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The Indicator from Planet Money

Author: NPR

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A little show about big ideas. From the people who make Planet Money, The Indicator helps you make sense of what's happening today. It's a quick hit of insight into work, business, the economy, and everything else. Listen weekday afternoons.
537 Episodes
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2020 was a horrific year for the economy. We're hoping 2021 will be better, but will it? We discuss 3 indicators that suggest this year is shaping up to be better than last year.
The $1,000 Power Bill

The $1,000 Power Bill

2021-02-2430:043

The recent winter storm caused thousands of Texans to see their power bill climb to hundreds, even thousands of dollars. Can economics explain what happened?
Living on the open road is more than just an Instagram photo opportunity; for many it's both an economic necessity and a countercultural movement. Just ask Bob Wells, the evangelist of nomad life.
Amazon workers in Alabama are voting on whether to form the company's FIRST U.S. union. We explain how the union has succeeded in getting this far, and the potential ramifications of the vote.
For our indicators of the week, we're talking about shortages of heating sources during the recent cold snap and trends amongst unemployed Americans.
Bitcoin - The Religion

Bitcoin - The Religion

2021-02-1809:481

As the value of a bitcoin recently passed $50,000, market watchers struggled to explain how a virtual currency could reach such dizzy heights. One possible answer? It's kind of like a religion.
We've heard about how hard it's been for restaurants to stay open during this pandemic. But what we often don't hear is that closing can be just as tough.
Arthur Lewis changed our understanding of how poor countries can improve their economies — and became the first Black economist to win the Economics Nobel
Days Of COVID And Roses

Days Of COVID And Roses

2021-02-1323:112

The Covid-19 lockdown sent the flower market into free fall, but recently, flower prices have been picking up again. Who are the culprits behind this? Our old friends supply and demand, of course!
The Hollywood Writers Guild just declared victory in their fight with talent agencies. Who do they have to thank for their historic win? Among other factors, possibly ... the pandemic?
Last year, China pledged to vastly increase its U.S. imports during 2020 and 2021. We ask economist Chad Bown if actual spending has been keeping pace with what was promised.
Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency created in 2013 as a joke, recently broke a $10 billion market cap. The coin's creator tells us how the joke became real and if he has regrets.
The Power of Humor

The Power of Humor

2021-02-0849:244

Everyone enjoys a good laugh, but could humor be the secret to success in the workplace?
The US economy created 49,000 jobs last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's a lot less that people had hoped and shows that the recovery has slowed.
Over the past couple of weeks, the WallStreetBets Subreddit were responsible for the surge in GameStop stock, among others. Who are these people? And what do they want?
Hi Lo Silver

Hi Lo Silver

2021-02-0309:051

The price of silver shot up this week. Theories abound about what drove the trading.
Emojiconomics

Emojiconomics

2021-02-0221:42

What secretive forces were behind getting the pickup truck emoji onto phones and laptops around the world? And how much did it cost?
Irving Fisher and John Maynard Keynes suffered terrible losses in the Great Wall Street Crash of 1929. But they responded in different ways, leading to tragedy for Fisher and triumph for Keynes.
Biden is calling for a $15 federal minimum wage. Is that a good idea for workers and small businesses? Stacey and Cardiff duke it out.
The nation is reeling from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Lockdowns and layoffs have devastated the economy. But consumer confidence is higher than expected.
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Comments (151)

Paul Rhine

Stacey and Cardiff talk about having a bad experience with Ethereum in 2018 but if they had kept the 0.237 ethereum they bought for $100 to today it would be worth $407.30 now.

Feb 10th
Reply

Patrecia Sapulette

This is so beautiful! Thanks for bringing it here Stacey, Cardiff and Doug! I would appreciate rain more 🤭⛈🌧🌦

Jan 31st
Reply

Mary C

I am so not an outer space nerd, but I found this episode so fascinating on an intellectual level and incredibly touching on a human level. What a fun, unique perspective. Thanks as always guys, for an awesome episode!!

Jan 29th
Reply

Layla Folkmann

why on earth are doctors appointments a "service" in the states? it's in the same category as getting your car repaired? maybe I'm just an ignorant Canadian but I feel the rules of supply and demand shouldn't apply here... sorry

Jan 10th
Reply

j marrin

OMG, y'all need to chill. The market is ignoring it despite the media's melodrama because it doesn't matter.

Jan 8th
Reply

Patrecia Sapulette

I ❤❤❤ this episode!!!

Dec 28th
Reply

Patrecia Sapulette

Cardiff and Stacey!!! You rock guys! The Average Disposable Real Income in the US is ==Higher == this year - 2020....despite pandemic and horrible economy outlook. It's indeed strange, in a good way!

Dec 27th
Reply

Brannan Lynn

Yeet

Dec 15th
Reply

Eileen Klees

My mail service is so bad I had to go to the UPS store to deliver the products our customers were buying from us on eBay. After refunding a customer over $400 for an item that ultimately got delivered via USPS after three weeks this past July I gave up on the post office. The cost to ship a golf club via UPS is almost identical to USPS and way more reliable. By the way, we only get mail delivered to our house four times a week, often at weird times e.g. 10:00 p.m., 6:00 a.m. I live in the city of Chicago, so this is pretty ridiculous.

Dec 13th
Reply

j marrin

Doesn't seem fair to put those who broke the law to get here ahead of those patiently waiting in their home countries to immigrate legally.

Dec 2nd
Reply

Kei

if ya want to fix migration, should start with the gun problem of staw purchasing.

Dec 2nd
Reply

Chanaka Hettige

Of course Republican (And some of Democratic) administration thinks money can solve anything. And also money is start all end all!

Dec 1st
Reply

Chanaka Hettige

Yeap, I agree I want eat Turkey either. Surely a good chicken 😅

Nov 15th
Reply

j marrin

Successfully finding the cloud in every silver lining.

Nov 9th
Reply

zq

But who do we choose?

Nov 6th
Reply (1)

Dryad

you guys posted this one a couple years ago right?

Nov 5th
Reply

Xin Du

The city across the river from JiuJiang is not Wuhan. It is a small city called WuXue with fewer than 1 million population... This is a huge mistake guys

Nov 1st
Reply

ChangingTheWorld

While I appreciate your desire to provide a “New DAWN on Broadway” (10-26-20 Episode), how many residents of NYC have actually ever SEEN a Broadway show— 2%?? 10%?? What about the remaining 99.9% of US residents who have never had an opportunity to attend such an event? Even IF Broadway shows occasionally manage to go on-tour, how many “regular families” [making less than $50K per year] can afford to pay $400-$500 for tickets to attend just ONE of these events? Additionally, let us not forget that touring shows would likely only visit large urban areas. How many “regular people” could afford unpaid time away from work? What about their children’s time away from school? How many “regular people” have reliable transportation for a 4+ hour (one way) drive to a large urban area? Remember, most of the country doesn’t have access to public transportation. What about food? What about hotel accommodations for the entire family? While I certainly have empathy for the talented artists and businesses affected by the shut-down, they aren’t the only ones. Perhaps our nations’s limited resources could be better spent helping “the majority” by funding “small town” and rural arts, business, and educational programs. Additionally, since it appears that only a ”privileged few” have the luxury of participating-in and enjoying Broadway events, perhaps these PRIVILEGED individuals should be the FIRST to demonstrate their support for businesses affected by the Pandemic and for Broadway, instead of of demanding that the “rest of us” (and our children) fund “their” hobbies and habits through higher taxes and an increased national debt. Finally, IF it is determined that “government involvement” is the “only way” to resolve these challenges, perhaps you should first start with your local leadership, then your mayor, and finally your governor since THEY determined your region’s response to the pandemic and are therefore most responsible for the “pain” that you are now experiencing.

Oct 30th
Reply

j marrin

less biased politics please, more biased economics

Oct 29th
Reply

BC

Not only did they leave his highway sign up for 10 years, when it came time to replace the whole sign it was attached to they officially added his exit sign to the replacement.

Oct 29th
Reply
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