NPR News & Stories Via WUNC

Trying to understand the Trump Organization is a daunting task. President-elect Donald Trump has not released tax documents, so the best clues about his privately held business interests come from a financial disclosure form he released in May.

The document covers scores of pages with small type, and suggests he is financially involved with hundreds of companies, including some that simply license his name.

President-elect Donald Trump has chosen Dr. Ben Carson to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development in his incoming administration.

"Ben Carson has a brilliant mind and is passionate about strengthening communities and families within those communities," Trump said in a statement released Monday. "We have talked at length about my urban renewal agenda and our message of economic revival, very much including our inner cities."

You can re-enact that scene in the old movie Christmas Vacation.

A family goes into a forest and cuts down a ridiculously tall tree.

The U.S. Forest Service is selling Christmas tree removal permits for $5 in the Green Mountain National Forest of Vermont.

You go into the forest. You cut down the tree yourself. There's only one catch: the tree you choose cannot be more than 20 feet tall.

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A full decade after the Food and Drug Administration approved a vaccine to fight the sexually transmitted, cancer-causing human papillomavirus, almost half of all adolescents have still not received their first dose. This low vaccination rate is dramatic when compared to other routine childhood immunizations like polio and measles, mumps and rubella, where compliance is above 90 percent.

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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


The weekend fire at a warehouse party in Oakland, Calif., has claimed more than 30 lives, and that's just the count up to now.


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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


The Politics Of Trade Under Trump

11 hours ago
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President-elect Trump dug in over the weekend on his approach to trade.


He threatened, quote, "retribution or consequence" for companies that move workers out of the United States and then try to sell goods back to the U.S.

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When a robotic probe finally lands on a watery world like Jupiter's moon Europa, what do scientists have to see to definitively say whether the place has any life?

That's the question retired astronaut John Grunsfeld posed to some colleagues at NASA when he was in charge of the agency's science missions.

A lawsuit on behalf of Alabama's prisoners, claiming they're being denied mental health care, begins in federal court Monday. The class-action suit states that Alabama doesn't provide adequate mental health treatment for those behind bars.

Lawyers for the prisoners argue that the state provides little other than medication, and sometimes inmates are forced to take it against their will. The plaintiffs allege prison conditions are dangerous and discriminatory, which amounts to cruel and unusual punishment, a violation of the Eighth Amendment.

ExxonMobil CEO could be next Secretary of State

12 hours ago

On today's show, we'll talk about the effects of Sunday's Italian referendum on the markets; claims that China manipulates its currency; reports that ExxonMobil's CEO, Rex Tillerson, is being considered for Secretary of State; and the Bay Area's shortage of affordable housing.

Student parent.

Ever heard that term? It's used for a student who is also a parent, and there are nearly five million of them in colleges around the country. That's over a quarter of the undergraduate population, and that number has gone up by around a million since 2011.

It can be really, really expensive to be a student parent, especially if you need to pay for child care while you're in class.

Bay Area fire highlights region's housing issues

13 hours ago
David Brancaccio

Authorities in Oakland, California caution that the number of casualties in Friday's concert fire could rise significantly. Thirty-six people who were in the warehouse are known dead. The building was dubbed the Ghost Ship, a structure where some people reportedly lived amid makeshift electrical gas and plumbing lines. 

The investigation has only begun, but there are already discussions about Silicon Valley-driven real estate prices that drive some residents into marginal structures.

Universal basic income could become reality

14 hours ago
David Brancaccio

One big idea is re-emerging as automation and software take over many jobs formerly held by humans. It's called universal basic income, a policy in which all citizens would get money from the government. There are already a number of experiments going on around the world based on universal incomes. 

Marketplace's senior economics contributor Chris Farrell explains why this concept is returning to the discussion table.

On why economic conservatives are seriously discussing the idea of a universal income:

Surprise. China is not a currency manipulator

14 hours ago
Sabri Ben-Achour

President-elect Donald Trump is wrong when he says China is holding its currency down. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, China is not a currency manipulator.  It may have been in years past, but for the past two years or more, economists have observed that China is — if anything — propping its currency UP, not holding it down. In the words of one economist, China is "doing the U.S. a favor."

Click the above audio player to hear the full story. 

Italy referendum casts uncertainty on country's banks

16 hours ago
David Brancaccio

Italian voters have defeated a referendum on constitutional reform by a wider than expected margin — 59 percent of them said "no." Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi plans to resign, with new elections likely to begin by early spring, if not earlier.  

Marketplace Tech for Monday, December 5, 2016

17 hours ago

On today's show, we'll talk about Facebook's expansion in Menlo Park and Palo Alto — and how it plans to deal with potentially displaced residents. We'll also look at algorithms that are being trained to identify different kinds of audio through video footage. 


On today's show, we'll talk about the defeat of Italy's referendum on constitutional reform; Austria's new pro-European Union president; and Universal Basic Income — a policy in which all citizens would get money from the government.

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Marketplace staff

President-elect Donald Trump has chosen former rival Ben Carson as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The former neurosurgeon faced off against Trump during the Republican primary, endorsing him a week after he ended his presidential bid back in March. At the time, Trump said that Carson would play a “big, big part” in his campaign, reported CNN.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key surprised his country, announcing that he would be resigning in a week's time. Key, who is also leader of the National Party, made his decision public at a press conference on Monday afternoon local time.

"Sometimes you've got to make hard decisions to make right decisions," Key told reporters. "This is the hardest decision I've ever made, and I don't know what I'll do next."

Italian voters have dealt a serious defeat to the government of Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. In a referendum Sunday, they rejected Renzi's proposed constitutional reforms, which would have changed the balance of power between the executive and Parliament.

The "no" vote is expected to win by a margin of nearly 20 percentage points, in what is seen as a resounding message of discontent with Renzi's government. The lopsided result also signals the strength of anti-establishment sentiment in the country.