John Ydstie http://kcur.org en In May Jobs Report, A Milestone: A Return To Pre-Recession Levels http://kcur.org/post/may-jobs-report-milestone-return-pre-recession-levels The May jobs report showed steady job creation. Payrolls expanded by 217,000, and unemployment held steady at 6.3%. And there was a milestone: The U.S. economy now has slightly more jobs than it did in December 2007, when the last recession began. Fri, 06 Jun 2014 20:13:00 +0000 John Ydstie 56956 at http://kcur.org New Pollution Rules Leave Utilities Frustrated, As Details Remain Up In Air http://kcur.org/post/new-pollution-rules-leave-utilities-frustrated-details-remain-air The Obama administration has proposed rules for limiting greenhouse gases, but many of the details must still be set by states, leaving utilities unsure about specifics they'll be expected to achieve. Wed, 04 Jun 2014 20:08:00 +0000 John Ydstie 56817 at http://kcur.org Study Questions Need For Employer Health Care Requirement http://kcur.org/post/study-questions-need-employer-health-care-requirement When the Affordable Care Act was unveiled, business groups railed against the provision that requires companies with 50 or more employees to provide health insurance for their full-time workers.<p>The Obama administration responded by pushing back the deadline for the coverage, so it hasn't yet taken effect. Wed, 28 May 2014 20:30:00 +0000 John Ydstie 56468 at http://kcur.org Study Questions Need For Employer Health Care Requirement The Merits Of Income Inequality: What's The Right Amount? http://kcur.org/post/merits-income-inequality-whats-right-amount Income inequality is a big problem, many economists agree. But they also say some level of inequality is necessary for capitalism to work.<p>Inequality in the U.S. has risen to levels not seen since the 1920s. The top 1 percent pocket more than 20 percent of the nation's income, and the 400 richest people in the country own more wealth than everyone in the bottom 50 percent.<p>That's not healthy for the society or the economy, says Branko Milanovic, an economist at the City University of New York Graduate Center. Sun, 18 May 2014 09:29:00 +0000 John Ydstie 55915 at http://kcur.org The Merits Of Income Inequality: What's The Right Amount? Positive April Jobs Report Blows Past Expectations http://kcur.org/post/positive-april-jobs-report-blows-past-expectations Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel. U.S. employers were in a hiring mood in April. That's the takeaway from the government's monthly jobs report released today. It shows 288,000 jobs added to payrolls. That's the biggest monthly job growth in nearly two and a half years. Fri, 02 May 2014 20:08:00 +0000 John Ydstie 55148 at http://kcur.org Slow Growth For U.S. Economy, But Fed Plans Are Full Speed Ahead http://kcur.org/post/slow-growth-us-economy-fed-plans-are-full-speed-ahead The economy slowed sharply in the first quarter, with data released Wednesday showing that growth was barely positive. Federal Reserve policymakers wrapped up a meeting Wednesday with a statement saying the economy had actually picked up a bit in recent weeks. They voted unanimously to continue winding down their stimulus program. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Wed, 30 Apr 2014 20:00:00 +0000 John Ydstie 55020 at http://kcur.org In March Jobs Report, Market Awakens From A Winter Swoon http://kcur.org/post/march-jobs-report-market-awakens-winter-swoon The U.S. economy added 192,000 jobs in March, according to data released this morning. The unemployment rate refused to budge, though, holding steady at 6.7 percent. Fri, 04 Apr 2014 20:17:00 +0000 John Ydstie 53707 at http://kcur.org Health Care Law Helps Entrepreneurs Quit Their Day Jobs http://kcur.org/post/how-health-care-law-could-spur-new-businesses The Affordable Care Act — which many see creating challenges for businesses — could benefit a particular group of business people: entrepreneurs.<p>Joshua Simonson was reluctant to give up his job at a Portland, Ore., area grocery store, New Seasons Market, which he says had provided excellent health care for him and his family. Wed, 12 Mar 2014 20:59:00 +0000 John Ydstie 52554 at http://kcur.org Health Care Law Helps Entrepreneurs Quit Their Day Jobs February Jobs Numbers Give Some Economists Reason To Smile http://kcur.org/post/february-jobs-numbers-give-some-economists-reason-smile Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>And I'm Melissa Block. There was some positive economic news today. Job growth in February was stronger than expected. The government monthly employment report showed 175,000 jobs were added to the economy last month. There were also upward revisions for December and January. Fri, 07 Mar 2014 21:09:00 +0000 John Ydstie 52302 at http://kcur.org February Job Growth Beats Expectations; Jobless Rate Ticks Up http://kcur.org/post/february-job-growth-beats-expectations-jobless-rate-ticks Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>It was pretty clear that the recent bout of winter weather that many of us have seen was going to have an effect on job growth in February. The question was how much. And it turns out less than expected. That's the message from the government's monthly employment report that's out today. It found that U.S. employers added 175,000 jobs to their payrolls last month. Fri, 07 Mar 2014 16:39:00 +0000 John Ydstie 52287 at http://kcur.org Weather Expected To Effect February Jobs Report http://kcur.org/post/weather-expected-effect-february-jobs-report Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>The recent bout of winter weather that many of us have felt has hit the U.S. economy. Winter storms cooled job growth in February. The only question is by how much. Economists, investors and job seekers are looking to today's employment report from the government for an answer. NPR's John Ydstie says their predictions have been dampened by the weather too.<p>JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: John Sylvia is the top economist for Wells Fargo. Fri, 07 Mar 2014 09:55:00 +0000 John Ydstie 52268 at http://kcur.org Meeting Minutes Show Human Side To Fiscal Crisis http://kcur.org/post/meeting-minutes-show-human-side-fiscal-crisis Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>The Federal Reserve today released transcripts of its meetings in 2008, back when the financial crisis was unfolding. The documents show Fed policymakers struggling to understand and respond to failing Wall Street banks and the global financial system in turmoil. NPR's John Ydstie has been reading through the transcripts and joins us now. Hey there, John.<p>JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Hi, Audie.<p>CORNISH: So we've had these minutes, at least, right, from most of these meetings for years. Fri, 21 Feb 2014 21:40:00 +0000 John Ydstie 51643 at http://kcur.org Fed Chair Promises Continuity Before Congress http://kcur.org/post/fed-chair-promises-continuity-congress Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>And I'm Robert Siegel.<p>Janet Yellen made her first appearance on Capitol Hill today as the new leader of the Federal Reserve. Her message was clear. There will be no sudden changes in Fed policy. As NPR's John Ydstie reports, Yellen said the central bank is likely to keep pulling back its big stimulus program despite concerns about the economy.<p>JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: It was a long day for Janet Yellen. Tue, 11 Feb 2014 21:44:00 +0000 John Ydstie 51131 at http://kcur.org Jobs Report: Unemployment Ticks Down; Payrolls Tick Up http://kcur.org/post/jobs-report-unemployment-ticks-down-payrolls-tick Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.<p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>I'm Renee Montagne. And this morning brought another surprisingly weak jobs report. The government says the U.S. economy added just 113,000 jobs in January. That follows just 75,000 jobs in December. Those numbers are way below the average monthly job creation for most of 2013 and it has lots of people worried the economy may be losing steam. NPR's John Ydstie joins us again to talk about it. Fri, 07 Feb 2014 16:26:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50937 at http://kcur.org January Unemployment Numbers Expected To Rebound http://kcur.org/post/january-unemployment-numbers-expected-rebound Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>On a Friday this is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.<p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>And I'm Renee Montagne. There's lots of anticipation about the government's monthly jobs report that will be released later this morning. Last month's job creation numbers were very disappointing - just 74,000 jobs added to the payroll - far below the recent monthly averages. NPR's John Ydstie joined us to talk about job creation and what it's telling us about the economy. Fri, 07 Feb 2014 10:03:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50922 at http://kcur.org Reining In Health Care Costs Key To Trimming Deficit http://kcur.org/post/reining-health-care-costs-key-trimming-deficit The Congressional Budget Office earlier this week said this year's deficit is likely to be about one-third the size it was in 2009, when the Great Recession bottomed out. A recovering economy is the main reason for the deficit's improvement, but moderating health care costs have also contributed.<p>Harvard economist and health policy specialist David Cutler says getting the federal government's finances under control is all about health care.<p>"A fairly accurate summary of the federal budget is that the U.S. Thu, 06 Feb 2014 10:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50860 at http://kcur.org Is Obamacare A Job Killer? New Estimates Suggest It Might Be http://kcur.org/post/obamacare-job-killer-new-estimates-suggest-it-might-be A new front has opened in the political battle over the Affordable Care Act, with Tuesday's release of the Congressional Budget Office's annual budget and economic outlook. The economists updated an earlier estimate about how many workers would leave the workforce because they no longer needed a job to have health care coverage — revising upward from 800,000 people to over 2 million people. Republicans pounced on the higher number, and President Obama now finds himself playing defense. Tue, 04 Feb 2014 22:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50784 at http://kcur.org After Overcoming Early Obstacles, Yellen Assumes Fed's Top Job http://kcur.org/post/after-overcoming-early-obstacles-yellen-assumes-feds-top-job Ben Bernanke hands over the reins at the Federal Reserve to Janet Yellen on Friday. The Fed's vice chairwoman will be the first female ever to lead the nation's central bank. It's a position many view as the second most powerful in the country.<p>The world of central banking is largely a man's world. But Yellen has been undeterred by such barriers since she was in high school in Brooklyn. Charlie Saydah, a former classmate, says she was probably the smartest kid in the class. Fri, 31 Jan 2014 23:23:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50605 at http://kcur.org After Overcoming Early Obstacles, Yellen Assumes Fed's Top Job A Fond Farewell To Fed Chairman Ben http://kcur.org/post/fond-farewell-fed-chairman-ben Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>Ben Bernanke steps down this week as chairman of the Federal Reserve. The new chair, Janet Yellen, will take over on Saturday. After a two-day meeting, the message today from Fed policymakers was simple: Stay the course. The Fed released a statement saying it will continue dialing-back its stimulus.<p>NPR's John Ydstie has more on that decision and Bernanke's legacy.<p>JOHN YDSTIE, BYLINE: Fed policymakers said they will reduce their monthly stimulus by another $10 billion. Wed, 29 Jan 2014 22:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50480 at http://kcur.org Bernanke's Fed Legacy: A Tenure Full Of Tough Decisions http://kcur.org/post/bernankes-fed-legacy-tenure-full-tough-decisions Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will preside over his last Fed policy-making meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday. Mon, 27 Jan 2014 08:31:00 +0000 John Ydstie 50313 at http://kcur.org Bernanke's Fed Legacy: A Tenure Full Of Tough Decisions Year In Numbers: The Federal Reserve's $85 Billion Question http://kcur.org/post/year-numbers-federal-reserves-85-billion-question Many economists and investors think there's a good chance that at the end of their two-day meeting that begins Tuesday, Federal Reserve policymakers will announce that they'll begin reducing their $85 billion monthly stimulus, their third round of quantitative easing, or QE3.<p>The analysts think recent economic data, like a drop in the unemployment rate to 7 percent and a budget deal in Washington, have brightened the outlook for the economy enough that the Fed can pull back.<p>But there's another troubling number that could make Fed policymakers stand pat, says University of Chicago professo Tue, 17 Dec 2013 08:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 48450 at http://kcur.org Year In Numbers: The Federal Reserve's $85 Billion Question What's At Stake For States That Reject Medicaid Expansion http://kcur.org/post/whats-stake-states-reject-medicaid-expansion The Affordable Care Act has produced a surge in the number of people signing up for Medicaid. The ACA offers billions of federal dollars to states to expand Medicaid coverage for the poor. But only 25 states have accepted the federal government's offer, and those that haven't could face economic and budget losses. Wed, 11 Dec 2013 11:56:00 +0000 John Ydstie 48147 at http://kcur.org The Stock Market Loves The Fed For Now, But Can It Last? http://kcur.org/post/stock-market-loves-fed-now-can-it-last Major stock indexes have shot to record highs in the U.S. this year, gaining more than 20 percent, and yet economic growth remains at disappointing levels. A lot of analysts believe the stimulus efforts by the Federal Reserve are behind the stock boom and a possible bubble.<p>Mohamed El-Erian, CEO of the <a href="http://www.pimco.com/Pages/default.aspx" target="_blank">giant bond fund PIMCO</a>, says the markets would not have done so well without that support from the Fed. Tue, 26 Nov 2013 23:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 47461 at http://kcur.org The Stock Market Loves The Fed For Now, But Can It Last? Senate Panel To Hear From Fed Chief Nominee Janet Yellen http://kcur.org/post/senate-panel-hear-fed-chief-nominee-janet-yellen The first woman to be nominated to head the Federal Reserve takes the witness chair on Capitol Hill Thursday morning for her confirmation hearing. Janet Yellen's challenge will be to reassure her Democratic supporters that she's focused on job creation, while convincing at least a few Republicans that she'll keep inflation in check. Thu, 14 Nov 2013 11:16:00 +0000 John Ydstie 46814 at http://kcur.org How The Affordable Care Act Pays For Insurance Subsidies http://kcur.org/post/how-affordable-care-act-pays-insurance-subsidies The new health care law will provide around $1 trillion in subsidies to low- and middle-income Americans over the next decade to help them pay for health insurance.<p>Johanna Humbert of Galien, Mich., was pleasantly surprised to discover that she qualifies for an insurance subsidy, since her current plan is being canceled. Humbert makes about $30,000 a year, so she'll get a subsidy of about $300 a month. Thu, 07 Nov 2013 07:57:00 +0000 John Ydstie 46440 at http://kcur.org How The Affordable Care Act Pays For Insurance Subsidies Notices Canceling Health Insurance Leave Many On Edge http://kcur.org/post/notices-canceling-health-insurance-leave-many-edge President Obama repeated this line or a variation of it many times during the campaign to pass his landmark health care bill: "If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan, period."<p>But while that might be true for people who get health insurance through their employer, it's not true for many people who buy their policies in the individual market — about 5 percent of the nation's policyholders.<p>At a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill Wednesday, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said the president had not broken his promise. Wed, 30 Oct 2013 22:00:00 +0000 John Ydstie 46064 at http://kcur.org Notices Canceling Health Insurance Leave Many On Edge For Obamacare To Work, It's Not Just About The Numbers http://kcur.org/post/obamacare-work-its-not-just-about-numbers Relatively few people have enrolled in new health insurance plans since the Affordable Care Act exchanges launched this month. Fri, 25 Oct 2013 22:48:00 +0000 John Ydstie 45825 at http://kcur.org For Obamacare To Work, It's Not Just About The Numbers Wilted Reputations Left By Shutdown And Default Threat http://kcur.org/post/wilted-reputations-left-shutdown-and-default-threat President Obama said Thursday that the government shutdown and threat of default did unnecessary damage to both the U.S. Thu, 17 Oct 2013 21:54:00 +0000 John Ydstie 45396 at http://kcur.org Wilted Reputations Left By Shutdown And Default Threat In A Debt Crisis, U.S. May Have To Decide Payment Priorities http://kcur.org/post/debt-crisis-us-may-have-decide-payment-priorities The government is just 10 days away from defaulting on its debt. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has said that by Oct. Mon, 07 Oct 2013 21:26:00 +0000 John Ydstie 44832 at http://kcur.org In A Debt Crisis, U.S. May Have To Decide Payment Priorities Is The Fed Chair Succession Too Politicized? http://kcur.org/post/fed-chair-succession-too-politicized Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. There was once a time when naming a new Federal Reserve chairman was a non-event. Well, not this time. Fri, 27 Sep 2013 20:24:00 +0000 John Ydstie 44340 at http://kcur.org