Economy & Business

Business news

Updated at 6:53 p.m. ET

Jack Bogle, the founder of Vanguard who created the first index mutual fund for individual investors in 1975, died Wednesday at the age of 89, the company said.

Bogle started a revolution in the way people invest. He believed that investors should own a mix of bonds and stocks but shouldn't pay investment managers to pick them.

Updated at 4:45 p.m. ET

Officials leasing the Old Post Office Building for the Trump International Hotel in Washington improperly ignored the Constitution's anti-corruption clauses when they continued to lease the government property to President Trump even after he won the White House, according to an internal federal government watchdog.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

There are plenty of reasons why the U.S. economy could slip into recession within the next couple of years. There's the trade war with China, slowing economic growth, rising interest rates, dysfunction in the government, and the prospect of fading stimulus.

But what about the other side? What about the case for optimism? Economist Jared Bernstein, an old friend of the show, got in touch because he thinks we shouldn't neglect the positive economic signals that he's seeing right now.

British Prime Minister Theresa May survived a no-confidence vote in Parliament on Wednesday to remain in office — but saw more of her power ebb away as she battled to keep Brexit on track after lawmakers demolished her European Union divorce deal.

May won a narrow victory, 325 votes to 306 votes, on an opposition motion seeking to topple her government and trigger a general election.

Now it’s back to Brexit, where May is caught between the rock of her own negotiating red lines and the hard place of a Parliament that wants to force a radical change of course.

The partial government shutdown is inflicting far greater damage on the U.S. economy than the Trump administration previously estimated, the White House acknowledged.

President Trump's economists have now doubled projections of how much economic growth is being lost each week.

My Economy tells the story of the new economic normal through the eyes of people trying to make it, because we know the only numbers that really matter are the ones in your economy.

Cheaters never prosper... except on Wall Street

10 hours ago

British P.M. Theresa May's Brexit plan went down in flames Tuesday, but the markets didn't really seem to care. Ukrainian hackers made millions after breaking into the Securities Exchange Commission's database. Plus, ahead of the World Economic Forum next week, a look at one of the world's most pressing problems: trade tensions. And we take a quick look at Apple's broken battery boon.

By many measures, the U.S. economy still looks strong. Positive factors like job growth, rising wages and low unemployment inspired a lot of confidence in the economy — until recently. A quarterly survey of small- and medium-sized business CEOs finds that, after soaring over the past two years, confidence in the economy has fallen to pre-election levels.

Click on the audio player above to hear the full story

A 'lifestyle concierge' is not your average bellhop

13 hours ago

Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan gets rejected, so how does Britain move forward? Plus, we take a peek inside the world of lifestyle concierges, who cater to every whim of the wealthy and, every once in a while, the not-so-rich.

Today's show is sponsored by SignNowPitney Bowes and Wasabi Hot Cloud Storage.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It is very rare in Britain for the ruling party to lose a vote in Parliament. It is unprecedented for a government to lose the way Prime Minister Theresa May did yesterday.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

As the standoff between President Trump and Congress continues over funding for Trump's proposed border wall, the partial shutdown of the federal government means workers will go weeks without a paycheck. That has some looking for temporary jobs to pay their bills.

In Boise, Idaho, Chris Kirk says he's worked for the federal government for 19 years. He administers contracts for the hundreds of millions of dollars the U.S. Forest Service spends on fighting wildfires. But these days he's on furlough and looking for extra income.

Sriracha sauce. It's everywhere. Even beer and donuts. The fiery chili paste concocted by Vietnamese-American immigrant David Tran has conquered the American market and imagination in the past decade.

But the original Sriracha is actually Thai — and comes from the seaside city of Si Racha, where most residents haven't even heard of the U.S. brand, which is now being exported to Thailand.

A decade-long fight ended at the Supreme Court this week, when justices refused to hear an appeal by veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who say that toxic smoke from burn pits made them sick.

From the BBC World Service… Britain's prime minister suffered a much bigger-than-expected defeat on her Brexit proposal last night, a plan that took two years to negotiate with the E.U. So, now what? We hit the streets to talk to workers in the U.K.'s financial hub about what it all means for investors and the future of the economy. Then, how do you plan for an event that's been dubbed the world's biggest gathering of people in one of the most impoverished cities?

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