National News

Bus Crash Tragedy: Investigators Work As Communities Mourn

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 07:25

Investigators don't yet know what caused a deadly highway crash that killed 10 people Thursday after a FedEx truck hit a bus that was taking teenagers to tour a college campus in Northern California.

» E-Mail This

Tech Week: Heartbleed, The Latest Bubble And Windows XP Retires

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 06:40

The cybersecurity threat that individuals are largely powerless to fix, Heartbleed, dominated this week's headlines. And is Silicon Valley overvaluing the future?

» E-Mail This

Between Friends, Family And Country, Ukrainian Police Lie Low

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 06:33

As pro-Russia demonstrators continue their tense standoff in Eastern Ukraine, police are conspicuously absent from city streets.

» E-Mail This

Pakistani Court Tosses Out Attempted Murder Charge Against Baby

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:43

Weeks after he was fingerprinted and appeared in court, baby Musa is no longer living under the shadow of an attempted murder charge. The boy was reportedly 9 months old when he was charged.

» E-Mail This

Republicans Form New Fundraising Group, On Heels Of High Court Ruling

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:04

Seeking to capitalize on the Supreme Court's recent ruling that eased restrictions on political contributions, Republicans are launching a new "super joint fundraising committee."

» E-Mail This

Iran's Culture Wars: Who's Winning These Days?

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

Men and women ski on the same slopes. A rock band performs in the capital. It's all part of the constant tug-of-war between religious conservatives and those seeking more social freedoms.

» E-Mail This

School Lunch: Any Chicken In Those 'Food-Like Nubbins'?

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

It took a Freedom of Information Act to get the Chicago Public Schools to disclose what's in the chicken nuggets they serve in their cafeterias. NPR's Scott Simon reveals the chemical contents.

» E-Mail This

Pentecostal Churches Accused Of Exploiting Cameroon's Poor

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

Pentecostalism is spreading rapidly throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Half of the world's Pentecostalists live there, and Cameroon's government has deemed the church a national threat.

» E-Mail This

Guineans Scramble To Defend Themselves Against Deadly Virus

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

A recent outbreak of Ebola in Guinea has the country on edge. Guineans have never experienced the deadly virus, and are learning quickly how to protect themselves.

» E-Mail This

A Year After Bombings, Boston Comes Back 'Strong'

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

The Boston Strong campaign cheers the grit and grace the city's shown since last year's marathon bombing. Journalist Mike Barnicle tells NPR's Scott Simon how Bostonians are overcoming the tragedy.

» E-Mail This

Jailed In Cuba Since 2009, USAID Contractor On Hunger Strike

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

Alan Gross has been in a Cuban jail for more than four years. This week, he went on a hunger strike. Reporter Jeffrey Goldberg, recently back from Cuba, brings NPR's Scott Simon an update.

» E-Mail This

IRS Chasing Children For Dead Parents' Debts

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

The IRS is going after taxpayers to pay their deceased parents' decades-old debts. NPR's Scott Simon talks with Marc Fisher of The Washington Post about the collection efforts.

» E-Mail This

After Austerity, British Economy Declared World's Fastest-Growing

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 05:03

In effect, the U.K. is saying "I told you so" after being declared the the fastest growing economy of any rich country in the world. NPR's Scott Simon talks with economist Simon Johnson.

» E-Mail This

Armed Men Take Police HQ In Eastern Ukraine City

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 04:21

A pro-Russian group is one of several that have seized public government buildings in the past week. Ukrainian officials promise a "very tough" response.

» E-Mail This

Cursed With Mom Guilt? Charlie Brown Might Cure What Ails You

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 03:03

Whenever writer Yiyun Li feels guilty about her parenting choices, she turns to Peanuts for refuge, holding on to the comforting comic strip as tightly as Linus clutches his security blanket.

» E-Mail This

Gassy Cows Are Warming The Planet, And They're Here To Stay

NPR News - Sat, 2014-04-12 01:06

Methane from livestock accounts for a huge portion of agricultural greenhouse gas emissions, according to a UN report. But reducing global meat consumption isn't necessarily the answer to the problem.

» E-Mail This

Food inflation, or, why bacon is a good investment

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-04-11 18:21
Friday, April 11, 2014 - 18:28 Scott Olson/Getty Images

California cows.

If you’ve noticed your receipt from the grocery store seems larger than usual, you have food inflation to thank.

While the prices of everything usually go up due to regular boring inflation, commodities like food have outpaced other goods.

Matthew Boesler, Business Insider reporter, says food inflation is increasing because of a few different factors.

“A lot of it is due to weather. We have a big drought in California. We’ve had dry conditions across the Midwest, the Great Plains regions,” Boesler says. “The extreme weather events serve to disrupt crop supplies. and that can drive prices up.”

“Another factor you have is the ‘financial-ization’ of these commodities markets,” he says. Hedge funds and other investors are increasingly pouring money into goods like beef and coffee. “It’s very easy for an investor to bet on rising commodity prices. And no one really bets on those prices going down, so you have a lot of one-way money flowing into these markets, and they can become quickly overwhelmed because [investment markets are] not designed for that.”

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Raghu Manavalan/Marketplace

 

“Supply and demand sort of governs the price of a commodity, but the way these markets are set up and you know, given how much capital is flowing seeking investment opportunities, the jumps in prices can be very volatile and large.”

Marketplace Money for Friday, April 11, 2014by Raghu ManavalanPodcast Title Food inflation, or, why bacon is a good investmentStory Type InterviewSyndication Flipboard BusinessSlackerSoundcloudStitcherBusiness InsiderSwellPMPApp Respond No

Tidying up with financial spring cleaning

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-04-11 16:41
Friday, April 11, 2014 - 17:31 Wikimedia Commons

Once you're all done with your taxes, it's the season for spring cleaning. Organizing ... decluttering your house ... throwing out old furniture, money can work the same way, too.

Personal finance expert Farnoosh Torabi gives us her recipe for a productive financial spring cleaning.

Automate your bills: “Automate your bills because that means less stress. It’s minimizing your financial burdens ... Also, to make sure you’re always paying your bills, never getting behind.”

Go paperless: “This is something as a country we’re doing more and more of, but some of us are a little bit behind ... That will help to declutter and give some piece of mind.”

Hold onto three (or six) years worth of tax documents: “If the IRS does come a knocking with an audit, they will want to see the last three years of your records, and all your supporting documents. The one exception, you have to answer this honestly, if you’ve been underreporting income and the IRS audits you for that reason, they can go back as far as six years. So if you’re somebody that takes a little bit of risk with your reporting, and pushes the envelope, make sure you have even more support and backup.”

Look ahead: "Spring is a time when we’re looking ahead. A lot of families perhaps are thinking about a home, people are buying cars, applying for loans for school, so this is a good time to get a firm understanding of where you stand credit wise. Go check your report at annualcreditreport.com (and that’s free!)."

What are your tips for financial spring cleaning? Share them in the comments, on Facebook, or on Twitter @LiveMoney.

Marketplace Money for Friday, April 11, 2014Interview by Lizzie O'LearyPodcast Title Tidying up with financial spring cleaningSyndication SlackerSoundcloudStitcherBusiness InsiderSwellPMPApp Respond No

Last-minute tips for tax procrastinators

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-04-11 15:39
Friday, April 11, 2014 - 16:30 Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Craig Baldwin holds a sign advertising a tax preparation office for people that still need help completing their taxes before the Internal Revenue Service deadline.

April 15 marks the last day to file your taxes ... unless you hit the panic button and file an extension.

You can file an extension, but…

You still have to pay your estimated taxes. According to Kelly Phillips Erb, a tax attorney in Pennsylvania, “the IRS wants you to pay what you paid last year, that’s a good rule of thumb. If nothing has changed remarkably, if you paid as much as you owed last year, you should be fine. The penalties and interest come when at the end of the extension, you still owe a bucket of money. you want to try and approximate what you owe as much as possible.”

If you can’t pay your taxes in full:

- Pay in installments

At IRS.gov, taxpayers can enter into an installment agreement with the IRS. “There are some restrictions and some limitations,” says Erb. “The one to keep in mind the most is that you have to owe less than $50,000 to qualify for the installment agreement. And it’s for individual taxpayers. Business taxpayers generally still have to go through the normal channels.”

- Pay a little bit now and a little bit later.

“Taxpayers shouldn’t be frightened of making partial payments,” Erb says. Even if you have to pay a penalty and interest payments, that’s an improvement over leaving the full tax bill untouched.

Use a tax preparer ...

Though filing your taxes can be a labor of love for many people, Erb says there are times it’s worth using a professional. “If things have changed in your life, I highly recommend using someone … you know whether you’ve had a baby or whether you’ve gotten married and life events, you usually want somebody that can kind of help you get guided through the process because it’s my experience that the folks who are worried about getting their taxes done, it’s generally not that they are worried about making a mistake, it’s that they often are just kind of overwhelmed and I think those people tend to under-deduct.”

... But beware of preparer scams

“When you hire a tax preparer you want to make sure that they are credentialed, and that they know what they are doing. The IRS still require tax preparers prepare returns for compensation, those folks still need to have a PTIN number, you can think of it like a Social Security Number for preparers, so the IRS knows who’s preparing that return.”

... And IRS scams too

Scammers frequently pose as IRS representatives through email and phone calls, and threaten fines and arrest if you don’t immediately send money. “If you owe taxes, if anything has gone wrong with your filing, most of the time they’re going to contact you through a letter. They’re not going to text you. They’re not going to call you. And they’re not going to email you. And a lot of these identity thefts schemes that are going on right now are from folks posing as representatives from the IRS. Kind of the most prevalent one right now is when IRS allegedly, someone from the IRS, calls up folks, they’re kind of targeting immigrants and the elderly in particular, and say, ‘you owe money to us. We’re going to arrest you tomorrow if you don’t pay us now.’ And then they’re asking for debit card information over the phone.

 

What's your tax story? Leave us a comment on our site or Facebook page, or tweet us @LiveMoney.

Marketplace Money for Friday, April 11, 2014by Raghu ManavalanPodcast Title Last-minute tips for tax procrastinatorsStory Type InterviewSyndication SlackerSoundcloudStitcherBusiness InsiderSwellPMPApp Respond No

Food inflation, or, why bacon is a good investment

Marketplace - American Public Media - Fri, 2014-04-11 15:28

If you’ve noticed your receipt from the grocery store seems larger than usual, you have food inflation to thank.

While the prices of everything usually go up due to regular boring inflation, commodities like food have outpaced other goods.

Matthew Boesler, Business Insider reporter, says food inflation is increasing because of a few different factors.

“A lot of it is due to weather. We have a big drought in California. We’ve had dry conditions across the Midwest, the Great Plains regions,” Boesler says. “The extreme weather events serve to disrupt crop supplies. and that can drive prices up.”

“Another factor you have is the ‘financial-ization’ of these commodities markets,” he says. Hedge funds and other investors are increasingly pouring money into goods like beef and coffee. “It’s very easy for an investor to bet on rising commodity prices. And no one really bets on those prices going down, so you have a lot of one-way money flowing into these markets, and they can become quickly overwhelmed because [investment markets are] not designed for that.”

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Raghu Manavalan/Marketplace

 

“Supply and demand sort of governs the price of a commodity, but the way these markets are set up and you know, given how much capital is flowing seeking investment opportunities, the jumps in prices can be very volatile and large.”

ON THE AIR
BBC World Service
Next Up: @ 05:00 am
Democracy Now

KBBI is Powered by Active Listeners like You

As we celebrate 35 years of broadcasting, we look ahead to technology improvements and the changing landscape of public radio.

Support the voices, music, information, and ideas that add so much to your life.Thank you for supporting your local public radio station.

FOLLOW US

Drupal theme by pixeljets.com ver.1.4