Marketplace for March 19, 2008

Episode Description 

March Madness drives employers crazy

For the first year ever, college hoops fans can catch all of the men's NCAA Division I tournament live on the Web -- great news for fans stuck at work, but employers are likely to see a major drop in productivity. Stacey Vanek-Smith reports on how one company is dealing with the mania.
Posted In: Entertainment, Jobs, Sports

Critical condition: Nurse shortage peaks

More than one-third of nurses born during the baby boom plan to retire or change jobs sometime in the next three years. Add in the chronic shortage of nurses already, and hospitals could be left in critical condition. Ashley Milne Tyte reports.
Posted In: Health, Jobs

Forgetful Fed repeats errors of the past

Just like today, the early 1970s were also a time of accelerated inflation and rising commodities prices. Commentator David Frum says the Fed is now repeating the mistakes it made in the early '70s -- mistakes which ultimately led to a recession.
Posted In: Economy

Will Vermont cash in by selling lottery?

Many states are struggling with lean budgets this year. Now Vermont's governor wants to make ends meet by selling or leasing the state's lottery to a private company. But some lawmakers worry about the long-term effect of giving up control of a state money-making asset. John Dillon reports.
Posted In: Economy

Accounting for the Iraq war

After five years in the war in Iraq, estimates of the monetary costs range from several hundred billion dollars to trillions of dollars. Kai Ryssdal talks to University of Chicago economics professor Steven Davis about how to truly assess the cost of the war.

Mortgage rates rise despite Fed cuts

Though the Fed cut interest rates dramatically, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate has gone up since the beginning of January. Jeremy Hobson reports why banks aren't interested in dropping rates for long-term loans.
Posted In: Economy, Housing

Fannie, Freddie regulations eased

The federal government already raised the limit on loans mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can underwrite. Today's move to relax capital requirements on loans is designed to quickly free up $200 billion in more financing. John Dimsdale reports.
Posted In: Housing, Investing, Wall Street

Stearns investors bear a grudge

The JPMorgan buyout of Bear Stearns seems to have appeased the markets, but it also angered many Stearns shareholders. Now some are suing, claiming Stearns execs hid the firm's true financial condition and failed to properly manage risk. Bob Moon reports.
Posted In: Crime, Economy, Investing

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