National News

Russian Opposition Figure Detained Hours After Suspended Sentence

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 07:25

Alexei Navalny broke his house arrest after he was convicted of fraud and given a 3 1/2-year suspended sentence. Navalny was a leader of the protests by opposition groups in Moscow three years ago.

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Pakistan Detains Suspect In Mumbai Attack A Day After His Ordered Release

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 06:42

Police registered an unrelated kidnapping case against Zaki-ur-Rahman Lakhvi. He is believed to have been the operational chief of a group blamed for the deadly 2008 attack on Mumbai.

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Quiz: Outside the continent, part of the Core

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 04:46
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Rep. Steve Scalise: 'I Went And Spoke To Any Group That Called'

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 04:01

The recently-elected majority whip in the House is explaining his appearance at a gathering of white supremacists. Scalise says when he spoke to the group, he had no knowledge of the ties.

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PODCAST: Consumer confidence trending upwards

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 03:00

Investors in Europe have been moving their portfolios away from risk in the day since it became clear a new general election will occur in Greece in the coming weeks. More on that. Plus, the last snapshot of American consumer confidence for the year came out today. Consumer Confidence rose from November to December. We have context on those statistics. And we'll also talk about the current state of manufacturing jobs in the U.S.

AirAsia Crash: Rescue Crews Pull Bodies, Find Plane Wreckage In Java Sea

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:40

An Indonesian navy spokesman told reporters a ship had recovered dozens of bodies. AirAsia said Indonesia had confirmed the wreckage was that of the Airbus carrying 162 people.

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Consumer confidence on the rise at year's end

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:00

Consumer confidence has been trending upward during 2014, with both the Reuters/University of Michigan survey and the Conference Board survey reflecting a cheerier pre-recession outlook.

“People expect the economy to improve, and their personal finances to improve,” says economist Chris Christopher of IHS Global Insight.

The stock market has recently hit highs, boosting higher-income households, many of which have regained and surpassed their level of wealth before the recession. But middle-income households remain in the red, on average, since the recession. Long-term unemployment is still stubbornly high, wages are barely outpacing inflation, and millions of workers have dropped out of the labor force altogether.

But Bernie Baumohl of the Economic Outlook Group says the overall economic picture is still overwhelmingly favorable: “We’ve got the best job growth that we’ve seen in 14 years. Companies as well as consumers are benefiting from lower gas prices, and from the lowest borrowing costs in history.” Baumohl still cautions that until the global economy gets healthy again and U.S. trading partners rebound, U.S. companies might not feel optimistic enough to go on a big hiring spree or raise wages.

Harbaugh's big Michigan payday

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:00

The University of Michigan announced a deal Tuesday that makes Jim Harbaugh its next head football coach.

 

 

Harbaugh was an All-American quarterback for Michigan and played 15 years in the NFL in addition to coaching at Stanford University and, most recently, with the San Francisco 49ers.

Harbaugh signed a seven-year deal worth $5 million per year plus increases each season. He also received a $2 million signing bonus.

Even though Michigan has fallen as a football powerhouse, Forbes says only Texas and Notre Dame bring in more revenue. 

"From a strictly financial point of view, it's already paid off, they'll make more money off of him by lunch today," says John U. Bacon, an author and commentator.

Bacon has written has written several books about Michigan football. He says the jump in season-ticket sales alone will more than pay Harbaugh’s contract, and if he can revive the storied Michigan-Ohio State rivalry, the entire Big Ten might profit.

"If you get that going, guess what? TV ratings go up. TV drives all of this. Not some of it, all of it," says Bacon.

These days it isn’t just the University of Michigans of the world that are willing to offer pro money to land a coach. More and more Division One teams are willing to pay millions of dollars to satisfy their fans, which was practically unheard of a decade ago.

"You know, really the theme here is brand revival," says Patrick Rishe, a sports economist at Missouri's Webster University.

Michigan essentially had to offer pro-level dollars, Rishe says, partly to compete for a coach of Harbaugh’s ilk, but more importantly, “to also show their fans they're serious about trying to get back into the fray."

The real question all along wasn’t whether Jim Harbaugh was worth the money Michigan was offering, Rishe says, but whether Harbaugh would leave the NFL.

A very merry Christmas for Apple

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:00
$8 million

The University of Michigan is expected to announce Tuesday a deal that would make Jim Harbaugh its next head football coach. In addition to his career on the field, Harbaugh has coached for both Stanford and the San Francisco 49ers. His NFL pedigree will earn him a pro-football salary; some estimates put his expected salary as head coach to be in the range of $6 million to $8 million. 

1 of 2

The parts released so far in the Intercept's exclusive and (ahem) serialized interview with Jay Wilds, a key figure in the investigative podcast "Serial." Host Sarah Koenig couldn't get Wilds on tape in her reporting, but he's speaking out now that "Serial" has concluded its first season, giving his side of the cold case Koenig was exploring.

51.3 percent

In its annual Christmas report, Flurry found that 51.3 percent of devices activated over the holiday were Apple products. This compared with 17.7 percent for Samsung, and 5.8 percent for Nokia, as reported by Tech Crunch.

60 million

The rough number of page views the various sites owned by Emerson Spartz rack up in a month. That's according to a recent New Yorker profile, which paints Spartz as the boy king of "viral content."

94 percent

That's the percentage global investment in Japan is down this year; the smallest annual amount since 2008. As Bloomberg reports, the dwindling numbers are mostly due to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's "Abenomics," which have sent Japan into a recession.

Consumer confidence on the rise at year-end

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:00

Consumer confidence has been trending upward during 2014, with both the Reuters/University of Michigan survey and the Conference Board survey back to pre-recession levels.

“People expect the economy to improve, and their personal finances to improve,” says economist Chris Christopher at IHS Global Insight.

The stock market has recently hit records, boosting higher-income households, many of which have regained and surpassed their level of wealth before the recession. But middle-income households remain in the red, on average, since the recession. Long-term unemployment is still stubbornly high, wages are barely outpacing inflation, and millions of workers have dropped out of the labor force altogether.

But Bernie Baumohl at the Economic Outlook Group says the overall economic picture is still overwhelmingly favorable: “We’ve got the best job growth that we’ve seen in 14 years. Companies as well as consumers are benefiting from lower gas prices, and from the lowest borrowing costs in history.” Baumohl still cautions that until the global economy returns to health and U.S. trading partners rebound, U.S. companies might not feel optimistic enough to go on a big hiring spree or raise wages.

Michigan offers big payday to revive football fortunes

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 02:00

The University of Michigan is expected to announce Tuesday a deal that would make Jim Harbaugh its next head football coach.

Harbaugh was an All-American quarterback for Michigan and played 15 years in the NFL, in addition to coaching at Stanford, and most recently with the San Francisco 49ers.

Harbaugh’s contract is expected to make him among the highest paid coaches in college sports, in the range of $6 million to $8 million per year.

Even though Michigan has fallen as a football powerhouse, Forbes says only Texas and Notre Dame bring in more revenue. 

"From a strictly financial point of view, it's already paid off, they'll make more money off of him by lunch today," says author and commentator John U. Bacon.

Bacon has written has written several books about Michigan football. He says the jump in season-ticket sales alone will more than pay Harbaugh’s contract, and if he can revive the storied Michigan-Ohio State rivalry, the entire Big Ten might profit.

"If you get that going, guess what? TV ratings go up. TV drives all of this. Not some of it, all of it," says Bacon.

These days it isn’t just the University of Michigan's of the world that are willing to offer pro money to land their coach. More and more Division One teams are willing to pay millions of dollars to satisfy their fans, which was practically unheard of a decade ago.

"You know, really the theme here is brand revival," says Patrick Rishe, a sports economist at Webster University.

Rishe says Michigan essentially had to offer dollars, partly to compete for a coach of Harbaugh’s ilk, but more importantly, “to also show their fans they're serious about trying to get back into the fray," he says.

Rishe says the real question all along wasn’t whether Jim Harbaugh was worth the money Michigan was offering, but whether he would leave the NFL.

The state of manufacturing in the states

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-12-30 01:30

Stephan Richter, editor in chief of The Globalist, has a question: What percentage of of U.S. jobs does the manufacturing sector account for today?

But more to the point, are those jobs part of an industry renaissance, or are they a new kind of employment that in reality, is not as good as it sounds?

Richter joined Marketplace Morning Report host David Brancaccio to talk about the danger of heralding the return of manufacturing to the U.S.

Click the media player above to hear more.

 

Searchers Retrieve Six Bodies From Indonesian Waters

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 01:21

The discovery came after several pieces of red, white and black debris were spotted in the Java Sea near Borneo island. AirAsia planes are red and white.

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Here's Why Obama Said The U.S. Is 'Less Racially Divided'

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 01:00

The president says incidents in the past year have "surfaced" long-simmering issues between minority communities and authorities, allowing for a healthy airing of grievances.

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The Fleeting Obsessions Of The White House Press Corps

NPR News - Tue, 2014-12-30 00:03

From the VA and Secret Service scandals to Ebola, each week brought another hot issue into the White House briefing room. Here's a look at just how short the press corps' attention span was in 2014.

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Traffic Stops Persuade People To Avoid Drinking And Driving

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-29 23:58

Everyone knows it's dangerous to drink and drive, but a lot of people still do it. Strict enforcement of traffic laws makes it less likely that people will get behind the wheel when soused.

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Big Question For 2015: Will The Supreme Court Rule On Abortion?

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-29 23:57

States have passed more than 200 abortion regulations since 2010, and the number is expected to rise. Abortion rights supporters say that could cause big geographical variations in access to care.

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A 'Lost Boy' Helps The Girls Of South Sudan Find An Education

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-29 23:56

Daniel Majok Gai fled South Sudan twice because of war. He wants to return for good. But for now, he's giving back by helping youth there gain an education. His inspiration: a girl named Annah.

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Rep. Grimm To Resign After Guilty Plea On Tax Charge

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-29 23:02

In a statement reported by CBS and The Associated Press, Rep. Michael Grimm, R-NY, said he would resign effective Jan. 5. Grimm pleaded guilty last week to filing a false tax return.

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U.S. Warship Joins Hunt For Missing Plane

NPR News - Mon, 2014-12-29 20:06

The search for AirAsia jet is now into its third day with no solid leads. The hunt has expanded to new areas and includes naval ships as well as local fishermen.

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