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China's buying spree
Shuanghui is China's largest meat-processing company and it's trying to purchase US pork producer Smithfield Foods.
June 4th, 2013
04:32 PM ET

China's buying spree

By Barbara Hall, CNN

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

(CNN) – For the past several years China has been on a spending spree. Chinese companies are working with their government to acquire assets all over the world. Things like technology companies, banks, ports and real estate.

But last week's announcement that a Chinese meat producer had agreed to buy Virginia-based Smithfield Foods raised more than a few eyebrows. That's because Smithfield is the world's largest processor of pork, selling ham, hot dogs and bacon under popular brand names like Armor and Farmland.

University of California-Irvine economist Peter Navarro worries that deals like this one help China gain too much control over the American economy:

[1:31] “We're getting deeper and deeper into debt with a country that doesn't have our best interests at heart. This is not Canada. This is not Great Britain. It's a country which is growing the biggest military in the world to challenge us .” FULL POST

The cost of investing in art
'Onement VI' by Barnett Newman was sold at Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern Art for $43.8 million on May 14, 2013.
June 2nd, 2013
07:00 AM ET

The cost of investing in art

By Jonathan Binder, CNN

Follow @jbinder

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

(CNN) – Earlier this month in New York, the two renown art auction houses, Sotheby’s and Christie’s, both had record setting sales.

At Christie’s, one of Jackson Pollock’s iconic drip paintings “No. 19, 1948” was sold for $58 million, which crushed the painting's previous sale in 1993 of just $2.4 million.

Works from 12 contemporary artists like Roy Lichtenstein and Jean-Michel Basquiat, sold for record prices. The sale of postwar and contemporary art at Christie’s totaled $495 million – the highest sales figure at any art auction.

The night before Christie’s auction on May 14 was Sotheby’s sale of contemporary art. The featured work was Barnett Newman’s "Onement VI." The final price tag: $43.8 million. FULL POST

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Filed under: Culture • Economy • Soundwaves • Stories
The volatile mix of Tweets and trades
The AP confirmed with another tweet that their account was hacked and the news from the White House was false.
May 1st, 2013
11:32 AM ET

The volatile mix of Tweets and trades

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

By Jonathan Binder, CNN

Follow on Twitter: @jbinder

(CNN) -  Last week, a fake news story got tweeted from a hacked Associate Press twitter account. Within about two minutes, the stock market sunk over 100 points, but then came back to the surface soon afterwards. An event only made possible by the speed and robotic actions of High Frequency Trading.

Much of the quick back-and-forth trading that swings the market up and down is done by computers. Thousands of trades happen every second. It's because companies have created algorithms to scour the web for information on the market and then acts on that information, in the form of automatic trading. FULL POST

A taxpayer bailout may be needed at FHA
A boarded up home is seen on April 6, 2011 in Richmond, California.
April 12th, 2013
05:37 PM ET

A taxpayer bailout may be needed at FHA

By Barbara Hall, CNN

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

(CNN) – This week President Obama released his $3.7 trillion budget. Even though there's added spending in it, the White House argues that spending will help the economy grow. Not surprisingly, Republicans say it's not fiscally responsible.

Among the budget line items Republicans don't like is the prediction that the Federal Housing Administration, or FHA, will need a $943 million bailout. Real estate and personal finance expert Ilyce Glink says that's because the FHA is required to have a capital cushion of 2 percent of its loan balances. Currently, it doesn't.

[1:34] “The problem is, with the Great Recession, the number of people who have gone into foreclosure has been huge.” FULL POST

March 12th, 2013
10:09 AM ET

'Leaning in' on her own

By Libby Lewis, CNN

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

(CNN) - Bonnie Roskes is 43, the same age as Sheryl Sandberg, the CEO of Facebook and the woman who's essentially re-booting a new effort to get working women into more leadership positions.

Roskes is smart and educated. And she’s taken a very different path by forming her own company that produces educational materials that teach anyone how to create with 3D.

It started with one book and now she has whole series of books: 3D projects, geometry projects, and there’s an interior design book. FULL POST

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Filed under: Behavior • Culture • Economy • Media • Soundwaves • Stories
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