Marketplace Every weekday, host Kai Ryssdal helps you make sense of the day's business and economic news — no econ degree or finance background required. "Marketplace" takes you beyond the numbers, bringing you context. Our team of reporters all over the world speak with CEOs, policymakers and regular people just trying to get by.
Marketplace

Marketplace

From Marketplace

Every weekday, host Kai Ryssdal helps you make sense of the day's business and economic news — no econ degree or finance background required. "Marketplace" takes you beyond the numbers, bringing you context. Our team of reporters all over the world speak with CEOs, policymakers and regular people just trying to get by.

Most Recent Episodes

In case you forgot: COVID still runs this economy

The coronavirus omicron variant caused stock market jitters on Friday. While the strain's impact on global health remains to be seen, if omicron is similar to the delta wave, we can expect travel and consumer spending to take a big hit. How it might affect inflation is unclear. Plus: Black Friday spending is up but still below pre-pandemic levels; millennials are sidelined in the homebuying market; and schools prepare to use federal pandemic relief.

Next-day delivery is so pre-pandemic. Cue ultra-fast delivery.

Whereas next- or same-day delivery services transformed the way people shopped at the height of the pandemic, there's a new kid in town: companies that will deliver an order in under 20 minutes. While the services have made it to densely populated urban areas in the United States, the market is particularly booming in the United Kingdom. Victoria Craig takes us to London, where — for super-fast delivery apps — competition is fierce, investment is booming and pathways to long-lasting profit are uncertain. Plus: The Weekly Wrap, a sky-high battle for 5G and a Black Friday look at consumer spending.

Bemidji, Minnesota has paid teleworkers to move there. How is it playing out?

At the height of the pandemic, dozens of small communities saw an opportunity to recruit people who could work from anywhere — by paying them to move. Today, Dan Kraker takes us to Bemidji, Minnesota, where a program offers people $2,500 to telework there. The solution has proved mutually beneficial, offering newcomers a slower, more budget-friendly pace of life while helping a smaller town grow. Plus: The glass bottle shortage comes to a liquor store near you, the 30th anniversary of a major economic database and the young engineer behind an operations-friendly headscarf.

Bemidji, Minnesota has paid teleworkers to move there. How is it playing out?

Inflation and unemployment stats tell a complicated story

We got a feast of economic figures the day before Thanksgiving: First-time unemployment claims are at a 52-year low. But a key index shows inflation is at a 31-year high. Consumer spending is up too, yet consumer sentiment is at its lowest point in a decade. What the heck is going on? On today's show, we'll tell you how the economic recovery can look anything but linear. We'll also hear about the big number of small-scale labor actions, the infrastructure bill's potential impact on holiday travel routes and a new initiative by the Department of Labor aimed at assisting home care workers.

Biden's release of oil reserves is unlikely to ease gas prices

Gas prices are high ahead of holiday travel. To address oil costs, President Joe Biden announced Tuesday that he would tap into oil reserves and release 50 million barrels. But energy analysts say consumers likely won't feel relief at the pump. Also on today's show: Luxury stores keep malls afloat; how the shipping container came to be; and residents of Boquillas, Mexico, get creative to survive pandemic border closures.

What Jerome Powell's renomination means for Fed policy

President Joe Biden announced today that he will nominate Jerome Powell for a second term as Federal Reserve chair. Progressive Democrats were hoping Biden would nominate board member Lael Brainard, whom he instead picked for vice chair. The decision indicates a "business as usual" stance amid the economic recovery and spiking inflation. Also: We examine why Target's nearly 2,000 stores will no longer stay open on Thanksgiving Day, unpack the Deere strike and its impact on farmers and look at businesses filling the void in China's mental health care sector.

Postponing a blockbuster comes at a hefty cost

As COVID-19 shuttered movie theaters across the country, production companies had few options: release films directly to streaming platforms or hold off on movie releases until the pandemic dust settles. But pressing the pause button can mean multibillion-dollar losses. In today's episode, we hear from Vulture reporter Chris Lee about how even blockbuster films that are delayed may struggle to break even. Also: The Weekly Wrap; pharmacy chains eye the primary health care market; and even small retailers are getting a head start on holiday shopping.

Korean pop culture has taken the world by storm. And not by accident.

The success of releases like "Squid Game," "Parasite" and the boom of K-pop is no coincidence. It's the result of South Korea's decades-long investment in film, television and music. Today, Marketplace's Kristin Schwab takes a look at how Korean entertainment has become a $10 billion economic powerhouse. Plus: A chat with Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic about expectations and reality in economic recovery; why recent employment numbers are subject to so much revision; and surprising Census stats show relocations at an historic low.

Small businesses attempt a new balancing act

Big-box retailers like Home Depot, Target and Walmart are well stocked and ready to go for the holiday season. But for smaller retailers and businesses, inflation and supply chain issues are packing a real double whammy. Many are having to balance price increases that won't alienate customers with creative solutions in order to protect their bottom line. They're doing things like slimming down selections, cutting hours or adding storage space. We'll also hear about the Forest Service's plans for prescribed burns, what needs to happen to meet President Joe Biden's EV charging infrastructure goals, and how Netflix is showing off its streaming-service might.

Inflation sure hasn't stopped consumer spending

The Commerce Department released figures on October retail spending today, and ka-ching! Retail sales jumped 1.7% from September, but inflation accounted for about half of that gain. Still, spending was up for electronics, groceries and gas as consumers tried to get a jump on holiday shopping. Later in the show: China has a long way to go in fulfilling U.S. purchasing agreements; workers are returning to offices, but not necessarily in downtown settings; and what the study of wait lines can teach us about supply chain issues.