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Marketplace with host Kai Ryssdal produced and distributed by American Public Media focuses on the latest business news both nationally and internationally, the global economy, and wider events linked to the financial markets.
The only national daily business news program originating from the West Coast, Marketplace is noted for its timely, relevant and accessible coverage of business, economics and personal finance.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 7:00am
Oil companies find a way to make a profit in spite of low prices. Plus, Shinzo Abe is coming to visit. There will be plenty for him to talk about, but one big item on the agenda is Japan’s currency, which some people say is being manipulated by the Bank of Japan in that country’s favor. How is Japan controlling its currency, and why? And in the years after the housing bubble burst, census data showed that Americans—especially younger Americans—were forgoing suburban life for city living. Millennials, it was said, preferred walkable neighborhoods, public transit, and smaller homes. Now, new census data shows the suburbs are experiencing a revival.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 6:16am
Compare, by race, the percentage of students enrolled in your high school with the percentage enrolled in at least one an AP class.
Enter the name of your public highschool below to find the AP participation gap.
Story: Spending $100 million to break down AP class barriers
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 6:00am
As of this writing, fatalities from Nepal's 7.9 magnitude earthquake have exceeded 4,000, with the number of dead and injured expected to rise as emergency workers reach more remote mountain villages. Millions in the region are affected—with homes damaged or destroyed, and food, water, medical and earthmoving equipment in short supply.
People have been phoning and clicking to make donations to the international relief agency Mercy Corps; they had given $715,000 by mid-day Monday, says spokesman Jeremy Barnicle. “That money will mostly go to procure essential items that people need now,” says Barnicle. “So that’s tarps and sleeping mats, first-aid kits, water bottles, things like that.”
The money is flowing through the Bank of Kathmandu, and is being doled out to local partner organizations by Mercy Corps’ in-country staff of 90, most of whom are Nepali and were already working on long-term development and humanitarian projects. The money, spent primarily in Nepalese rupees, will boost the local economy, helping wholesalers and stores and trucking companies reopen and bring back workers. Aid groups will also use the money to resupply relief depots in the region that are being tapped right now to get material out to hard-hit areas in Nepal.
Bob Ottenhoff, president of the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, says longer-term needs will be harder to meet, with American donors’ short attention span.
“There’ll be lots of people giving in coming days, as long as the media keeps covering the story,” said Ottenhoff. “But it’s very difficult to raise money for planning and preparation and mitigation.”
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 6:00amHigh school students across the country are nervously cramming for Advanced Placement exams, which begin next week. But, there won’t be nearly as many minority and low-income students taking the tests as there could be.
According to the College Board, which runs the AP program, in 2013 about 15 percent of graduating seniors in the U.S. were black. But, black students made up only about 9 percent of AP test takers. That same year — the latest for which reliable comparisons are available — low-income students made up 48 percent of the high school population, but only about 28 percent of AP test takers.
Access to advanced high school courses is only part of the problem. The majority of high schools in the U.S. offer some AP classes. The larger problem, experts say, is participation.
“There are about 650,000 missing students per year — low-income students and students of color — who would participate in advanced courses in their high schools if given the opportunity to participate at the same rate as other students,” says Reid Saaris, president of Equal Opportunity Schools, a non-profit that works with schools to increase that opportunity.
EOS is among a group of education and business organizations spearheading a $100 million spend aimed at getting more under-represented students into AP and International Baccalaureate classes. The initiative, announced Tuesday, aims to identify and enroll 100,000 new students during the next three years.
In a prepared statement, Trevor Packer, senior vice president of AP and instruction at the College Board, said opportunity is a "clear, undeniable benefit awarded to every student who enrolls in AP."
"When coupled with a student’s hard work, that opportunity can have myriad outcomes, whether it is learning to craft an effective argument, discovering a lifelong passion, building confidence, earning credit for college or persisting to graduate college on time. We’re proud to play a role in expanding access to challenging work," Packer says.
Research shows high-achieving minority and low-income students are often overlooked when it comes to AP and IB programs. Saaris cites several reasons, including perceptions by educators that certain students are not "right" for advanced classes, and a lack of information among parents and students about AP or IB.
Natalie Rodriguez Jansorn, director of strategic initiatives for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, which is helping fund the $100 million project, says students who participate in AP courses are more likely to enroll in college, and succeed when they get there.
“In particular, we know that there are a significant number of low-income students who are not even being invited or encouraged into AP courses," she says.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 6:00am
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is visiting the U.S. this week, and on his agenda: negotiations for a trade deal between the U.S. and Japan, along with ten other countries. One potential sticking point is the way Japan handles its currency. For the last few years, Japan has pumped more currency into circulation, saying it wants to flight deflation.
“But everyone knows that behind that is definitely a business community that’s has complained for many years that the value of yen too strong,” says Scott Seaman, a senior analyst with the Eurasia Group.
Many Japanese exporters would prefer a weaker yen, so Japan goods become cheaper relative to competitors in other countries. That is why this a trade issue, says Eswar Prasad, an economics professor at Cornell.
“Some people in the U.S. are concerned that by opening U.S. markets, and by tolerating other countries' policies that drive down the values of their currencies, the U.S. might lose out,” he says.
Audio for this story is forthcoming.
March 31, 2015