National News

Denmark Claims Part Of The Arctic, Including The North Pole

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 09:39

The region claimed is more than the size of Texas and Oklahoma combined. The energy-rich Arctic is also contested by Canada, Russia, Norway and the U.S. A U.N. panel will study the Danish claim.

» E-Mail This

Endless Ebola Endemic? That's The 'Risk We Face Now,' CDC Says

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 09:03

Dr. Thomas Frieden visits West Africa this week to assess the fight against Ebola. His goal? Figure out how to keep the disease from turning into a permanent problem.

» E-Mail This

'Facebook users' are no longer 'Facebook users'

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 08:59

Turns out, the word "user" – the term the software industry uses when referring to the people who use their product – is no longer a favorable one at Facebook headquarters.

"Facebook switched to internally calling its users 'people,'" says Robinson Meyer, associate editor at The Atlantic. "So instead, on its internal dashboards talking about 'daily average users,' it talks about 'daily average people.'"

Armchair Socialists Who Don't Sit — And Other BMJ Christmas Articles

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 08:07

Researchers found armchair socialists — and their right-wing counterparts — were more physically active than centrists. Another tongue-in-cheek study in the journal concluded that men are idiots.

» E-Mail This

Prolific Prescribers Of Controlled Substances Face Medicare Scrutiny

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 08:00

In the face of abuse concerns, Medicare covered more prescriptions for potent controlled substances in 2012 than in 2011. Top prescribers often have faced disciplinary action or criminal charges.

» E-Mail This

Small Businesses Drop Coverage As Health Law Offers Alternatives

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 07:01

Subsidies created by the health law to help workers buy their own coverage and steady increases in companies' insurance costs have made it easier for them to decide to discontinue health insurance.

» E-Mail This

From Australia To France, Another Bad Day For Uber

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 06:50

Uber's "surge pricing" quadrupled fares for some customers trying to flee the area in Sydney where a gunman took hostages. France banned Uber's low-cost service over its lack of professional licenses.

» E-Mail This

Is Ted Cruz Running For President...In 2008?

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 06:23

Even in an age of galloping ambition, the Texan rides ahead of the pack. Obama liked to quote Martin Luther King's line about "the fierce urgency of now," Cruz seeks to embody it at every turn.

» E-Mail This

Families Of Newtown Victims Sue Rifle Manufacturer

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 05:46

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of 9 families, alleges the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle should have never been sold to the public, because it is a military weapon.

» E-Mail This

'Half-Asian'? 'Half-White'? No — 'Hapa'

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 05:37

Code Switch contributor Alex Laughlin explores the nuance and meaning of an increasingly popular identifier.

» E-Mail This

Quiz: Analyzing after-school activities

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 04:39

More children participate in sports than clubs or music lessons, according to the Census Bureau.

var _polldaddy = [] || _polldaddy; _polldaddy.push( { type: "iframe", auto: "1", domain: "marketplaceapm.polldaddy.com/s/", id: "what-percentage-of-children-ages-6-to-17-participate-in-at-least-one-after-school-extracurricular-ac", placeholder: "pd_1418650729" } ); (function(d,c,j){if(!document.getElementById(j)){var pd=d.createElement(c),s;pd.id=j;pd.src=('https:'==document.location.protocol)?'https://polldaddy.com/survey.js':'http://i0.poll.fm/survey.js';s=document.getElementsByTagName(c)[0];s.parentNode.insertBefore(pd,s);}}(document,'script','pd-embed'));

Rare Northern White Rhino Dies At San Diego Zoo

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 04:12

Now, only five remain in the world. Angalifu was thought to be 44 years old. He died of old age.

» E-Mail This

PODCAST: Fighting drought with technology

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 03:00

Renewed concern in Russia with the ruble slipping yet again. More on that. Plus, we look at the biggest private equity deal of 2014: PetSmart agreeing to be purchased for $8.7 billion. And if you haven't heard, California is experiencing a serious drought. It's also the home of that cradle of innovation, We look at what the tech sector is doing to attack the drought.

WATCH: Live, Local Coverage Of Australian Hostage Siege

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:42

A gunman is holding an unknown number of hostages at a downtown chocolate cafe. Police have put a swath of Australia's largest city under lockdown.

» E-Mail This

Live Blog: 5 Escape From Sydney Cafe After Being Held Hostage

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:34

An unknown number of people remain inside the cafe. Police cordoned off a huge swath of Australia's largest city.

» E-Mail This

Closing the gender gap

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:00

Possible 2016 presidential contender Hillary Clinton is in New York on Monday to talk about the knowns and unknowns when it comes to women's issues. A group called Data2X run by the United Nations Foundation is trying to tackle what it calls a gender data gap. We take a look at what that gap is and why it matters.

Click the media player above to hear more.

The 'one percent' lead holiday retail

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:00

The richest Americans will lead the way in holiday spending again this year.

At the beginning of the Great Recession, luxury retail fell hard – some brands and product-categories saw declines of 30 to 40 percent, says retail analyst David Schick at Stifel Nicolaus. That compared to declines under 5 percent for mass-market retail.

But after the recession, luxury retail rebounded sooner and stronger than the rest of the market. And that strength has continued through 2014. Management consultancy Bain & Company predicts the global luxury market will have grown by 5 percent in 2014; the increase will be 6 percent in the U.S. – significantly higher than mainstream U.S. retail.

“At the higher end of the income spectrum, we have seen financial assets helping the consumer in a way that isn’t helping other quintiles of income,” says Schick. “And wage growth is the same story.” That increased wealth at the top will likely help luxury brands such as Tiffany & Co.

Schick is quick to point out, though, that middle-income Americans are also doing better this year, with paychecks trending higher, unemployment down, and gas prices falling hard.

These consumers might now feel more comfortable splurging on a high-end brand—a Kate Spade handbag or Coach wallet.

“It’s not just the 1 percent that are carrying along high-end retailers,” says Kit Yarrow, professor emeritus of psychology at Golden Gate University and author of ‘Decoding the New Consumer Mind.’ “Obviously, the high-end retailers aren’t going to be doing well without them. But it’s also the huge influx of money coming from Chinese consumers that are visiting the U.S., and other nationalities. And also middle-class and upper-middle-class consumers who are stretching, because they perceive the value of those products to be worth it.”

Yarrow conducts "shop-alongs" with American consumers, including those in the six-figure income bracket. Stocks, home prices, and income have all combined to make these households even wealthier than they were before the recession.

But while they can afford to spend on luxury goods, she finds they don’t want to flaunt their money.

“They understand that there’s sort of an anti-wealth sentiment,” says Yarrow. “They don’t want to be conspicuous in their consumption. They don’t want other people to distrust them or feel separated from them. One woman I interviewed was embarrassed to say in front of other people that she’d paid full-price for a product, because she thought they might find that to be offensive.”

More retailers promise last-minute Christmas delivery

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:00

Today is expected to be the busiest shipping day in the country. But, that does not mean the next week and a half until Christmas will become slow. Companies will be shipping out packages all the way down to the wire.

Last year, the media reported a big backlash over late packages. There were storms, deliveries got backed up, and some presents spent Christmas sitting in cold, lonely warehouses.

Steve Osburn is a supply chain adviser with the management consulting firm Kurt Salmon. He says, “Coming out of last year, we estimated that people would be a little more cautious this year.” But, he says, that's not happening.

This year, Osburn says even more big retailers are promising last-minute delivery. He says companies are thinking “if my competitor is going to be able to do it, I need to be able to do it.”

To handle the surge of holiday packages, shippers like Fed Ex and UPS have hired tens of thousands of additional workers. 

Lisa Willis runs Missive, a custom letterpress company in San Francisco. She says customers have come to expect instantaneous delivery, and she wishes that weren't the case. Willis says, “As a small business we're up against all these really large companies that guarantee delivery dates.”

To try and compete, Willis gives her customers a price break if they order early.

The 1-Percent lead holiday retail

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 02:00

The richest Americans will lead the way in holiday spending again this year.

At the beginning of the Great Recession, luxury retail fell hard—some brands and product-categories saw declines of 30 to 40 percent, says retail analyst David Schick at Stifel Nicolaus. That compared to declines under 5 percent for mass-market retail.

But after the recession, luxury retail rebounded sooner and stronger than the rest of the market. And that strength has continued through 2014. Management consultancy Bain & Company predicts the global luxury market will have grown by 5 percent in 2014; the increase will be 6 percent in the U.S.—significantly higher than mainstream U.S. retail.

“At the higher end of the income spectrum, we have seen financial assets helping the consumer in a way that isn’t helping other quintiles of income,” says Schick. “And wage growth is the same story.” That increased wealth at the top will likely help luxury brands such as Tiffany & Co.

Schick is quick to point out, though, that middle-income Americans are also doing better this year, with paychecks trending higher, unemployment down, and gas prices falling hard.

These consumers might now feel more comfortable splurging on a high-end brand—a Kate Spade handbag or Coach wallet.

“It’s not just the 1 percent that are carrying along high-end retailers,” says Kit Yarrow, professor emeritus of psychology at Golden Gate University and author of ‘Decoding the New Consumer Mind.’ “Obviously, the high-end retailers aren’t going to be doing well without them. But it’s also the huge influx of money coming from Chinese consumers that are visiting the U.S., and other nationalities. And also middle-class and upper-middle-class consumers who are stretching, because they perceive the value of those products to be worth it.”

Yarrow conducts ‘shop-alongs’ with American consumers, including those in the six-figure income bracket. Stocks, home prices, and income have all combined to make these households even wealthier than they were before the recession.

But while they can afford to spend on luxury goods, she finds they don’t want to flaunt their money.

“They understand that there’s sort of an anti-wealth sentiment,” says Yarrow. “They don’t want to be conspicuous in their consumption. They don’t want other people to distrust them or feel separated from them. One woman I interviewed was embarrassed to say in front of other people that she’d paid full-price for a product, because she thought they might find that to be offensive.”

A smart bet on PetSmart

Marketplace - American Public Media - Mon, 2014-12-15 01:30
$8.7 billion

The weekend saw the "biggest private equity deal of 2014": PetSmart sold itself for $8.7 billion to BC Partners, an investment firm based in London. 

6 percent

Management consultancy Bain & Company predicts the luxury market in the U.S. will have grown 6 percent in 2014. That's higher than the 5 percent growth in the global luxury market for 2014, and much higher than growth in mainstream U.S. retail.

18,210

The number of followers conservative blogger Charles C. Johnson had as of early Monday morning. Johnson has gained a lot of notoriety recently by proclaiming President Barack Obama is dead, publishing the addresses of two journalists and doxing the woman at the center of the rape scandal at UVA. David Carr spoke to Johnson for his column this week.

40

That's how many menu items McDonald's has added in the past seven years. In response to lagging sales, the brand will cut down its menu  starting with eight items. But which will bo first? Quartz has some suggestions.

Pages