Chris Arnold http://kacu.org en In June Jobs Numbers, Signs For Optimism http://kacu.org/post/june-jobs-numbers-signs-optimism Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. There are plenty of Fourth of July references being tossed around about the latest economic numbers. Some analysts call the new report early fireworks, others caution hold the fireworks. But overall, the news is positive. The Labor Department says employers added 288,000 new jobs last month - more than expected. The unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent. And that's the lowest unemployment rate since 2008. The stock market hit an all-time high. Thu, 03 Jul 2014 20:09:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 40281 at http://kacu.org Housing Market Fake-Outs Stump Economists http://kacu.org/post/housing-market-fake-outs-stump-economists Many homebuyers have been throwing down cold hard cash for their entire house purchase in recent years. Some are baby-boomers who sold a bigger house and are downsizing. Some are investors. Sun, 29 Jun 2014 16:31:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 40086 at http://kacu.org Housing Market Fake-Outs Stump Economists Sluggish Housing Market A Product Of Millions Of 'Missing Households' http://kacu.org/post/housing-market-sluggish-because-millions-missing-households A year ago, the housing market looked like it was finally recovering. Sales and prices were picking up. But then home sales fizzled. Currently, they are down about 7 percent from last spring.<p>A big part of why housing remains so stunted is that there are more than 2 million "missing households" in the U.S. That's how economists describe the fact that fewer people are striking out on their own to find places to live.<p>Instead of renting an apartment or buying a home, a large number of Americans in their 20s and early 30s are living with family or tripling up with roommates. Wed, 18 Jun 2014 20:37:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 39633 at http://kacu.org Sluggish Housing Market A Product Of Millions Of 'Missing Households' Missing In The Housing Recovery: New Houses http://kacu.org/post/missing-housing-recovery-new-houses More than five years after the crash, homebuilding is stuck at half its normal level. That's a big drag on the economy. And things aren't looking much better: A report out Thursday shows homebuilder confidence is <a href="http://www.nahb.org/news_details.aspx?newsID=16817">at its lowest level in a year</a>.<p>This severe slump in single-family home construction has been going on across the country. We haven't seen anything close to this kind of a long-term construction slump since World War II.<p>"This is a completely unprecedented collapse," says Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. Thu, 15 May 2014 21:37:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 38212 at http://kacu.org Missing In The Housing Recovery: New Houses Amid The Device Hype, This Startup Is Taking Wearables To Heart http://kacu.org/post/amid-device-hype-startup-taking-wearables-heart There's been a lot of talk about <a href="http://www.npr.org/tags/172618814/wearable-devices">wearable devices</a> being the next big thing in the technology world. It's easy for the hype to get ahead of the products, but there's actually some serious innovation going on.<p>"What we're going to see over the next couple years is going to be extremely exciting," says Dan Ledger of Endeavor Partners, which consults with the companies that are inventing wearables. "As the technology improves ... Fri, 02 May 2014 07:41:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 37655 at http://kacu.org Amid The Device Hype, This Startup Is Taking Wearables To Heart Putin's Chess Moves In Ukraine: Brilliant Tactics, But Bad Strategy? http://kacu.org/post/putins-chess-moves-ukraine-brilliant-tactics-bad-strategy The game of chess is a national pastime in Russia. And you might say that Vladimir Putin is playing a high-stakes game of geopolitical chess when it comes to Ukraine.<p>Western leaders are plotting how to counter Putin's latest moves with economic sanctions. So to get some insight into what might come next, we talked to an economist who knows Russia — who is also extremely good at chess.<p><strong>Putin Playing From A Weak Position</strong><p>Kenneth Rogoff is a world-renowned economist and professor at Harvard. Wed, 23 Apr 2014 08:34:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 37253 at http://kacu.org Putin's Chess Moves In Ukraine: Brilliant Tactics, But Bad Strategy? How Do Companies Boost 401(k) Enrollment? Make It Automatic http://kacu.org/post/how-do-companies-boost-401k-enrollment-make-it-automatic More Americans are saving for retirement through their employers' 401(k) programs. That's because in recent years they've been given a strong nudge — more companies are automatically enrolling workers in retirement savings programs.<p>Some firms are also automatically increasing the amount employees contribute. Mon, 21 Apr 2014 07:42:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 37152 at http://kacu.org How Do Companies Boost 401(k) Enrollment? Make It Automatic Onlookers Show No Worry Over Market's Week In Tumult http://kacu.org/post/onlookers-show-no-worry-over-markets-week-tumult Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.<p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>And I'm Audie Cornish. Volatile, that's the kind of week the stock market had. Investors sold off high-flying technology and biotech stocks. Weak bank earnings also added to the sour mix. The NASDAQ is down 8 percent from its peak this year. The S&P 500, it's off 4 percent. Fri, 11 Apr 2014 20:06:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 36800 at http://kacu.org One More Speed Bump For Your Retirement Fund: Basic Human Impulse http://kacu.org/post/one-more-speed-bump-your-retirement-fund-basic-human-impulse Saving for retirement is a challenge facing most Americans. Research shows the challenge is made harder by our basic human impulses. We know we should be saving. But we don't. We consistently make bad financial decisions.<p>One thing that leads us astray is what behavioral economists call "loss aversion." In other words, we hate losing. And that gets in the way of us winning — if winning is making smart financial decisions.<p><strong>How A Smashed Car Is Like A Smashed Nest Egg</strong><p>A few months ago I got rear-ended and my Jeep Cherokee was totaled. It's the first new car I ever bought. Thu, 03 Apr 2014 22:27:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 36468 at http://kacu.org One More Speed Bump For Your Retirement Fund: Basic Human Impulse How Russia's Annexation Of Crimea Could Hurt Its Economy http://kacu.org/post/how-russias-annexation-crimea-could-hurt-its-economy Russian President Vladimir Putin's swift move to annex Crimea is seen as a sign of strength by many Russians, and it has boosted Putin's popularity at home. But when it comes to Russia's economy, many analysts think Russia's prospects are looking weaker.<p>In recent days, we've seen Russians rallying in the streets, waving flags and celebrating Putin's move to reclaim Crimea as part of Russia.<p>And before that, Putin has been active on the world stage, hosting the Olympics and standing up for Russia's interests in Syria. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 21:38:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 36123 at http://kacu.org How Russia's Annexation Of Crimea Could Hurt Its Economy Severe Weather Socks The Economy, But Full Impact Is Unclear http://kacu.org/post/severe-weather-socks-economy-full-impact-unclear The economy often absorbs the impact of snowstorms, such as <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/03/03/285171762/what-a-blast-wicked-winter-storm-spreads-across-nation" target="_blank">this week's storm</a>, without much trouble, but this winter the weather is doing more damage than usual.<p>Sal Sambataro, the manager of Il Cortile in Manhattan, says that when the weather is better, people are packed into the family-owned Italian restaurant. On a recent day, though, the temperature is close to 15 degrees and the doorman wears a furry hat. Tue, 04 Mar 2014 22:46:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 35225 at http://kacu.org Severe Weather Socks The Economy, But Full Impact Is Unclear Grounded And Confounded, Airlines Wait For Storms To Pass http://kacu.org/post/grounded-and-confounded-airlines-wait-storms-pass The snow and ice storms sweeping the East Coast have been felt not only on the ground but in the air, as well. Airlines are cancelling thousands of flights, and both the companies and their passengers have had to deal with the fallout. Thu, 13 Feb 2014 21:12:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 34537 at http://kacu.org Trouble In Emerging Markets Causes Stocks To Take A Tumble http://kacu.org/post/trouble-emerging-markets-causes-stocks-take-tumble Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>Stock prices soared in the past year, but this was a rough week and prices really tumbled today. The Dow lost 318 points, the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ both fell 2.1 percent. This was part of a global sell-off, as investors focus on the growing financial turmoil in the developing world. NPR's Chris Arnold is following this and he joins me now. Chris, the year started off looking like the global economy was more stable. We didn't have a financial crisis unfolding somewhere. So what's going on now?<p>CHRIS ARNOLD, BYLINE: Right. Fri, 24 Jan 2014 22:22:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 33760 at http://kacu.org Small-Batch Distilleries Ride The Craft Liquor Wave http://kacu.org/post/small-batch-distilleries-ride-craft-liquor-wave Wherever you live, you're probably not too far from a local microbrewery making beer. Now, the latest trend is the spread of what you might call "micro-boozeries."<strong> </strong>Craft liquor distilleries are springing up around the country like little wellheads spouting gin, whiskey and rum.<p><a href="http://www.turkeyshoredistilleries.com/" target="_blank">Turkey Shore Distilleries</a> in Ipswich, Mass., is one of them.<p>Co-founder Evan Parker<strong> </strong>boils molasses in a giant, 400-gallon copper kettle to distill what the company calls Old Ipswich Rum. Wed, 22 Jan 2014 22:54:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 33681 at http://kacu.org Small-Batch Distilleries Ride The Craft Liquor Wave Obama Unveils New Plans To Encourage Manufacturing Jobs http://kacu.org/post/obama-unveils-new-plans-encourage-manufacturing-jobs Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. President Obama has been talking a lot lately about income inequality. Today, he visited a factory in North Carolina and announced new steps that he said would create more good-paying, middle class jobs. Wed, 15 Jan 2014 21:56:00 +0000 Chris Arnold 33456 at http://kacu.org