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Fair to say this was a brilliant day for Boston. General Electric Co. announced on Wednesday that it will be moving its headquarters from Fairfield, Conn., to Boston, starting this summer. That decision makes Boston the winner of an intense competition among dozens of cities — all hoping to become the hometown of one of the world's largest companies. GE has been based on a 68-acre suburban campus in Fairfield since 1974. Its new home will be built in Boston's Seaport District, with the full...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. DAVID GREENE, HOST: All right. Now to something else we heard from the president last night. He said the United States has the strongest and most durable economy in the world. (SOUNDBITE OF STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS) PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: More than 14 million new jobs - the strongest two years of job growth since the 1990s. An unemployment rate cut in half. Our auto industry just had its best year ever. (APPLAUSE) GREENE: We...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: Volkswagen has not finished explaining how it cheated on emissions tests. You'll recall the company admitted to fiddling with its diesel cars to make their pollution testing numbers seem far, far more impressive than they actually were. The head of Volkswagen is at the Detroit Auto Show. He talked with NPR's Sonari Glinton for 17 hours. Wait, that's a badly inflated figure. But he did talk with Sonari and said...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: One of the richest men in China has made a big splash in Hollywood. Wang Jianlin's conglomerate, Wanda, announced today it will buy Legendary Entertainment. That's the American company behind movies like "Jurassic World" and "Straight Outta Compton." NPR's Elizabeth Blair has our report. ELIZABETH BLAIR, BYLINE: Wanda is a massive corporation in China. Its business includes huge shopping centers,...

Joe Moore stood near a sign reading: "Authorized Personnel Only." "I used to be authorized," he said. Moore is a coal miner. The sign was at the entrance to the mine that had laid him off the previous day. The Alliance Coal facility had closed — a symptom of the coal industry's rapid decline. The industry is fading even as the rest of the economy grows. The Energy Information Administration estimates that nationwide coal production dropped by as much as 10 percent in 2015. Further declines...

Just as David Bowie left an indelible mark on music, he also played an important but lesser-known role in the world of finance. In 1997, Bowie became the first musician to package his future royalties into a security that could be bought and sold by investors, an asset that came to be known as a "Bowie bond." The sale of the bonds to Prudential Securities netted the musician $55 million. They were downgraded to junk by Moody's Securities in 2004, amid a wave of illegal downloading and weak...

TransCanada, the company behind the Keystone XL pipeline, is suing the U.S. government because President Obama struck down the next step in the pipeline plan in November. The company says Obama's rejection exceeded his authority under the Constitution, NPR's Jeff Brady reports. President Obama rejected the Keystone XL pipeline in November, saying it would not serve U.S. interests. First proposed seven years ago, the project was designed to transport crude oil from Canada's oil sands region...

Like cheap gasoline? Then you're in luck. Experts say gas prices very likely will keep falling. That's because a report released Wednesday showed a sharp increase in gasoline inventories. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said that last week, companies added another 10.6 million barrels of gasoline, creating the biggest surge in supply since 1993. That added to fears that supplies will far outstrip demand for a long time. Such concerns helped send global oil prices to their lowest...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: We are monitoring the ongoing tension between two rival Middle East powers. And we are reminded of how difficult it is to predict anything in this region these days. Things have been very tense between Saudi Arabia and Iran after the Saudi government executed a Shiite cleric. Both of these nations are big oil producers. And in the past, a simmering conflict like this would have led to a spike in oil...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: Well, the House of Representatives is now back to work. Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan has already decided on the first order of business, and it's a pretty big one. (SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH) PAUL RYAN: The House will put an Obamacare repeal bill on the floor and pass it and put it on the president's desk. GREENE: Repealing Obamacare. Well, this sets the stage for a showdown with the White House over...

Oh, the irony. Historically, when political tensions increased in the Middle East, the price of oil rose too. Buyers of oil worried that conflicts could interrupt drilling or interfere with oil-tanker access to waterways. In theory, when risks rise, so do prices. But in recent days, even as tensions have been growing between two key oil producing nations — Iran and Saudi Arabia — oil prices have been falling. They slipped below $36 a barrel on Tuesday. Why? Experts explain it this way: The...

The notion of a gun smart enough to tell who's holding it isn't new. Since the 1990s, inventors have been developing firearms geared with technologies that can authenticate their users — for instance by recognizing the fingerprint, the grip or an RFID chip — and stop working if held by the wrong hands. Several manufacturers have tried to introduce Americans to the concept, but the market here has been less than friendly over concerns that they are unreliable and would lead to more gun control...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript KELLY MCEVERS, HOST: Last year was a pretty unimpressive one for the stock market, and 2016 isn't starting off so well either. All over the world today, in Asia, Europe and the U.S., stock prices were down. The Dow Jones Industrial average was down 276 points. That's more than 1-and-a-half percent. The S&P 500 was also down more than 1-and-a-half percent. It lost 31 points. We're joined now by NPR's Jim Zarroli. And Jim,...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript DAVID GREENE, HOST: You know, when homeowners add onto a house, they usually build out or maybe up. They could add a floor. But there are some places in the world where cities have no room for houses to grow. And so there's only one option, and that is to dig down. NPR's Robert Smith reports from London on a new subterranean building boom. JOHN COYLE: You'd be surprised what's underground (laughter). ROBERT SMITH, BYLINE:...

Japan has made progress recently in getting more women to join the workforce. The latest numbers show a greater percentage of Japanese women work outside the home than American women. But for a rapidly aging and shrinking population, that progress may not be fast enough. One of the biggest reasons Japanese women choose to stay home is the lack of child care options. As of the latest count, in April 2015, about 23,000 Japanese children were on waiting lists for day care. Unable to find other...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript KELLY MCEVERS, HOST: Volkswagen would probably like to start the new year with a clean slate, but that is not going to happen. Today, the Justice Department filed a civil lawsuit against VW for allegedly violating the U.S. Clean Air Act. The company faces billions in penalties. NPR's Sonari Glinton reports. SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: The Volkswagen scandal where the company admitted to installing software that cheated during...

If you hail a ride using the on-demand app Lyft, that car could one day be self-driving. On Monday, Lyft announced a new partnership with General Motors, which is pumping half a billion dollars into the software startup and joining the board. One of the things they're doing is planning to build an autonomous fleet. They haven't released a specific timeline on when, though in the future, when you call the on-demand car service, the vehicle likely won't have a human driver. But it will have...

Volkswagen's use of a "defeat device" to fool U.S. regulators has resulted in a federal lawsuit against the company. Volkswagen has acknowledged that millions of its diesel cars worldwide relied on a ruse to skirt emissions controls. The civil complaint was filed in federal court in Detroit, with the Department of Justice acting on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency — which says it hasn't yet reached an acceptable agreement with Volkswagen over how to handle a recall. The carmakers...

China's stock markets stumbled badly on the first day of trading in 2016, with a 7 percent plunge forcing a market shutdown. The trigger mechanism that cut the day short in Shanghai and Shenzhen was created in response to last year's market crash, which brought trillions in losses. Ripple effects from the Chinese plunge were felt around the world. Major markets in Europe dropped, with Germany's DAX down more than 4 percent at one point Monday. In the U.S., the Dow Jones industrial average...

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