Money Talking

Money Talking

From WNYC Radio

New Yorkers crave informed and intelligent business and economic news. WNYC's Money Talking brings you just that with lively conversations that go beyond the headlines and the jargon to explore the most important business stories of the week. Every Friday join Jeff Greenfield as he hosts regular WNYC contributors Joe Nocera (The New York Times) and Rana Foroohar (Time). Context, conversation and insight. That's WNYC's Money Talking.More from Money Talking »

Most Recent Episodes

The Murky Future of Financial Regulations and Consumer Protections

Many Republicans in Congress have spent years fighting to roll back or abolish the Dodd-Frank Act, enacted after the 2008 recession to rein in risky behavior in the financial industry and to end "too big to fail." Now that President Donald Trump is in charge, those opposed to the law are acting. Among the most reviled parts of Dodd-Frank was the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or CFPB. Republican senator David Perdue from Georgia and Representative Jeb Hensarling have gone as far as calling it a rogue agency at odds with the very meaning of America. Last week, Texas Senator Ted Cruz introduced a bill to eliminate the CFPB. This week on Money Talking, Charlie Herman takes a look at the future of financial regulations and the CFPB with Gillian B. White, senior associate editor at The Atlantic.

Trump Tax Cuts on the Horizon

Among the projects that are big on President Donald Trump's to-do list are repealing Obamacare, spending about a trillion dollars on the country's infrastructure and cutting taxes. But it's looking like the first two goals might take longer than expected, even with a Republican majority in Congress. House Republicans have yet to introduce a replacement for the Affordable Care Act (though there might be a bill coming after the congressional break), and the president hasn't offered spending specifics for his infrastructure plan. So, with the support of Republican legislators who have long been looking to slash taxes, reforms could be coming this year. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman takes a look at the probability of tax reform and its possible effects with Rick Newman, a columnist with Yahoo Finance and Rana Foroohar, global economic columnist for the Financial Times.

The Future of Net Neutrality

Ajit Pai, President Donald Trump's choice to lead the Federal Communications Commission, is taking a page from his boss' book and moving quickly to roll back regulations. In the process, he's raising questions about the future of equal access to the internet. That equal access is known as "net neutrality." Pai's actions, within days of becoming chairman — plus previous comments he made when he was a commissioner at the FCC during the Obama administration — have consumer advocates worried. Previously, the FCC had approved nine companies to provide low-income people with discounted internet service, but he reversed that decision, saying it had been rushed through before the election. But he has also taken steps that could increase transparency at the independent agency, which regulates television, radio, cable and wireless service. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman discusses the new chairman and the future of internet access with Cecilia Kang of The New York Times and Brian Fung with The Washington Post.

Should CEOs Play Politics Too?

First, Twitter erupted with calls to #BoycottUber. Then came similar demands to #BoycottStarbucks. Both were responses from either side of the political aisle after President Donald Trump's executive order temporarily blocking immigration from seven Muslim-majority nations. Two weeks into the new administration, it seems like CEO's of the country's biggest companies are under pressure to declare political alliances and take moral stands, or risk public outrage. But businesses not only respond to consumers, they're also affected by employees, shareholders and, yes, the government. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman discusses whether business and politics should remain separate and the role CEO's will play in the coming years with Sheelah Kolhatkar of The New Yorker and Joe Nocera of Bloomberg View.

While Trump Takes on Trade, Automation Goes Ignored

President Donald Trump is taking aim at what he considers the culprits of the nation's disappearing jobs: international trade agreements and fleeing U.S. companies. This week, Trump signed a memo withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and met with the CEO's of companies like General Motors and Whirlpool to discuss keeping jobs stateside. But technology, not globalization, may be having a bigger effect on the workforce. A recent McKinsey Global Institute report found over half of job activities are susceptible to automation. (That's not actual jobs, but what people do at their jobs: like data processing or product assembly.) This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman discusses how new technologies are changing the workforce, and what's being done about it, with Claire Cain Miller, a reporter with "The Upshot" for the New York Times.

What to Expect From Trump's Economic Team

The businessmen President-elect Donald Trump picked to lead the country's economic team testified before the Senate in their confirmation hearings this week, giving a preview of how they might run the county's finances, and whether they're in line with the policies of their soon-to-be boss. During his hearing, Commerce Secretary nominee Wilbur Ross, who made money buying and then later selling failing businesses, told senators he wasn't against international trade, but he would consider tariffs that ensured the U.S. didn't get the short end of the deal. Treasury Secretary nominee Steven Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs backer, said that while he wasn't against regulation, he was for loosening limits on banks, especially small to medium-sized ones. This week on Money Talking, Charlie Herman takes a look what the hearings revealed about Trump's picks with Sheelah Kolhatkar of The New Yorker and Jesse Eisinger of ProPublica.

The Economy Obama Leaves Behind

It might be hard to remember what it felt like back in January 2009 when Barack Obama became the nation's 44th president: Wall Street and the auto industry needed billion dollar bailouts, the Dow Jones hovered around 8,000 and the unemployment rate was steadily rising — reaching 10 percent at the end of the year. With just over a week left before the end of his administration, President Obama summed up the past eight years in a farewell speech in Chicago and, no surprise, the economy was a central topic. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman discusses the state of the economy Obama is handing over to president-elect Donald Trump with Gillian B. White, senior associate editor at The Atlantic.

Bumpy Road Ahead for Trump and the Federal Reserve

The Federal Reserve says there is "considerable uncertainty" understanding how president-elect Donald Trump's proposed policies of tax cuts and infrastructure spending will affect the U.S. economy. In the minutes released Wednesday from the bank's most recent policy meeting in December, participants said "it was too early to know what changes in these policies would be implemented and how such changes might alter the economic outlook." One concern is rising inflation. Should that happen, it's very likely the Federal Reserve will try to tamp down rising prices through higher interest rates. And if higher rates slow down economic growth, that in turn might not please the new President. When Trump was a candidate, he often criticized the chair of the Federal Reserve for keeping rates low during President Obama's time in office. "Janet Yellen, for political reasons, is keeping interest rates so low that the next guy or person who takes over as president could have a real problem," Trump told Bloomberg News. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman talks with James Surowiecki from the New Yorker and Catherine Ramped with the Washington Post about the possible conflicts between the new President and the bank, and what it means for the economy and consumers.

The Year That Challenged Elites

This was the year that defied predictions — the United Kingdom did indeed vote to leave the European Union, Donald Trump will be the country's 45th president and the stock market is soaring. With the economy still going steady (GDP increased at rate of 3.5 percent and consumer spending is up), the incoming president's challenge will be to keep growth strong. And with Germany, France and the Netherlands holding elections next year, the future of the European Union remains murky. This week on Money Talking, host Charlie Herman looks at some of the biggest business and economic trends of 2016, and what's in store for the next year, with Rob Cox from Reuters Breaking Views and Rana Foroohar, author of "Makers & Takers: The Rise of Finance & the Fall of American Business."

The State of American Jobs in the Age of Amazon

This week, Amazon revealed plans for a brick and mortar convenience store without checkout lines — customers just swipe an app as they walk in, get what they need and then leave. The move may very well be part of the company's plan to dominate every inch of consumers' lives. But it also reflects the country's overall trend toward automation, leaving the incoming president to deal with more than offshoring when it comes to saving jobs. This week on Money Talking, Rick Newman of Yahoo Finance and Timothy Lee of Vox take a look at the future of retailing and what it means for jobs.

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