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The Source Code: Brad Katsuyama

Sep 19, 2018

When the financial crisis of 2008 hit, Brad Katsuyama worked on Wall Street as an investor for the Royal Bank of Canada. For some time, he'd noticed odd trends in the way his trades were executed and traced the cause back to the growing influence of high-frequency trading and its growing influence on the stock market. Looking for ways to counter the influence of HFT, he and his partners created IEX, Investors Exchange, in 2012.

(U.S. Edition) The top trade officials for U.S. and Canada are back at the negotiating table for the NAFTA overhaul a month after the U.S. and Mexico ironed out a preliminary deal. We look at what it might take for Canada to get on board. Also, this week, we’re 10 years away from the financial crisis that erupted after the collapse of Lehman Brothers. We talked to the two people who pushed the massive financial reform law through Congress: Former Congressman Barney Frank and former Sen.

China defends retaliation to U.S. tariffs

Sep 19, 2018

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … At the world economic forum in China, officials on Tuesday morning defended the country's economic policies after the latest round of tariffs with the U.S. Liberia – the west African country founded by freed American slaves – has launched an investigation to trace $100 million worth of newly printed notes that have vanished. Sri Lanka's Hambantota port cost about $1.5 billion, but already the country is concerned it will not be able to pay back the money it borrowed from China to build it.

The business case for a stock market speed bump

Sep 19, 2018

Marketplace Tech is exploring investment technology as part of the Divided Decade project on the financial crisis of 2008. Brad Katsuyama started a new stock exchange, IEX, in 2012, with an aim to neutralize some impacts of high-frequency trading.

Consumers may not link tariffs and higher prices

Sep 18, 2018

How much do you pay attention to fluctuations in the prices of stuff you buy? There are new tariffs coming on some $200 billion worth of goods from China. They'll start with a 10 percent tariff Monday and climb to a 25 percent tariff in the new year. Today, China immediately promised to retaliate with tariffs on $60 billion worth of American goods. Tit for tat and all that.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

Driving up to a trailhead just a few miles from the US-Mexico border in Arizona’s Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, biologist Rosemary Schiano’s first advice is to cover our spare water gallons.

“People will break into your car if they see water, especially in this heat,” she says.

It’s just past 8 a.m. and the temperature in this part of the Sonoran Desert is already climbing above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Arroyos slice into a mountainous expanse laden with Organ Pipe’s namesake cactus.

It's use-it-or-lose-it season in Washington

Sep 18, 2018

Congress is making some progress on spending bills for fiscal year 2019, which starts October first. But, while lawmakers fight over next year's budget, federal agencies are still struggling to  spend all the money they got this year, because what they don't use by the end of the month, Congress takes back. So cue the September spending spree, which has become so routine, many agencies plan for it. Up to a point, anyway. 

Use-it-or-lose-it season

Sep 18, 2018

China and the U.S. traded more tariffs since just yesterday, and many companies have said they’ll pass the cost onto consumers. So when can Americans expect a price hike? We'll talk about it, and interview a tile industry spokesman who supports the tariffs. Then: With the budget expiring at the end of the month, federal agencies are hurrying to spend their budgets before time runs out. Some are taking things down to the literal last minute. Plus, hard truths with rapper and author Dessa.

82: This is your brain on VR

Sep 18, 2018

Decades after it was first introduced, virtual reality finally feels like it’s on the precipice of enormous potential. And it’s not all entertainment — VR could change the way we go to work, communicate with loved ones or train ourselves to deal with difficult situations. But that got one of our listeners wondering: Who’s thinking about the drawbacks? We put that to Jeremy Bailenson. He’s the founding director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab. He’s a big proponent of VR and yes, he’s been pondering the scary stuff we haven’t even thought of.

The traffic in the tiny German neighborhood of Kolzenburg was mostly cyclists and sparrows when Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) state representative Birgit Bessin drove into town with a blue trailer hitched to her white Mercedes earlier this month.

Bessin isn't facing elections this year, but she says she is criss-crossing her district to get a feel for what voters are thinking.

“We want to speak to persons from the tiny, small, sweet villages who perhaps don’t come to our events in other states,” she says.

(Markets Edition) With both the Trump administration and China announcing rounds of tariffs on each others’ goods, retail stores in the U.S. are keeping an even closer eye on what could happen next, especially if Trump follows through on a plan to essentially tax everything from China. We also talk to an economist for more. Also, we look to the toll that summer heat has had on farm workers, as they are 20 times more likely to die of heat-related illnesses.

After Hurricane Maria cause widespread destruction in the Caribbean last September, colleges and universities from New York to Florida offered free or discounted tuition to Puerto Rican students whose home institutions were closed after the storm.

One of the first students to take advantage of the offer was Rosamari Palerm, who enrolled at Miami’s St. Thomas University at the end of September and moved into her new dorm room just a few days later.

José Saldaña is one of the very last of Puerto Rico’s 3.3 million residents to get power back after last fall’s hurricanes.

It was finally restored Friday morning, more than 11.5 months after it first went out and more than a week after the island’s power authority announced electricity had been fully restored across the island. 

When The World visited his home and business in El Yunque National Forest in mid-August, Saldaña, who everyone calls Tonty, was clearly agitated about having lived without power for almost a year.  

There’s a dimly lit convenience store in the mountains of western Puerto Rico where an 82-year-old man sits behind the counter ringing up snacks and sodas.

Luis Ruiz, who has watery blue eyes and a white beard, wishes he were somewhere else: outside in the sun, tending the coffee plants he farmed for decades.

“I’ve been here for 55 years. But now I can’t continue because of Maria,” Ruiz said. “I lost everything: the coffee, bananas, the oranges. I lost everything.”

Rapper Dessa on hard truths about life as a touring artist

Sep 18, 2018

Dessa is a rapper, singer, writer and member of the Minneapolis-based hip-hop collective Doomtree. She talked with Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal about making a living as a touring musician and her new book "My Own Devices: True Stories from the Road on Music, Science and Senseless Love." Dessa said she's had to hustle and sacrifice to make life work as an artist. "I have earned the dark circles this year," she said.

Coca-Cola reportedly exploring cannabis-infused beverages

Sep 18, 2018

Coca-Cola and cannabis could be coming to a beverage label near you.

China on Tuesday announced a tariff hike on $60 billion of U.S. products in response to President Donald Trump's latest duty increase in a dispute over Beijing's technology policy. 

The announcement followed a warning by an American business group that a "downward spiral" in their conflict appeared certain following Trump's penalties on $200 billion of Chinese goods.

Why we don't bury our power lines underground

Sep 18, 2018

Hurricane Florence has brought severe power outages to the Carolinas and Virginia, affecting hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses. We saw the same in Florida and Puerto Rico during last year’s hurricane season. It's the result of downed power lines. One solution? Bury the power lines away from wind and trees instead. But that may be easier said — and cheaper — than done.

Click on the audio player above to hear more. 

Is Coca-Cola looking into cannabis-infused drinks?

Sep 18, 2018

(U.S. Edition) With the Trump Administration unleashing a new round of import penalties on Chinese goods, China has pledged to retaliate. We examine what the next moves could be for both countries. Also, are drinks with CBD — a non-psychoactive chemical in marijuana — on the way? There are reports that Coke could be looking into cannabis-infused drinks.

China vows U.S. tariff revenge

Sep 18, 2018

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Salmon, soap and steel wire. Just three of the items on President Trump’s new $200 billion round of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports. We look at how Beijing will respond. Then, a report commissioned by the U.K. government has recommended making it easier for highly skilled workers to come to the U.K. Finally, experts claim turning the clocks back an hour this fall will lead to lazy workers and more accidents.

When you conjure an image of the stock market, it's likely the tumultuous floor on Wall Street with traders holding a phone to either ear, scrambling and yelling. But computer algorithms make most trades today, within fractions of a second, and you could say the real NYSE action is in Mahwah, New Jersey, where its data center sits. Marketplace Tech is exploring investment technology as part of the Divided Decade project on the financial crisis of 2008.

Marketplace Tech is spending all week looking at the risks technology can introduce to investing. Today, part one of a look at high-frequency trading. Critics of too much high-frequency trading say it makes markets vulnerable to manipulation, and the algorithms that fuel it can cause abrupt dips and rises in stock prices.

Canada's Aluminum Valley grapples with U.S. tariffs

Sep 17, 2018

Canada’s Aluminum Valley is a two-hour drive north of Quebec City, in the region of Saguenay—Lac-Saint-Jean. Five aluminum smelters along a 50-mile stretch of the Saguenay River account for almost half of Canada’s aluminum production.

This has residents here following negotiations between Canada and the United States over a new North American Free Trade Agreement especially closely, with hopes an accord will clear the way to lifting tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum in place since June.

Time magazine may have time on its side now

Sep 17, 2018

Marc and Lynne Benioff will pay $190 million for the magazine. The founder of Salesforce and his wife join a growing list of tech billionaires investing their new money in legacy media properties.

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

Trump imposes tariffs on $200 billion more of Chinese goods

Sep 17, 2018

The Trump administration is imposing tariffs on $200 billion more in Chinese goods starting next week, escalating a trade war between the world’s two biggest economies and raising prices on consumer goods ranging from handbags to bicycle tires.

The tariffs will start at 10 percent and rise to 25 percent starting Jan. 1.

President Donald Trump decided to begin taxing the imports — equal to nearly 40 percent of goods China sold the United States last year — after a public comment period. China has said it’s ready to impose retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.

What it takes to thrive in a constantly changing workplace

Sep 17, 2018

After spending 27 years with General Electric, Beth Comstock knows how to face change. The first woman to serve as vice chair at the company, she guided GE through some of the business world’s most difficult moments of change — breakthroughs, like the development of the internet and social media, and challenges, like the financial crisis and Sept. 11.

Tender Greens CEO weighs in on retail and food service

Sep 17, 2018

Tender Greens is a Los Angeles-based fast casual restaurant chain that you may not have heard of, but there's a good chance that the chain is hoping to come to a city near you. Operating in the competitive fast-casual sector of the restaurant industry, the chain wants to double its stores in the next several years, according to CEO Denyelle Bruno.

This post was updated on Sept. 17, 2018, at 4:25 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time.

The morning rush had slowed to a trickle at Los Angeles' main subway terminal, Union Station, but two police officers were still surveying the commuters on the escalator; first, with their eyes; then, through a laptop screen on top of a large black box on wheels.

“We wanted this to be obvious,”said Susan Walker, head of physical security for the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority, standing nearby.

(Markets Edition) The president on Monday morning tweeted about the “strong bargaining position” granted by tariffs, and that “cost increases have thus far been almost unnoticeable.” There are also more retaliatory threats from China. Then, we look at body-scanning technology, which will debut in Los Angeles in November. Could other cities follow suit? Also, we look at Monday night’s Emmys and how NBC is under pressure to boost ratings for the awards show.