News In Brief

MIDDAY UPDATE: Vatican financial transparency, NASA budget woes, and beer baths

Katharine Crnko Dec 30, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI is working to make the Vatican’s financial operations more transparent amid a financial investigation involving its bank. The pope today signed a document requiring the Vatican Bank to comply with international regulations to fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The Vatican Bank is under investigation for money laundering.

And Congress’s failure to pass a budget in the lame-duck session means NASA is obligated to spend $500 million on a canceled program. President Obama announced his intentions to scrap Ares I — a rocket that would use solid fuel to take the spacecraft into orbit — before Congress ended its session without a revised budget. The old budget will continue through March 2011, and so will funding for the now defunct Ares I project.

Finally there’s a new way to enjoy your beer in the bath — by soaking in a bath of beer. The German town of Neuzelle is famous for its brewing history, which includes developing a beer bath therapy for spas. Don’t miss the slideshow!

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.