Congressional leaders have announced their appointments to the so-called "supercommittee." The panel's job is to find deeper deficit reductions and a long-term plan for the federal government's spending.
Investors have been witnessing big swings on Wall Street as well as Asian and European exchanges. And now France is the latest country caught up in the debt crisis plaguing Europe and the United States. Jonathan Loynes, the chief European economist at Capital Economics in London, talks to Steve Inskeep about the latest financial market movers.
Bloomberg Markets Matthew Miller spent months scouring the globe for billionaires who control big parts of the economy, yet have managed to fly under the radar. He talks to Renee Montagne about his article "Hidden Billionaires."
The European debt crisis is being blamed for a run on the shares of French banks. The stocks tumbled on the Paris stock exchange yesterday, amid fears the country's "Triple A" credit rating was under threat. Government officials and the banks said the fears were based on speculators spreading rumors.
A Department of Energy panel hopes new recommendations — if implemented — will restore the public's trust in hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" for natural gas.
In the last few years, fracking has brought new life to old gas fields around the country. Most of the increasing production comes from dense layers of shale deep underground. By pumping huge deep underground amounts of water, along with smaller amounts of chemicals and sand, drillers can force gas out of shale.
If you've read the Discworld novels by popular fantasy writer Terry Pratchett, you've surely encountered Death. He's an actual character — a skeleton in a black hood who's portrayed as not such a bad guy after all.
So maybe it's not so surprising that at 63, Pratchett — who has been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's — speaks openly about causing his own death.