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Mitchell Hartman

Senior Reporter

SHORT BIO

I am a staff reporter for Marketplace covering the economy, economic indicators, employment, labor and workforce.

What was your first job?

I had a job every summer during college running the receiving dock in a large sheet metal factory in North Jersey that made cans. My first job in journalism was as an editorial clerk at the Philadelphia Inquirer after graduating college in 1985.

What do you think is the hardest part of your job that no one knows?

Marketplace has among the tightest deadlines and the most demanding expectations for daily news stories of any national public radio newsroom IMHO.

What advice do you wish someone had given you before you started this career?

If you love your job, stick with it. If you're really good at something, keep doing it.

In your next life, what would your career be?

Bodhisattva (in the Mahayana Buddhist tradition, a being on the brink of enlightenment who could end the cycle of rebirth and gain nirvana but chooses to return out of compassion for other beings). Seriously, if I came back in a next life, it would confirm this teaching and I would care more about being in harmony with the universe than having another career. If I had to choose a career (and just be a bodhisattva on the side, I guess), I'd be a public radio reporter again.

Fill in the blank: Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy you ______.

Tickets.

What is something that everyone should own, no matter how much it costs?

Health insurance.

What’s something that you thought you knew but later found out you were wrong about?

Being a parent would constrain my choices and box me in. It did, but I didn't care.

What’s your most memorable Marketplace moment?

Emceeing a Sotheby's auction of literary memorabilia from the Beat Generation — I sold Jack Kerouac's last shot glass for high six figures. (As David Brancaccio was oft-required to say on air after segments like this: “It was a joke!”)

What’s the favorite item in your workspace and why?

Eve Epstein, my former editor and now office mate in the Marketplace Portland bureau at All Classical Portland.

Latest Stories from Mitchell (1,443)

Business inventories decline, the largest dip since 2017

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 16, 2020
It could mean the economy's hot and stuff is flying off the shelf. Or it could mean spending is down.
Businesses are being careful to not stock up too much inventory.
George Frey/Getty Images

Unaffordable housing and slower job growth go hand in hand

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 15, 2020
The National Association of Realtors finds that metro areas with declining home affordability have less job growth.
Cate Gillon/Getty Images

FICO scores rose to record high in 2019

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 13, 2020
Nearly six in 10 Americans now have a FICO score at or above 700, which is considered "good" credit.
Damien Meyer/AFP via Getty Images

Where's the wage growth?

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 10, 2020
In December, wage gains slowed from earlier in 2019, with average hourly earnings up 2.9% year over year.
Women protest for higher wages for fast food workers on March 18, 2014, in New York City.
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Wages grew faster in past expansions

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 10, 2020
When unemployment is low, wages typically shoot up. But wages are growing more slowly than they did 20 years ago.
Even though unemployment is at a 50 year low, wages have room to grow. Above, a Fight for 15 protest in New York.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Will job growth hold up in 2020?

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 9, 2020
The December jobs report from the Labor Department will cap off a year of decent job growth coupled with declining unemployment.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Fewer NYC evictions after tenant rights are beefed up

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 8, 2020
New York State enacted more robust rent control and eviction protection laws in 2019.
A Sheriffs eviction notice posted on the front door of a foreclosed property.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Labor unions face increasing challenges in 2020

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 3, 2020
The Trump administration wants to make organizing more difficult.
Jeff Kowalsky/AFP via Getty Images

Some states hike overtime salary threshold higher than Feds

by Mitchell Hartman Jan 1, 2020
A new federal salary level for low-paid managers to be eligible for overtime pay kicks in Jan. 1.
Employees work overnight in a factory.
Greg Baker/AFP via Getty Images

Minimum wage hikes are increasingly tied to cost of living

by Mitchell Hartman Dec 26, 2019
Of the 47 states, cities and counties raising minimum wages, about half are doing so automatically based on the consumer price index.
Ian Waldie/Getty Images