Also, is the post-lockdown travel boom still on? ... Read more

21 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:10

21 Feb 2024


#46

Can we break out of the mortgage lock-in effect?

It’s a tough time to be a first-time buyer in the housing market. But it’s also tricky if you own a home and are looking to buy a new one, because your mortgage rate could roughly double. That “lock-in effect” is keeping housing inventory low and pushing prices higher. Then, we’ll examine why shipping costs are falling despite global disruptions and hear how steakhouses are trying to rebrand themselves. ... Read more

19 Feb 2024

28 MINS

28:19

19 Feb 2024


#45

Vacant office buildings are making city budgets vulnerable

Vacant offices have been tough on the commercial real estate industry, and more recently lenders that have built a big business on those property loans. But the biggest losers are cities that depend on commercial property taxes. In this episode, some municipalities face big revenue shortfalls. Also: another blow to ESG investing, the cost of big-name credit cards and our excess stuff is feeding the booming storage space industry. ... Read more

16 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:20

16 Feb 2024


#44

Why so many layoffs in a hot labor market?

Cisco, the communications infrastructure giant, is planning to cut lots of jobs. It’s the latest high-profile company to do so. Meanwhile, we keep getting positive indicators about the labor market, like today’s data on falling jobless claims. We’ll explain the disconnect on today’s show. Also: What rising import prices mean, tracking shipments on freight trains and why a bank created to integrate emancipated Black Americans into the economy matters today. ... Read more

15 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:15

15 Feb 2024


#43

Walmart wants Vizio, but not for the TVs

Walmart is looking to buy TV manufacturer Vizio, according to The Wall Street Journal, even though it sells its own brand of TVs. That’s because these days, a TV’s worth is tied to its streaming platform, and acquiring Vizio’s SmartCast could help the big-box retailer grow into another kind of company. Plus, split surveys on small business optimism, a map of all the country’s zoning laws, and the falling number of small farmers. ... Read more

15 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:05

15 Feb 2024


#42

A so-so CPI

The January consumer price index just came out and inflation was up 3.1% year over year. That’s not awesome. But it’s not awful either. We’ll dig into the data, from lagging shelter costs to a still-hot labor market. Plus, monetary policy goes up against fiscal policy, the romance novel market flourishes, and rising prices for “inelastic” goods mean some consumers are gonna suffer. ... Read more

13 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:30

13 Feb 2024


#41

Cons-oil-idation

Diamondback Energy said today it will buy Endeavor Energy Resources, continuing the consolidation trend in the oil industry. In this episode, why oil and natural gas companies keep merging, especially in the Permian Basin region of Texas. Plus, robotaxi vandalization may represent resentment of Big Tech, lavish quinceañeras spawn a booming industry and some streaming services struggle to provide lag-free viewing. ... Read more

12 Feb 2024

29 MINS

29:41

12 Feb 2024


#40

A modest wish for the Year of the Dragon

China celebrates the Lunar New Year tomorrow. With many in the country struggling financially, they’re hoping the Year of the Dragon brings a healthier economy. Also: Foreign investors are cooling on U.S. commercial real estate, Americans are looking for snack food bargains and volunteers are repairing broken appliances at pop-up Fixit Clinics. ... Read more

09 Feb 2024

28 MINS

28:08

09 Feb 2024


#39

A turning point for Stewart Avenue

Today, a story about one street in one neighborhood in one of America’s highest-profile cities, and the $23.9 million grant meant to transform it. It’s a 4-mile stretch of Stewart Avenue in East Las Vegas, where more than a quarter of the residents live below the poverty line. But upgrades — like improving bus stops, adding bike lanes and planting trees — could have big implications for the community. It’s part of our series [“Breaking Ground,”] (https://www.marketplace.org/collection/breaking-ground/) where we look at how federal infrastructure spending might change the economy. ... Read more

08 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:42

08 Feb 2024


#38

Could AI be the next HR?

Artificial intelligence is still in its early stages, and most Americans don’t use it at work — yet. But a new survey shows 70% of workers are “very” or “somewhat” concerned about employers using AI in human resources decision-making, like hiring, firing and promotions. In this episode, we’ll dig into some AI job fears. Plus, New York Community Bank stock takes a wild ride after Moody’s dings its credit rating, and Ford’s electric vehicle sales are down, but its savings on emissions fines are up. ... Read more

07 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:36

07 Feb 2024


#37

Are you my mortgage servicer?

When banks let you take out a mortgage, the money they lend you might come from their reserves. But more often than not, banks turn around and sell your loan to an investor — and make an instant profit. In this episode, all about the secondary market for mortgages. Plus, JPMorgan Chase invests in its brick-and-mortar presence, household debt ticks up, and why China’s stock market is struggling. ... Read more

06 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:07

06 Feb 2024


#36

AI-tested, artist-approved poisoning tools

To train generative artificial intelligence models, many companies use images they find online without paying the artists. We’ll hear about two tools that help creators protect their work from being scraped for data. Also in this episode: Recruiting and staffing jobs are on the rebound, streaming services struggle to turn a profit and unregulated space pollution poses a threat to Earth’s atmosphere. ... Read more

06 Feb 2024

30 MINS

30:06

06 Feb 2024


#35

Hiring or hunting, this job market is tough

The tight labor market means employers are competing for workers, sometimes strenuously. But it isn’t all smooth sailing for job searchers either — prolonged interviewing and companies’ recession fears mean scoring a job can be tough. In this episode, what’s worse: trying to hire or get hired? Plus, a website that uses “Seinfeld” to explain legal policy, a look at how immigration stabilizes our economy and a tour of zero-carbon homes in coastal California. ... Read more

02 Feb 2024

27 MINS

27:21

02 Feb 2024


#34

Silence isn’t golden if you’re a TikTok creator

Universal Music Group pulled its songs from TikTok after the video platform’s license expired Wednesday. Now, creators will have to avoid using some of today’s biggest hits. Also in this episode: what it means when the BLS says productivity is up, why it matters that wage gains are slowing down and how popular food brands are connected to prison labor. ... Read more

01 Feb 2024

28 MINS

28:05

01 Feb 2024


#33

Forever renters

For some Americans, buying a home feels like an impossible goal — especially in this market. Maybe that’s why more renters than ever say they’re likely to be renters for life. In this episode: Homeownership is out of reach for some and just not a priority for others. Plus, the Federal Reserve hints at when we might see interest rates cut, and AI training methods raise ethical questions about “fair use.” ... Read more

01 Feb 2024

26 MINS

26:40

01 Feb 2024


#32

Wait … how big is our debt?

At $34 trillion, U.S. federal debt is at a record level. And economists say we’re entering uncharted waters with a 120% debt-to-GDP ratio. So, when should we start to worry? Also in this episode: Consumer confidence reaches a two-year high, activity heats up in the corporate bond market and beef Wellington takes center stage at Shanghai restaurants. ... Read more

31 Jan 2024

27 MINS

27:11

31 Jan 2024


#31

The office support jobs’ sluggish comeback

Jobs in office support (think custodians, security guards) grew just 2.6% in 2023, according to a  Bureau of Labor Statistics report tracking employment in different sectors. That may reflect a sluggish return to in-person work more than growth in the sector. In this episode, the office support ecosystem. Plus, Baltimore will use blockchain tech to battle vacant homes, teen employment hits a 14-year high and importers struggle with price spikes. ... Read more

30 Jan 2024

28 MINS

28:02

30 Jan 2024


#30

If the economy’s so good, what’s with all the layoffs?

The U.S. economy has had a sunny start to 2024 — so why is corporate America laying on the layoffs? Plus, the effects of “digital redlining” in the rural South; the Biden administration takes a closer look at liquefied natural gas exports; and apparel brands recruit the help of “mid-size” influencers to more effectively court consumers. ... Read more

26 Jan 2024

26 MINS

26:33

26 Jan 2024


#29

Cha-ching! Can you hear the economy growing?

The latest reading on the U.S. economy shows unexpected growth, led by spending on hotels, dining out and video games. We check in with some businesses that are feeling the consumer love. So that’s how the economy is doing. But how are people feeling about it? Split, according to a new poll that shows a growing divide between what high- and low-income earners think. Also: Profits from home sales fell but are still more than double what they were five years ago. And a doctor talks about her book on racism in medicine. ... Read more

26 Jan 2024

25 MINS

25:37

26 Jan 2024


#28

The New Deal’s legacy

When FDR’s administration created the New Deal, the relationship between the government and the economy changed forever. In some ways, Biden is trying to make a similar impact with more than $1 trillion authorized by legislation like the CHIPS Act and the Inflation Reduction Act. In our new series, “Breaking Ground,” we’ll be visiting communities across the country to see how the infusion of cash might change the economy. Today, we dive into what was accomplished with the New Deal and how it changed American society. ... Read more

25 Jan 2024

25 MINS

25:50

25 Jan 2024


#27

How much do you spend on sports?

The next big thing in streaming is undoubtedly live sports. The NFL’s first streaming-only game smashed records recently. The next big thing in sports, though? Gambling, which is becoming more accessible and more addictive. In this episode, fans spend on streaming and spend bigger on gambling platforms. Plus, New York City retail rents stay soft, organic certification comes at a price and middle managers have the worst time at work. ... Read more

24 Jan 2024

28 MINS

28:27

24 Jan 2024


#26

The honk-shoo-mimimi economy

Sleep aids and supplements, sleep tech and regular old mattresses make up a $100 billion global market combined. Which makes sense, since two-thirds of Americans don’t regularly get deep z’s. In this episode: How much would you pay for a good night’s sleep? Plus, Nordstrom’s challenge to straddle two retail worlds, AI might not take your job after all, and activist shareholders cause a stir at Exxon. ... Read more

23 Jan 2024

27 MINS

27:20

23 Jan 2024


#25

What does an “almost” government shutdown cost?

Congress narrowly avoided yet another government shutdown today, keeping thousands of federal employees in their jobs by basically extending last year’s budget for the short term. But being buzzer beaters comes at a price: Pushing back the budget deadline can cost federal departments precious time and representatives the trust of their constituents. Also in this episode, the New Deal history of Los Angeles freeways and the North American fruit you won’t find at most grocery stores. ... Read more

20 Jan 2024

26 MINS

26:26

20 Jan 2024


#24

“Treasury is used to doing what Treasury wants to do”

Though the IRS doesn’t collect racial data, it is significantly more likely to audit Black earned income tax credit filers than those of any other race. Dorothy Brown, a scholar of tax law and race, is part of a Treasury advisory committee on racial equity, and so far, she said, Secretary Janet Yellen hasn’t embraced the group’s recommendations as a priority. In this episode, the slow-going fight to fix racial disparities caused by the tax system. Plus, what hiring managers mean when they label candidates “overqualified.” ... Read more

19 Jan 2024

26 MINS

26:46

19 Jan 2024


#23

In this economy, we’re focusing on the little things

Discretionary spending has had a good run recently, and the purchases aren’t skewing practical. Furniture retailers, for example, had a lousy 2023 — splurgy shoppers were more focused on Swift tickets than sofas. And looking to 2024, consumers plan to steer clear of big-ticket items and instead buy affordable luxuries like cosmetics. In this episode: Americans are in their “joy spending” era. Plus, financial planners are wary of the new spot bitcoin exchange-traded funds and everything seems to always be on sale. ... Read more

18 Jan 2024

26 MINS

26:18

18 Jan 2024


#22

Does your business need a loan? Banks aren’t your only option.

Increasingly, small and medium businesses are taking out loans with hedge funds or investment firms, which can have fewer restrictions than banks and might be more flexible on loan amounts. In this episode, the pros and cons of private credit. Plus, office downsizing could ramp up this year, Kroger and Albertsons want to merge, and U.S. agricultural imports will likely exceed exports this year. ... Read more

17 Jan 2024

26 MINS

26:45

17 Jan 2024


#21

ACA insurance sees record sign-ups

About 20 million Americans enrolled in Affordable Care Act health insurance plans this go-round — the most since ACA marketplaces started enrolling people in 2013. Open enrollment for 2024 coverage ends tomorrow for most Americans. In this episode, the pandemic policies that boosted sign-ups. Plus, corporations are already fighting for opioid settlement money, minority small business owners face barriers to borrowing and a tiny Georgia town’s port could be the future of U.S. auto shipping. ... Read more

15 Jan 2024

27 MINS

27:51

15 Jan 2024