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Complicity In Crisis: Can We Trust Ratings Agencies?

The current world economic crisis has raised hard questions about the assessments made by the big three ratings firms, S&P, Moody's and Fitch. It's also brought charges that they not only missed the onset of financial crisis, but helped fuel it with faulty judgments. Host Scott Simon talks with Roben Farzad, a senior writer for Bloomberg-Businessweek.
NPR

Eurozone's Rescue Plan Needs A Quick Fix

European leaders meet in Brussels next week with an urgent mission: Agree on a plan that to keep debt-ridden countries like Greece and Spain from default and save the euro. NPR's Eric Westervelt has the latest on efforts by European leaders.
NPR

Behind Unemployment Figure, A Nuanced Outlook

The U.S. unemployment rate took a big tumble in November, from 9 percent to 8.6 percent, according to the government's monthly jobs data. Still, it's probably too soon pop the champagne corks. A combination of forces caused the big drop, some good and some bad.
NPR

Turks Enjoy A Little Schadenfreude At EU's Expense

After years of seeing their bid to join the EU stalled, Turks are trying not to show too much pleasure at the doom-laden economic news emanating from Europe. However, economists warn, Europe's debt crisis could easily spill in Turkey's direction.
NPR

Sears Considers Leaving Illinois For Better Tax Deal

The company has called Illinois home for more than a century but is now at the heart of a bidding war between states, which are increasingly looking to take businesses away from one another as new-job creation remains slow. One offer from Ohio is reportedly worth up to $400 million in tax incentives.
NPR

Lower Unemployment May Paint Incomplete Picture

The Labor Department reports that the country's unemployment rate fell sharply last month. It dropped from 9 percent to 8.6 percent. Unfortunately, the real labor market may not have improved all that much. Many workers have given up looking for jobs, and their "retirement" can skew the unemployment rate, making it look better than the reality.

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