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Mexico Opens Its Energy Sector To Private Investment

Over the weekend, the needed majority of Mexican states ratified sweeping constitutional changes that would allow for the first time in decades foreign investment in the country's oil monopoly. Pemex has controlled the country's oil industry for 75 years.
NPR

Fitbit Flex Tops Jaroslovsky's 2013 Tech Gift List

With holiday shopping well underway, Linda Wertheimer talks to tech journalist Rich Jaroslovsky about this year's non-obvious tech gifts. Among his picks is the Fitbit Flex and a talking smoke detector.
NPR

Italian Police Arrest 4 In Holiday Extortion Case

Four alleged mafia gangsters have been arrested for forcing shop owners to buy poinsettias for as much as $140 each. Owners who refused to partake in the "Christmas special" would have their shops vandalized.
NPR

New Owner Promises Handmade Steinways For Years To Come

When billionaire John Paulson first bought Steinway & Sons, it struck fear in the hearts of musicians. Would Steinway's famously handcrafted pianos be changed, for the sake of efficiency?
NPR

Forget Golf Courses: Subdivisions Draw Residents With Farms

Across the country, a new model of housing development is springing up that embraces the local food movement. Farms — complete with livestock, vegetables and fruit trees — are now serving as the latest suburban amenity.
NPR

Year In Numbers: The Federal Reserve's $85 Billion Question

As 2013 wraps up, NPR is looking at the numbers that tell this year's story. When it comes to the economy, $85 billion is a good candidate. That's the amount the Federal Reserve has been pumping into the financial system each month trying to stimulate growth and bring down unemployment. On Tuesday, Fed policymakers begin a two-day meeting at which they'll decide whether to dial back that stimulus.
NPR

Economists, Unemployed Fret Over Long-Term Jobless Aid Lapse

Democrats in Congress are promising to try to retroactively extend emergency unemployment benefits after the new year. The expiration of the benefits may satisfy some fiscal conservatives, but it has some economists and many desperate job-seekers concerned.
NPR

New Year Likely To Ring In Old Debt Ceiling Fight

The good news is that the budget agreement moving through Congress takes another costly government shutdown off the table. The bad news? It looks like another debt ceiling clash is right around the corner.
NPR

Is Silicon Valley Automating Our Obsolescence?

Silicon Valley has created mind-boggling amounts of wealth. Entire industries have been invented here. Billionaires are minted annually, but inequality is rising rapidly and the middle class is thinning out. Could the same technology that's making so many so rich undermine the labor market?
NPR

General Motors CEO: In The Bailout, Fair Is Fair

Dan Akerson says asking new shareholders to pay back tax payers would be unfair, and would lead to shareholder lawsuits that would be "difficult to defend."

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