This week's meeting of the Group of Eight industrialized countries concluded with a pledge to end the use of tax shelters by multinational corporations. But there are still big questions about how they will make a dent in the problem.
After initial reports that an asylum-seeker would have to be in Iceland for their application to be considered, the AP says Edward Snowden is in "informal talks" with Iceland about applying for asylum.
During the recession and slow economic recovery, most people seem pretty happy just to have a job. Any job.
But there are some jobs in this economy -- in key parts of it, in fact -- that don't get any love. And so we begin our new series, You hate my job.
Jenny Day is a traffic officer -- she patrols the streets, looking for expired parking meters. And she is good at what she does, and has been doing it for nine years.
She's given out thousands of parking tickets... probably more.
Listen to the full audio above to ride along with her on the job.
A conflict over alcohol is escalating in the tiny town of Whiteclay, Neb., which sells millions of cans of beer annually to residents of the nearby Pine Ridge Reservation. While protesters are trying to block beer deliveries to the town, some tribal leaders are considering legalizing alcohol at Pine Ridge.
Some people exposed to tainted steroid injections in last year's meningitis outbreak had slow-moving spinal infections that escaped detection until they had MRI scans. Many of the people didn't have symptoms, or thought the pain was due to their longstanding back problems.
Last fall, Heather Liljengren was collecting the seeds of New York's native dune grasses. Within days, Hurricane Sandy wiped out the Rockaways' dunes and all their flora. Now, those seeds are growing plants likely to be used to restore the dunes and other natural environments around New York City.
The company did not explain why George Zimmer, who opened the first Men's Warehouse in 1973, was let go. Since the mid-'80s, Men's Warehouse ads have featured Zimmer delivering the company's famous slogan: "You're going to like the way you look. I guarantee it."
The State Department official in charge of the office that monitors and combats human trafficking says slavery affects several industries, including fishing, and several countries, including the U.S. He wants consumers to ask: "How can I actually do something about it?"
Want to know how the justices decide who writes the big opinions? Or when they decide to release them to the public? What about whether the justices hang out after work? Get your answers here.
When Nicholas Rodriguez returned from Afghanistan in 2010, his mother and stepfather had never heard of post-traumatic stress disorder. It was only after Nick killed himself that they learned the warning signs and realized he needed help dealing with his combat experience.
The National Hurricane Center says the second named storm of the 2013 hurricane season is heading west toward southern Mexico.
The prize is sometimes called the "Nobel Prize for food and agriculture." And this year's winners include Monsanto executive Robert Fraley, a pioneer in genetically engineered crops. If there's a single person who personifies the company's controversial role in American agriculture, it's probably Fraley.
A vaccine against a virus that causes cervical cancer has cut infections among teenage girls by over half in the first four years of use, scientists report. Only about one-third of girls in that age group have received the recommended shots.
Shane Harris, an author and journalist who covers intelligence, surveillance and cybersecurity for a number of publications, says that the revelations about the NSA from Edward Snowden are nothing new, and that such programs have a significant recent history in the United States.
The White House and NASA want the public's help in hunting for asteroids that could potentially smash into Earth. They're also looking for a perfect space rock to capture so that astronauts could go there and study it.
The Federal Reserve will continue its program of purchasing $85 billion in securities and will leave the target interest rate for federal funds untouched to support the U.S. economy, the U.S. central bank said in a policy update issued Wednesday afternoon.
At lunch time at Local Projects, a media design firm, it's every person for themselves when it comes to silverware. About 40 workers share the office kitchen. Donna Meredith works here, and she's desperate for a spoon.
“Here I am making some tea,” she says, “and I need to stir it up. So I end up using a knife. Silverware has always been an issue at every office I've worked in.”
Her coworker Miriam Lakes deals with the missing spoon problem another way.
“I tend to hoard one at my desk,” she tells me. “We have this specific kind that are nicer, like heavier weight spoons, that I like to just keep around me.”
And don't even get her started on the missing mugs.
“It's definitely like every two weeks or so,” she laments, “there will be an email. 'Have you seen my mug?' And there will sometimes be a photo of it, or just a detailed description, asking for it back.”
It's not that the design firm's employees are petty. But having to worry about your kitchen objects, at work, it really bothers people. I talked to Alison Green about it. She's a management consultant, and she runs the blog Ask A Manager. She says she hears a lot of grumbling about kitchenware.
“I think,” she says, “it speaks to a larger trend of people feeling like, a sort of care that used to be toward them from their workplaces is increasingly going away.”
That kind of care used to have a face. People like receptionists, and office managers.
“In terms of the percentage of the labor force that works in office administrative support,” says Mike Konczal, an economic research fellow at the Roosevelt Institute, “it's been a decline over the last several decades.”
He says that since the recession hit, U.S. companies have cut about a million office support positions.
“Part of it is technology,” he explains. “It's much easier to you know run your calendar than it was maybe 30 years ago, or simple things like getting a flight or booking a car can be done over your phone.”
But collecting stray silverware? So far that's beyond the realm of current technology.
“There isn't that Rumba yet.” Konczal jokes. “So, once that robot comes maybe things will be different. But for now, you're going to have a lot of people who are just kind of angry in the workplace.”
Back at the design firm, Jenny Kutnow and Miriam Lakes say missing silverware can be annoying, but it's not that big of a deal.
“I think if it came down to whether we could buy a new typeface or buy new silverware,” Kutnow says, “I would vote for the typeface.”
“We'd all just be eating with our hands,” laughs Lakes.
Whitman was at one point known as "America's Favorite Folksinger," but he was far more popular overseas. His music saved the Earth from aliens in the comedy Mars Attacks!
The United Nations says more than 45 million people worldwide are refugees — the most since 1994 — and that nearly half are children. Fleeing Syrians are a growing concern.
Yeah, this is a story where analysts have plenty to say. But a story full of analysts can be kind of boring.
So instead, I called up the perfect, potential, H&M online shopper, 24-year-old Sonya Laws, in Asheville, N.C. “I’m not excited enough to squeal, but I am excited,” she says. Michael Pardot, outside an H&M in Pasadena, Calif., was also amped, “it’s about time; I was waiting for it since they opened up the store.”
Why did it take H&M so long? This is where the analysts come in handy.
“You’ve got complexities in the U.S. in terms of different sales taxes, where you put your distribution centers, how you manage even more sales than you had been planning on with just your individual stores,” says Patty Edwards with Trutina Financial.
She says H&M can’t afford to get it wrong; when you come this late to the party, you’ve got to look good. “They’ve got to be able to offer a turn-key experience that is an excellent experience right off the bat,” says Edwards.
If H&M is able to get it right, Morningstar analyst Jamie Katz says other fast-fashion is going to need to watch out. “H&M is very price cognizant,” Katz says, “they do not like to raise prices and so that means it keeps other retailers on their toes regarding pricing.”
Which could mean cheaper summer dresses for all of us.