Feb 19, 2020

What it’s like to be a service worker right now

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Plus: sinking toy sales, new producer price index numbers and what it's like to build your own house.

Stories From this episode

United States of Work

Meet Neil, 34, bartender

Feb 18, 2020
The Bureau of Labor Statistics would categorize Neil's job as a “service occupation,” along with a wide range of other workers. Two in 10 people work jobs in that category.
Thomas Patterson
United States of Work

Meet Ashley, 34, hair stylist

Feb 18, 2020
Ashley is part of the service industry and like 80% of the U.S. labor force, works full time.
Arlie Sommer
Adventures in Housing

Building a house, one log at a time

Feb 19, 2020
Brigitte Ruthman has always wanted to live in a log home. "It's like living in artwork," she said.
Brigitte Ruthman's cabin she built near Sandisfield, Massachusetts.
Courtesy of Brigitte Ruthman

Health care costs are driving up inflation

Feb 19, 2020
The latest producer price index was up 0.5% in January, mostly because of higher service costs, not more expensive goods.
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Housing starts down for the month, up for the year

Feb 19, 2020
The Census Bureau reported housing starts fell 3.6% in January 2020 from the previous month, but rose 21.4% from January 2019.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

Is the "must-have" toy a thing of the past?

Feb 19, 2020
According to the NPD Group, toy sales dropped by 4% last year.
Toy sales were down this past season partly because there was no "must-have" toy.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Music from the episode

Lush Four Tet
My Only Swerving El Ten Eleven
Dreamin On Erie The Aggrolites
All Of Your Love (feat. Kotomi) Germany Germany, Kotomi
Let It Happen Tame Impala

The team

Nancy Farghalli Executive Producer
Bridget Bodnar Producer
Daisy Palacios Producer
Sean McHenry Associate Producer
Maria Hollenhorst Associate Producer

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