John Ydstie

John Ydstie has covered the economy, Wall Street and the federal budget for NPR for two decades. In recent years NPR has broadened his responsibilities, making use of his reporting and interviewing skills to cover major stories like the aftermath of 9/11, Hurricane Katrina and the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. His current focus is reporting on the global financial crisis. Ydstie is also a regular guest host on the NPR news programs Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition and Talk of the Nation.

During 1991 and 1992 Ydstie was NPR's bureau chief in London. He traveled throughout Europe covering, among other things, the breakup of the Soviet Union and attempts to move Europe toward closer political and economic union. He accompanied U.S. businessmen exploring investment opportunities in Russia as the Soviet Union was crumbling. He was on the scene in The Netherlands when European leaders approved the Maastricht Treaty, which created the European Union.

In August 1990, Ydstie traveled to Saudi Arabia for NPR as a member of the Pentagon press pool sent to cover the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. During the early stages of the crisis, Ydstie was the only American radio reporter in the country.

Ydstie has been with NPR since 1979. For two years, he was an associate producer responsible for Midwest coverage. In 1982 he became senior editor on NPR's Washington Desk, overseeing coverage of the federal government, American politics and economics. In 1984, Ydstie joined Morning Edition as the show's senior editor, and later was promoted to the position of executive producer. In 1988, he became NPR's economics correspondent.

During his tenure with NPR, Ydstie has won numerous awards. He was a member of the NPR team that received the George Foster Peabody for its coverage of 9/11. Ydstie's reporting from Saudi Arabia helped NPR win the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award in 1991 for coverage of the Gulf War. Prior to joining NPR, Ydstie was a reporter and producer at Minnesota Public Radio. While there, he was awarded the Clarion Award for his report "Vietnam Experience and America Today."

A graduate of Concordia College, in Moorhead, MN, Ydstie earned a bachelor of arts degree, summa cum laude, with a major in English literature and a minor in speech communications.

Ydstie was born in Minneapolis, and grew up in rural North Dakota.



Thu June 2, 2011

New Data Point To No Quick Fix For Economy

Originally published on Fri June 3, 2011 12:29 pm

Specialists Evan Solomon works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday, when major stock indexes fell steeply.
Richard Drew AP

Worries about a loss of momentum in the U.S. economy continued to make stock markets jittery Thursday. Major foreign exchanges experienced sell-offs following the sharp drop of more than 2 percent in U.S. indexes Wednesday. The markets are responding to data that suggest the U.S. recovery will remain a long, hard slog.

Mark Vitner, senior economist and managing director of Wells Fargo, says the market sell-off was a response to a tide of negative news in the past few days.

"There's been a lot of disappointing economic data," he says.

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Tue May 17, 2011

If IMF's Strauss-Kahn Steps Down, Who Takes Over?

IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn remains in custody in New York charged with the attempted rape of a hotel maid. It's almost certain Strauss-Kahn will not remain head of the IMF, and that creates a considerable leadership vacuum at a delicate time for the global economy.


Wed April 27, 2011

Taking Questions: A New Move For Fed Transparency

The Federal Reserve will take some extraordinary action Wednesday when, for the first time in the central bank's history, its chairman will hold a full-fledged press conference.

Ben Bernanke's afternoon appearance before reporters marks the start of what looks to be a permanent shift. The Fed is hoping to hold a press conference once every three months as it aims to explain itself better to the American public.

For some people, Wednesday's conference is a bigger media event than the royal wedding.

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Fri April 22, 2011
The Federal Budget Crunch

Navigating The Budget Maze, Without Getting Lost

President Obama has gone coast to coast this week to stump for his new budget proposal — a plan to shrink the government's ballooning debt. Meanwhile, Republicans are pushing their own plan, developed by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan.

Sorting through the conflicting claims is not easy. Even in the best of times, budget plans arrive in a blizzard of numbers. When the country faces daunting fiscal challenges, as it does now, the storm gets even more blinding.

The 'Crazy World' Of Budget Baselines

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Thu April 14, 2011
The Federal Budget Crunch

Taxes, Entitlements: Sticking Points In Deficit Debate

The budget plans put forward by President Obama and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) both set a goal of about $4 trillion in deficit reduction, but Ryan would get his in 10 years — two years sooner than the president.

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