The unexpected dip to 6.7 percent may seem like good news, but the rate slid in December in part because the country found itself with a smaller workforce as people retired or just dropped out. At the same time, most of the jobs being created are in low-wage industries.
There's been a proliferation of devices that allow people to track their health and learn about potential medical problems. Startups offering digital services where customers quantify themselves in various ways are out in full force at the Consumer Electronics Show. But what are those companies doing to protect customer data?
China may have just dislodged the U.S. from a position its held for decades — the world's top trading nation. The latest Chinese figures put the value of its overall trade at $4.6 trillion last year. The U.S. will release its own 2013 data next month.
Alcoa and a subsidiary of the the U.S. aluminum giant, will pay $384 million to the U.S. government for engaging in corrupt practices. The payment is part of a settlement in a bribery case involving the royal family of Bahrain.
The government is going after Craig Zucker, the creator of a "desk toy" consisting of small round magnets that wound up being swallowed by a lot of children. The Consumer Product Safety Commisision initiated a recall but rather than go along, Zucker shut down his company.
A court in Virginal says Yelp has to release the names of seven critics who use its site. They gave a Washington, D.C. carpet cleaning service scathing reviews. And now the business owner wants to take them to court, saying they weren't really customers.
When President Lyndon Johnson launched the War on Poverty 50 years ago, part of it was a pushed to increase the nation's minimum wage. Low-wage workers actually saw their purchasing power peak while Johnson was in office.
The Labor Department on Friday said the nation's jobless rate fell to 6.7 percent as U.S. employers added 74,000 jobs to payrolls while more Americans stopped looking for work in December. In November, the unemployment rate was 7 percent.
The nation's unemployment rate dipped in December, but most job growth is happening in low-wage industries like retail. So are low-wage jobs really lifting people out of poverty? Host Michel Martin speaks with NPR Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax and historian Stephen Pimpare.
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