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Jim Zarroli

Jim Zarroli is a business reporter for NPR News, based at NPR's New York bureau.

He covers economics and business news including fiscal policy, the Federal Reserve, the job market and taxes

Over the years, he's reported on recessions and booms, crashes and rallies, and a long string of tax dodgers, insider traders and Ponzi schemers. He's been heavily involved in the coverage of the European debt crisis and the bank bailouts in the United States.

Prior to moving into his current role, Zarroli served as a New York-based general assignment reporter for NPR News. While in this position he covered the United Nations during the first Gulf War. Zarroli added to NPR's coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the London transit bombings and the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center.

Before joining the NPR in 1996, Zarroli worked for the Pittsburgh Press and wrote for various print publications.

Zarroli graduated from Pennsylvania State University.

Federal law says anyone who works for the executive branch of the government has to avoid conflicts of interest. The Treasury secretary cannot own stock in a big bank, for instance. And Richard Painter, who served as ethics adviser under President George W. Bush, says different administrations have typically been scrupulous about following the law.

"Whenever anyone was even considering a position that would be appointed by the president, I would discuss with that person the need to sell off assets that create conflicts of interest," Painter says.

For 130 years, the hulking Bethlehem Steel Mill dominated the economy of eastern Pennsylvania's Northampton County, providing jobs for generations of residents. Today, it's been replaced by a Sands Casino.

"It was thousands of jobs. The entire south side of Bethlehem was built for the residents, the employees of Bethlehem Steel. Now it's nothing," says county resident Keith Hornik, who works at his family's construction company.

Never before has someone ascended to the presidency owning the kind of complex network of businesses that Donald Trump operates. Trump has promised to turn his company over to his three grown children to run once he's sworn in. But he has refused to do what other presidents have done to insulate himself from conflicts of interest.

For decades, global trade has been transforming the world's economy, bringing Japanese and Korean cars to North American highways, U.S. software to European computers and German machine tools to Asian factories.

But the days of explosive trade growth may be at an end.

The dollar value of world merchandise (or non-services) exports fell from $19 trillion in 2014 to $16.6 trillion last year, a decline of 13.3 percent, according to the World Bank.

The rallies and debates, the tweets and the fundraisers, the wearying last-minute swings through the same half-dozen or so battleground states — all that is winding down at last.

Today it was time for the two major presidential candidates to perform the Election Day ritual of casting their own votes, just like average Joes, except for the fact that average Joes aren't usually trailed by dozens of reporters and TV cameras.

Excerpts from speeches Hillary Clinton was paid to give to big banks suggest a relationship with Wall Street that is a lot more familiar and pragmatic than the fiery rhetoric she has sometimes used on the campaign trail.

"I represented all of you for eight years. I had great relations and worked so close together after 9/11 to rebuild downtown, and a lot of respect for the work you do and the people who do it," she told a Goldman Sachs symposium on Oct. 24, 2013.

Update at 5:45 p.m. ET 24 Governors Now Oppose Resettlement:

In the wake of Friday's terrorist attacks in Paris, a growing number of Republican U.S. governors say they oppose allowing refugees from Syria to settle within their states.

As criticism mounts over its business practices, multinational drug company Valeant Pharmaceuticals will hold a conference call Monday morning, in an effort to persuade Wall Street not to bail on its stock.

"We look forward to our call on Monday where we will address and refute recent allegations," said J. Michael Pearson, chairman and chief executive officer, in a statement.

The end could soon be near for Kodak, and the iconic film manufacturer may have itself to blame.

Kodak, based in Rochester, N.Y., could be headed into bankruptcy over the next few weeks. The company has seen its profits plunge in recent years, largely because of the popularity of digital cameras.

Kodak is trying to move into new product lines like inkjet printers, but in the meantime it's attempting to raise cash by selling off some of the patents it's developed over the years.

Over the next few weeks, European leaders have a big task ahead of them. They have to begin fleshing out that big bailout plan unveiled to so much fanfare in Brussels this week. The plan represents the most comprehensive effort so far to resolve Europe's grinding debt problems, which have done so much damage to the world's financial markets this year, but some issues may require a global effort to solve.

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