The Road to Ruin? - Most Commented

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A little optimism on the economic road

Apr 17, 2009
Marketplace's Tess Vigeland and Amy Scott have been revisiting many of the places they hit last fall to see how people are coping with the downturn. They speak to Kai Ryssdal about whether people, like an Ohio car salesman, are now feeling more optimistic or worse about the economy.

Are college students credit-conscious?

Apr 17, 2009
College is the place most people first experience using credit. As part of the series Road To Ruin, Tess Vigeland asks students at Washington University in St. Louis, Mo. about their credit knowledge.
Posted In: Education

Nothing too hairy in barbershop's view

Apr 16, 2009
Marketplace's Tess Vigeland revisits a barbershop in Jefferson City, Mo., where six months ago the owner and his customers were taking market woes in stride. Not much has changed, except they really don't like those bailouts.

The unfulfilled promise of Youngstown

Apr 15, 2009
Six months ago people in Youngstown, Ohio, were abuzz about the Chevy Cruze being built in a nearby plant. Marketplace's Amy Scott checks in to see how residents are coping now that GM is near bankruptcy and the unemployment rate is nearing 14%.

Charlotte retirees hold on to optimism

Apr 14, 2009
Marketplace's Amy Scott revisits members of a coffee klatch she met six months ago in Charlotte, N.C. Some of the folks have avoided investment losses while others have seen their portfolios hit hard. All hope to see the markets recover.

Lincoln family dodges economic bullet

Apr 14, 2009
Marketplace's Tess Vigeland checks in with the Landis-McKibben family, six months after she first visited them at their Nebraska home. They feel lucky to have kept their jobs, but the parents may have to delay retirement.

Charlotte investors reflect on the Dow

Apr 14, 2009
Amy Scott revisited a Panera Bread in Charlotte, N.C., where she spoke with senior investors six months ago about their response to the dropping Dow. She garners reactions in this installment of the "Road to Ruin?"
Posted In: Investing

On the road again with Tess and Amy

Apr 13, 2009
Marketplace's Tess Vigeland and Amy Scott are back traveling the country, seeing how people they met six months ago are holding up in this recession. They talk with Kai Ryssdal from Salt Lake City and Charlotte, N.C.

Last stops on the 'Road to Ruin?'

Oct 10, 2008
Tess Vigeland and Amy Scott hook up with Kai Ryssdal in St. Louis, at the end of their road trips through the Main Streets of America. So, has Wall Street put the country on the Road to Ruin?
Posted In: Economy, Travel

I made it too!

Oct 9, 2008
I guess I lose the race. You beat me here, Tess, and I only drove 1640 miles. That feels like plenty!...

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About this collection

Some of America's best known companies and largest temp agencies benefit from — and tacitly collaborate with — an underworld of labor brokers,  known as "raiteros," who charge temp workers fees for transporation and other services. The result? Workers earn pay below minimum wage.  We explore the system at work in Chicago’s main Latino neighborhood, Little Village, in this special investigation with ProPublica and the Marketplace Wealth and Poverty Desk.