4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
Business

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 7:25 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Let's consider now, those vehicles that offer something really cheap - the food trucks that have become so popular. At the L.A. Auto Show, Nissan has on display a new truck specially designed for mobile restaurateurs. Our last word in business today is: culinary concept car.

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4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
Business

Big, Small Cars Adorn LA Auto Show

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 7:12 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's Nina Gregory was also looking around the L.A. Auto Show searching for new extremes. She wanted to see some of the biggest offerings automakers had on display this year and also the littlest.

NINA GREGORY, BYLINE: The newest entry to the teeny tiny market is the Chevrolet Spark, a 144-inch four-door.

BRANDY SCHAFFELS: You might like the sound...

(SOUNDBITE OF DOOR SLAMMING)

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4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
Business

Honda Works To Assure Quality Cars

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The Los Angeles Auto Show begins today. It's the first of America's car shows and it's where manufacturers put their best foot forward or try to reinvent themselves. One those carmakers is Honda. Honda's production was badly hurt by Japan's earthquake and tsunami, and as it was getting back on track, the floods in Thailand crippled production again. But as NPR's Sonari Glinton reports from the L.A. Auto Show, natural disasters may be the least of Honda's problems.

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4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
Politics

House Panel Questions Chu About Solyndra Loan

Energy Secretary Steven Chu appeared before a House oversight subcommittee Thursday to defend his agency's decision to lend $500 million in federal money to Solyndra, a company that made solar panels and is now bankrupt. The company is the subject of numerous federal investigations.

4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
Business

Oil Prices Raise Sharply On Improving U.S. Economy

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 7:16 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with oil prices hovering around $99 a barrel. Oil has gone up sharply since last month, partly because of signs of improvement in the U.S. economy. Also because of tensions in some oil producing regions, which could affect supplies. Still, the debt crisis in Europe is holding prices below that psychologically important $100 a barrel mark. Benchmark crude was trading in Asia this morning at about $98.90. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
NPR Story

Italy's New Government Passes 1st Confidence Vote

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 5:33 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Italy's new prime minister has pledged far-reaching reforms. An economist himself, Mario Monti has managed to win a vote of confidence for his new national unity government by an overwhelming majority in Italy's senate. Still, Europe's debt crisis is gathering more steam and now pushing borrowing costs for Spain and France sharply higher. As NPR's Sylvia Poggioli reports, pressure is mounting on the European Central Bank to act to stem the crisis.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

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4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
NPR Story

Penn State Child Sex Abuse Scandal Still Raises Questions

The child sex abuse scandal at Penn State is raising more and more questions about who knew what, when and what actions were, or were not taken. Elements of the unfolding scandal remain quite confusing. Former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is charged with abusing young boys.

4:00am

Fri November 18, 2011
NPR Story

Obama In Bali For East Asia Summit

Transcript

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3:01am

Fri November 18, 2011
Newt Gingrich

To Imagine A Gingrich Presidency, Look To The '90s

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 2:54 pm

In September 1994, then-House Minority Whip Newt Gingrich addressed Republican congressional candidates on Capitol Hill during a rally where they pledged a new "Contract with America." Months later, Republicans gained control of both houses of Congress for the first time in decades, and Gingrich became speaker of the House.
John Duricka AP

Newt Gingrich served as speaker of the House of Representatives for four turbulent and productive years.

From 1995 through 1998, Congress forced a government shutdown, overhauled the welfare system, balanced the budget for the first time in decades and impeached a president for the second time in history.

Gingrich was in the middle of those debates, fiery in his rhetoric, yet willing to compromise and work with a Democratic president.

The 104th Congress

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12:01am

Fri November 18, 2011
Economy

Would Supercommittee Failure Roil Markets?

Originally published on Fri November 18, 2011 4:34 pm

Analysts worry that failure by the supercommittee to reach a credible debt-reduction deal could upset financial markets, force up interest rates and hurt the economy.
Scott Olson Getty Images

With Wednesday's deadline looming, the congressional supercommittee still seems far from an agreement, causing concern that failure could send financial markets into a spiral.

The bipartisan panel, charged with finding budget cuts or new revenues to reduce the deficit by at least $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years, is a child of the summer's debt-ceiling debate. It was an escape hatch for Congress and the president when they couldn't reach agreement on big deficit-reduction measures. That game of chicken helped to send the stock market sliding.

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