Mid-day Update - Most Commented

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PODCAST: Banks under investigation, ethanol up for discussion

Aug 16, 2012
Today there's word that a number of banks, including JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup, are being subpoenaed, by regulators in New York and Connecticut. It's all about charges that the banks rigged an interest rate called LIBOR. Facebook, which went public in May with a stock price of $38 a share, is now down to around $21 a share. And today, that price could drop further, when a lockup ends and insiders are able to sell their shares. And as the worst drought in 50 years continues to send grain prices through the roof, several governors are asking the federal government to end a mandate that requires some of the nation's corn to be used for ethanol.

PODCAST: Retailers join forces for mobile payment

Aug 15, 2012
The stock price of Standard Chartered Bank is up sharply this morning, after the British bank settled with New York state regulators for $340 million after allegations that it hid thousands of financial transactions with Iran. Wal-Mart reports its quarterly earnings this morning. And the company is teaming up with other big retailers to offer a mobile payments network. And different parts of the country have experienced the housing collapse in different ways. But some places have a housing market that seems totally disconnected from the rest of the nation. Just ask the real estate agents in North Idaho.

PODCAST: Retail sales shine bright, Groupon dims out

Aug 14, 2012
There are really two camps of people at the Federal Reserve: Those who think we should be doing a lot more stimulus monetarily, and focused on that employment mandate that the Fed has; And those who are worried more about inflation, and don't want the Fed to be expanding its balance sheet. One person who thinks there should be more stimulus is a guy named Eric Rosengren, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. And the official price tag for the London Olympics is about $15 billion. And while some tally up the benefits, some small business owners in London are seeing red.

PODCAST: Paul Ryan gets picked, Google slashes Motorola Mobility jobs

Aug 13, 2012
Wisconsin congressman and now Republican vice presidential Candidate Paul Ryan will be in Iowa today, talking with voters at the state fair. It'll be Ryan's first solo-appearance since Mitt Romney announced Ryan as his running mate on Saturday. New figures out this morning show Japan's economy is slowing down. It grew at a rate of 1.4 percent in the latest three month period. The United States is taking home 104 Olympic medals this year. But there's one winner from the Olympics without any medals. It's something called Kinesio tape.

PODCAST: Drought hurts corn production, lobstermen at odds

Aug 10, 2012
The Agriculture Department gives us new estimates for this fall's harvest today and the expectation is: it won't be pretty. Corn is America's biggest crop, though some experts are questioning whether that should still be the case. There's a debate over whether -- and to what extent -- Congress should step in to help. And if you think about things we're not going to be using in the years ahead, small change like pennies might be one of them; so might DVDs. But if you look at the success if the company Coinstar, which owns the DVD rental kiosk company Redbox, you might come to a different conclusion. Both businesses use machines to sell their products, rather than human employees.

PODCAST: Hitting the breaks in China, preventing a global food crisis

Aug 9, 2012
In Syria, rebel forces are battling with the government for control of the economic hub of Aleppo. At crucial moments like this in the Libyan conflict, there was assistance for the rebels from the U.S. and NATO -- in both money and materials. The latest economic data out of China show a continued economic slowdown there. New numbers on factory output and retail sales came in below expectations this morning. And the defense industry is worried it may have to issue mass layoff notices if Congress doesn't stop us from going over the so-called fiscal cliff in January. But what does the fiscal cliff mean for you?

PODCAST: A light at the end of the housing tunnel

Aug 8, 2012
As American Airlines winds its way through bankruptcy, some of its union workers are voting on new contract offers. Next week, a judge will decide if the company can throw out its old labor contracts and impose even more severe cuts on the workers. In the housing market, the credit rating agency Trans Union said late payments on mortgages have reached the lowest level in three years. And Apple and Google are expected to be major bidders at an auction today over patents from Eastman Kodak. Patent law is one of the most lucrative fields in the industry these days, and bilingual lawyers are in high demand because of it.

PODCAST: Giving loans to South Africa, fighting a refinery fire

Aug 7, 2012
The British firm Standard Chartered bank isn't a bank you'll find on every corner in the United States, even though it processes almost $200 billion worth of global transactions every day. But it could soon have its banking license revoked in the nation's financial center, because of allegations that the bank has been hiding tens of thousands of secret transactions with Iran. This week, companies like Macy's, Kohl's, Nordstrom and JCPenney will reporter earnings, but those earnings will only tell part of the story. In Australia, there's a new tax on greenhouse gas missions, and it was expected to help the poor and the elderly. They get a refund to pay for basic goods like food and electricity.

PODCAST: Taxing the Cayman Islands, finding the world's laziest countries

Aug 6, 2012
We have touched down on Mars! The NASA rover Curiosity landed on the surface of the red planet late last night. And it was all hugs at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab in California. While NBC has been criticized for not running Olympic events live, but criticism aside, NBC is looking at strong ratings for the games so far, and the Olympics could help the network long after the torch leaves London. And we hear from one former Republican Congressional staff member about why he left the game following last year's debt ceiling crisis, and what we need to do to fix the financial incentives in American politics today.

PODCAST: July jobs report released

Aug 3, 2012
Today, the Labor Department told us 163,000 jobs were created in the U.S. in July, and and the new unemployment rate is 8.3 percent. Here in the U.S., women represent almost half of the labor force. But in the Palestinian territories, the number is far lower -- which is where Maysoon Oday comes in. She has started a radio station to get more women into the workforce. And this Sunday night, NASA's Curiosity Rover will be landing on Mars. The $2.5 billion mission will be getting some big time publicity, broadcasting live on the huge Toshiba Screen in New York's Times Square.

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About this collection

The Mid-Day Update is a five-day-a-week podcast from the Marketplace Morning Report hosted by David Brancaccio that wraps up the morning news in a fun little package. Listen here every day at 10 a.m. PT or download it to your iPod by subscribing to the Morning Report Podcast.