Planet Money


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Subscribers: 31569
Reviews: 64

 Mar 1, 2020

 Feb 22, 2020
How much did Michael Milken pay you for that fawning piece on his pardon? What a one sided pos! Go take a shower - that was disgusting!

sean marquis
 Feb 21, 2020
I've been listening for years. entertaining and informative.

 Feb 11, 2020

e moore
 Jan 24, 2020
Holy crapola, please learn how to say puTin and any other word with a hard consonant in the middle of a word. Please PuTin not poo'in


The economy explained. Imagine you could call up a friend and say, "Meet me at the bar and tell me what's going on with the economy." Now imagine that's actually a fun evening.

Episode Date
#988: The Economics Of Hospital Beds
Bellevue, the oldest public hospital in the nation, has seen everything and survived everything. But even they might not have enough beds. Here's why. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Apr 04, 2020
#987: The Race To Make Ventilators
Ventilators are the supply and demand problem of the COVID pandemic. We go inside the scramble to build more, fast. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 31, 2020
#986: America Unemployed
A record number of Americans filed for unemployment this week. The system isn't designed for this. What's next? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 28, 2020
#985: Where Do We Get $2,000,000,000,000?
The COVID-19 rescue bill is the largest ever. Where will that money come from? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 26, 2020
#984: Food And Farmworkers
To find out what's happening with our food, we talk to an economist, a farmer, and, of course, farmworkers. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 25, 2020
#983: You Asked About The Virus Economy
Some answers: The deal with toilet paper; stock market circuit breakers; coronabucks; corporate paper & how to help. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 24, 2020
#982: How To Save The Economy Now
Neel Kashkari is the President of the Minneapolis Fed. And he's run a bailout of an economy already. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 20, 2020
#981: How To Test A Country
Making a test for a pandemic — which rules should you keep, and which to bend? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 19, 2020
#980: The Fed Fights The Virus
The central bank is trying to prevent a health crisis from becoming a financial crisis. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 16, 2020
#979: Medicine For The Economy
COVID-19 is hammering our economy. We ask three super smart economists what we should do about it. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 14, 2020
#978: Coronavirus, Oil, and Kansas
Oil prices are way down. We follow the story from an outbreak in China, to a meeting in Vienna, to a small-time oilman in Kansas. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 11, 2020
#977: Where's The Vaccine?
Coronaviruses didn't come out of nowhere. They've actually been around for years. But economics makes it hard to find a vaccine. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 07, 2020
#976: Terms Of Service
An online review turns into a fine-print nightmare — until the victims fight back. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Mar 05, 2020
#975: Reparations In New Zealand
A wool magnate gets pulled into a fight with the government over reparations. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 28, 2020
#826: Vodka Proof
Vodka is the best-selling spirit in the United States, and there are zillions of brands. But is there any difference between them? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 26, 2020
#974: Michael Milken
Michael Milken once made $550 million in one year. Then, he went to prison. This week, the President pardoned him. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 21, 2020
#973: Indicate This
From our daily podcast The Indicator: How Amazon Prime packages reach you so damn fast? And why Lancaster, PA became the refugee capital of America?
Feb 19, 2020
#972: The CryptoQueen
A mysterious woman promises a financial revolution. That promise leads to greed, corruption and... a beauty pageant. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 15, 2020
#971: Our Valentines 2020
We're sending valentines to books, ideas, and other stuff we love. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 12, 2020
#970: Raw Milk Deal
A farmer in California built an empire dealing raw milk. And then the Feds showed up. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 07, 2020
#772: Small Change
How fast is the world really changing? The answer affects everything from how we live, to whether robots really will take all our jobs. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 05, 2020
#969: The Island No One Owns
In Barbuda, land isn't a thing you buy. It's something you just... have. Put up a fence and it's yours. But all that might change. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Feb 01, 2020
#968: The Trouble With Table 101
We re-engineer a restaurant with a consultant so good, she can move a table a few inches, and make thousands of dollars. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 30, 2020
#967: Escheat Show
You may be owed money. The government may decide to just use it. So we go looking for it inside a little-known "lost and found" of forgotten fortunes. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 24, 2020
#966: The Rise Of Putin
Our friends at Throughline dive into the life of Vladimir Putin and try to understand how he became Russia's new "tsar." | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 23, 2020
#965: Das Green Old Deal
We team up with Vox's The Impact, to tell the story of how one man changed the way Germany – and arguably the world – uses energy. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 17, 2020
We are dedicating an entire show to billboards: good and old-fashioned, or fancy and high-tech. And we put up our own. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 16, 2020
#963: 13,000 Economists. 1 Question.
We went to the American Economic Association's annual conference and asked: What's the most useful idea in economics? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 10, 2020
#386: The Cost Of Free Doughnuts
Free is cool, but it can backfire. On today's show, what happens when you take something that's free and give it a price. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 08, 2020
#962: Advanced Fairness At The Marathon
Four lessons for creating fairness from a big race in New York. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 04, 2020
#216: How Four Drinking Buddies Saved Brazil
Inflation in Brazil was out of control for a decade. Four former drinking buddies from grad school fixed it. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jan 01, 2020
#961: The Rest Of The Story, 2019
A lot can happen after we put an episode out into the world. In The Rest Of The Story, we check-in on stories we've reported. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here
Dec 27, 2019
#960: The Writers Revolt
In April, 7,000 TV writers across the U.S. fired their agents. All on the same day. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 25, 2019
#959: Things We Learned in 2019
Tom Whitwell made an amazing list of 52 things he learned this year. We dig into our favorite items. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 21, 2019
#958: When Reagan Broke the Unions
When air traffic controllers went on strike in 1981, Reagan gave them 48 hours to return. Labor would never be the same. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 19, 2019
#957: You're Giving Your Boss A Loan
Getting paid twice a month is like loaning money to your boss. What if you got paid every day? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 14, 2019
#592: The Bell Wars
The two biggest handbell companies in the world have been locked in a feud for decades. Why? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 11, 2019
#956: The Carriage Tax
People have been arguing over the constitutionality of wealth taxes since 1794, when Washington put a tax on carriages.| Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 07, 2019
#773: Slot Flaw Scofflaws
Where there are casinos, there are people trying to cheat. And now, they're using iPhones. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Dec 04, 2019
#955: Pirate Videos
Blackbeard, a filmmaker, and a fight between two powerful forces in American law. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 29, 2019
#674: We Cooked A Peacock
In the 1600s, a good spice rub was the ultimate display of wealth. People would risk their lives for a sack of cloves. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 27, 2019
#954: What Is Foreign Interference, Anyway?
We've heard a lot about illegal foreign meddling in the United States elections. But what about legal foreign participation? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 22, 2019
#953: Three Sides Of A Car Loan
7 million Americans are at least 3 months behind on car payments. It's a record but is it a crisis? | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 20, 2019
#952: Sperm Banks
Denmark is a big exporter of human sperm. And mad cow disease may have helped. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 16, 2019
#951: Snakebite
Snakebites are common but antivenom is expensive to develop. So a doctor goes to extreme lengths to find a solution. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 13, 2019
#950: Overrated Or Underrated?
Today on the show, economist Tyler Cowen rates the NBA, Karl Marx, Adam Smith, the humanities, your neighbors, and more. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 08, 2019
#777: Free Love, Free Market
A free-love commune of perfectionists in upstate New York embraced the free market, and became a blockbuster brand. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 06, 2019
#949: The Pigou Club
A hundred years ago, economist Arthur Cecil Pigou explained how to tax things like pollution. Countries are starting to do it. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Nov 02, 2019
#948: A Series Of Unfortunate Recessions
A Halloween journey into the economists' worst nightmare, an endless time loop of recession after recession after... | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 31, 2019
#947: Some-of-the-Money Ball
Income pools could change the way baseball players, and maybe the rest of us, think about how we get paid. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 25, 2019
#946: Fries Of The Future
Fast food delivery is threatening the french fry. So a band of potato scientists go to work. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 23, 2019
#945: The Liberty City
A man in Texas had a dream: To build a whole new kind of city, with no property tax, no debt, and a whole lot of freedom. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 19, 2019
#753: Blockchain Gang
Charlie Shrem went from living in his parents' basement, to bitcoin millionaire, to federal prison in just a few years. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 16, 2019
#944: We Should Have Mentioned That
Sometimes we forget to mention something. And our listeners always let us know. Today on the show, we make good. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 11, 2019
#763: BOTUS
Two years ago, we built a machine that bought and sold stocks automatically based on President Trump's tweets. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 09, 2019
#943: Unicorn Cowboy
The risk-addicted investor who made WeWork possible and changed the way startups work. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 04, 2019
#942: Capitalism In The Courtroom
Investors can fund lawsuits for profit, which gives more people access to the courts. But some worry it will warp the justice system. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Oct 02, 2019
#941: Three Bets
We jog to New Jersey to bet on tennis, we solve a mystery in Las Vegas, and we venture into the world of video game loot. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 28, 2019
#770: When India's Cash Disappeared
When India suddenly got rid of most of its cash, in an effort to end corruption and modernize its economy, chaos ensued. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 25, 2019
#940: Interest Rates... Why So Negative?
All over the world, interest rates are very, very low. In some places, they're negative: you lend out money, and get less back. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 20, 2019
#658: Strike One
Strikes these days are pretty boring. But they weren't always like this. In the past, strikers risked their lives. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 18, 2019
#939: The Working Tapes Of Studs Terkel
Hear what ordinary people told Studs Terkel about their jobs in the 70s — and what they have to say now. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 13, 2019
#794: How To Make It In The Music Business
The hidden economy of producers buying and selling sonic snippets, texting each other beats, and angling for royalties. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 11, 2019
#938: The Marshall Plan
Sometimes the way to help yourself is to help your enemy. After WWII, the U.S. launched what might be the most successful intervention in history, rebuilding Germany and also the rest of Western Europe. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 07, 2019
#371: Where Dollar Bills Come From
Every dollar bill in the world comes from the same paper mill in Massachusetts. Today on the show, we get a front-row seat to the dollar-making process. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Sep 04, 2019
#937: Moving To Opportunity?
In the 90s, the government ran an experiment: What happens if we move people out of high-poverty neighborhoods and into low-poverty ones? Housing policy as hope? The results surprised them. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Aug 30, 2019
#936: The Modal American
Kenny takes Jacob on a nerdy quest to find the "typical American." Naturally, it ends up harder⁠—and nerdier⁠—than we planned, and the answer is more subtle than we expected. | Subscribe to our newsletter here.
Aug 29, 2019
935: You Asked For A Food Show
The top producer of Top Chef helps us spice up this food edition of listener questions. How do you master the salad bar? Why do Americans refrigerate eggs? The story of Choco Pies and more. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Aug 23, 2019
#934: Two Yield Curve Indicators
An inverted yield curve has predicted recessions for the past six decades. The curve is inverted right now. What does that tell us? | Subscribe to our newsletter here.
Aug 21, 2019
#933: Find The Helium
Helium is so special, and so rare, that the U.S. government once tried to buy it all up. And hide it. But the government's helium stockpile is running low. And we need it for MRI machines and NASA rockets.
Aug 16, 2019
#616: How Solar Got Cheap
For a long time, only rich people could afford to put solar panels on the roof. Not anymore. Here's what changed.
Aug 14, 2019
#932: Deep Learning With The Elephants
Elephants are in danger. Counting them is crucial to saving them. But they're hard to see in the rainforest. So scientists are enlisting the help of AI technology.
Aug 09, 2019
#931: The IT Guy Vs. The Con Artist
A notorious con artist offered Felipe an IT job. He took the job —and tried to con the con man. | Plus, listen to a full double feature all about cons here.
Aug 07, 2019
#930: Twins
Scientists have studied twins for years, hoping to figure out how big a role genes play in human behavior. Our very own pair of twin reporters are on the case.
Aug 03, 2019
#598: That Time We Shorted America, Part Two
Everyone said betting against the entire stock market was a terrible idea. We did it anyway. Today, we find out the results, and revisit the first short ever done in the 17th century.
Jul 31, 2019
#597: That Time We Shorted America, Part One
Today on the show, we ignore the advice of some very smart people and bet against something people love.
Jul 26, 2019
#929: Could A Wealth Tax Work?
Elizabeth Warren wants to tax the wealth of the mega-rich to help fix inequality. Europe tried this, and failed. Can it work in the U.S.?
Jul 24, 2019
#928: Hong Kong
In 1960, a 12-year-old boy left mainland China, hidden in the bottom of a fishing boat. He later became one of Hong Kong's richest people. His story is the story of Hong Kong.
Jul 19, 2019
#927: The Indicator In The House
Two highlights from our daily podcast, The Indicator, about houses. A plan to lower rents pits state against city, and a private firefighter breaks down his business for us.
| Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
Jul 18, 2019
#926: So, Should We Recycle?
Cities might be picking up your recyclables, but there is a very good chance they aren't being recycled. And that might be a good thing...if you really care about the planet. Part two of a two-part series. ⎸Subscribe to our newsletter here.
Jul 13, 2019
#925: A Mob Boss, A Garbage Boat and Why We Recycle
In 1987, an Alabama man had an idea. So he made a deal with the mob. And ended up with 3,186 tons of trash no landfill would take. This is the accidental birth of recycling in the U.S. ⎸Subscribe to our newsletter here.
Jul 10, 2019
#924: Stuck In China's Panopticon
China is building a high-tech surveillance state to capture minorities' every move and word. We go inside it and find that some Americans are involved. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter
Jul 05, 2019
#752: Eagles vs. Chickens
A farmer in Georgia became more in tune with nature. Then eagles started killing his chickens. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter:
Jul 03, 2019
#923: Good Teachers, Bad Deal
Teachers made a deal with the Department of Education. They kept their end of the bargain. Why didn't the government?
Jun 28, 2019
#922: The Cost of Getting Your Money Back
Accidentally sending $1,500 to a stranger on Venmo reveals just how hard it is to get your money back in the new economy.
Jun 27, 2019
#921: Tales From The Parking Lot
Three stories: A tire-booting vigilante, a surge price conspiracy, and the civil rights fight over parking tickets.
Jun 21, 2019
#920: What Should We Be Worried About?
The economic recovery turns 10 this month. Don't get too comfortable. There's plenty to be worried about.
Jun 19, 2019
#919: Are Cities Overrated?
Big cities used to be the land of opportunity for most people. But with changes in work, some economists are wondering: Are cities overrated?
Jun 14, 2019
#590: The Planet Money Workout
Gyms don't want you to workout. Or at least, not often. It's better for business that way. Economics explains why.
Jun 12, 2019
#918: The Day Of Two Noons
People didn't always know what time it was. But in the nineteenth century, a high school principal, a scientist, and a railroad bureaucrat synchronized the nation.
Jun 07, 2019
#651: The Salmon Taboo
In Japan, salmon used to be garbage fish. Today, it's a delicacy. How one Norwegian with a lot of extra fish changed the tastes of a nation.
Jun 05, 2019
#917: Quit Threat!
Sometimes an economy can get so strong the power dynamic between bosses and workers flips: Full employment. Are we there yet?
May 31, 2019
#916: The Whistleblower Whisperer
Jordan Thomas is a lawyer who represents some of Wall Street's biggest whistleblowers. The life that led him here is extraordinary.
May 29, 2019
#915: How To Meddle In An Election
In which someone runs a science experiment on an actual election, on actual voters, to test the persuasive power of ethically sketchy methods.
May 24, 2019
#914: Trump and Deutsche, A Long Affair
After Donald Trump's companies declared four bankruptcies, several major banks stopped loaning him money. But Deutsche Bank didn't.
May 23, 2019
#913: Counting The Homeless
From renting hotels to a jobs report-like census in the night, we look at ways communities are helping the homeless.
May 18, 2019
#407: A Mathematician, The Last Supper, And The Birth Of Accounting
The story of an innovation that changed the way the world works, and of the man who made this innovation possible: Luca Pacioli.
May 15, 2019
#912: How Uncle Jamie Broke Jeopardy
James Holzhauer took data, probability and a lot of practice with a fake buzzer, and turned it into a fortune on a game show.
May 10, 2019
#911: You Asked The Listener Question Hotline
We answer a bunch of the questions you asked — and even one you *didn't* ask.
May 08, 2019
#910: Economics, Sexism, Data
A young economist holds a mirror up to her field. And starts a national conversation about women in economics.
May 03, 2019
#416: Why The Price of Coke Didn't Change For 70 years
For 70 years, the price of a bottle of Coca-Cola stayed a nickel. Why? The answer includes a half a million vending machines and a 7.5 cent coin.
May 01, 2019
#909: Dollar Stores Vs Lettuce
Every six hours a new dollar store opens in the U.S. Are they killing grocery stores?
Apr 27, 2019
#908: I Am Not A Robot
The remarkable story of the online "CAPTCHA" tests we've all taken to prove that we're not robots.
Apr 24, 2019
#907: Two Spring Indicators
The Indicator from Planet Money explores trade wars, peanuts, hurricanes, and happiness.
Apr 19, 2019
#644: How Much Does This Cow Weigh?
We wanted to understand an eerie phenomenon that drives everything from the stock market to the price of orange juice. So we asked you to guess the weight of a cow.
Apr 17, 2019
#906: The Chicago Boys, Part II
How a ruthless dictator, and a bunch of economists known as the Chicago Boys, took Chile from socialism to capitalism.
Apr 12, 2019
#905: The Chicago Boys, Part I
In the late 1950s and early '60s a handful of Chilean students went to study economics at the University of Chicago. What they learned changed their country.
Apr 11, 2019
#904: Joke Theft
Copyrighting comedy is expensive. So comedians have devised an informal system of sanctions to protect their jokes from theft. Sometimes it works.
Apr 06, 2019
#760: Tax Hero
Joe Bankman, professor at Stanford, figured out a way to make filing your taxes easy and painless. Then the tax lobby found out about it.
Apr 04, 2019
#903: A New Way To Pay For College
Some colleges are offering students a new way to pay. It's not a scholarship. It's not a loan. It's more like the students are selling stock in themselves.
Mar 29, 2019
#902: The Phoebus Cartel
The story behind two sneaky forces that drive us to buy more products, more often: Planned obsolescence and psychological obsolescence.
Mar 28, 2019
#901: Bad Cops Are Expensive
There's an industry of people working to eliminate bad police behavior. They're not activists or protestors. They're insurers.
Mar 22, 2019
#189: Why A Dead Shark Costs $12 Million
Today's show is about the fickle market for art. What makes a dead shark cost $12 million, and a photo of steel wool that looks like a tornado cost only $1,265?
Mar 20, 2019
#900: The Stolen Company
When an American company named ABRO learns their goods are being counterfeited in China, they start their own trade war.
Mar 15, 2019
#724: Cat Scam
The internet was supposed to get rid of middlemen--but instead they are taking over the global economy.
Mar 13, 2019
#899: Mexico Fights The Fuel Pirates
Thieves are stealing billions of dollars worth of gasoline in Mexico. The President is taking drastic action to cut them off, and it comes at a serious cost. Content warning: Audio of deadly pipeline explosion.
Mar 08, 2019
#785: The Starbury
The story of an NBA All-Star and an experiment: To make a desirable basketball shoe cheap enough for anyone.
Mar 07, 2019
#898: Happy Fed Independence Day
The story of the day the Federal Reserve got its independence and the fight—an actual physical fight—to keep it.
Mar 02, 2019
#897: New Orleans Vs. Airbnb
Airbnb has changed New Orleans. And now landlords and preservationists are fighting over the future of the city.
Feb 28, 2019
Antitrust 3: Big Tech
What does the rise of dominant tech companies say about competition and the state of antitrust law? Third in a series.
Feb 22, 2019
Antitrust 2: The Paradox
How Robert Bork won the fight over the very meaning of competition in America, and paved the way for some of the biggest companies we've ever seen.
Feb 20, 2019
Antitrust 1: Standard Oil
At the turn of the 20th century, Ida Tarbell investigated John D. Rockefeller's Standard Oil. What she discovered changed the economy of the United States.
Feb 15, 2019
#418: A Fake Bank For Money Laundering Run By The Government
To catch drug traffickers, the U.S. government tried something it had never tried before. It set up and ran a fake offshore bank for money laundering. Fake name. Fake employees. Real drug money.
Feb 14, 2019
#893: Our Valentines 2019
We give a shout out to the stuff we've been obsessing over in the office — those stories that were so good, we wished we had thought of them ourselves.
Feb 08, 2019
#892: The Lost Plane
In December, a commercial flight had to make an emergency landing in Iran. They discovered that landing there would be easy. Getting out – much, much harder.
Feb 07, 2019
#891: Who Won The Bet Over Bitcoin?
Five years ago, two sides met on our show to make a bet about the future of bitcoin. Today, we announce the winner.
Feb 01, 2019
#825: Who Started The Wildfire?
After a wildfire, teams of investigators start combing the wreckage for clues. Finding the cause means, maybe, finding someone to pay. But where's the line between a natural disaster and a human one?
Jan 30, 2019
#890: The Division Problem
Today on the show, we take on one of life's most vexing problems: Sharing.
Jan 25, 2019
#688: Brilliant Vs. Boring
John Bogle died last week. His creation — the index fund — changed investing. Today, how his invention set off a million dollar bet between some of the biggest brains on Wall Street, including Warren Buffett.
Jan 23, 2019
#889: The Pay-What-You-Want Experiment
In 2010, Panera launched several pay-what-you-want cafes. On today's show: How this charitable experiment worked out.
Jan 18, 2019
#888: The First Shutdown
In 1879, Congress and the President were locked in a battle over the rights of African-Americans. It led to the first government shutdown.
Jan 17, 2019
#887: You Asked For It, Yet Again
On today's show we answer questions about silver dollars, Venmo, and Brexit. Why? Because you asked!
Jan 12, 2019
#690: All In
We go inside a professional poker tournament, where some of the smartest betting takes place behind the scenes.
Jan 09, 2019
#886: The Price of a Hack
Hackers are an expensive headache for companies. But there might be a simple economic fix.
Jan 04, 2019
#885: Do It For Your Country
People are the engine that fuels an economy. But what happens when you start running out of people?
Jan 02, 2019
#884: The Rest Of The Story, Winter 2018
We check in on some stories we did this year to see what's changed. Find a full list of the episodes we referenced at our website,
Dec 28, 2018
#609: The Curse Of The Black Lotus
How the card game "Magic: The Gathering" deflated a speculative bubble. You can support our show at
Dec 26, 2018
BONUS INDICATOR: The Calculator That Time Forgot
Most products in this world are vulnerable to creative destruction: as new products are developed, they make old ones obsolete. But there are some exceptions — products that persist, resisting change while economic evolution continues without them. For instance: the graphing calculator. (This episode is from our other podcast, The Indicator from Planet Money. Subscribe to it wherever you get your podcasts.)
Dec 24, 2018
#883: A Very Planet Money Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens wanted to pick a fight with economists. So he invented Ebenezer Scrooge. But did he get it all right? Also: If you want to support our show, head over to We appreciate it.
Dec 21, 2018
#882: Synthetic Reefer Madness
How a professor invented a formula for synthesizing cannabinoids and unintentionally helped launch a drug revolution.
Dec 20, 2018
BONUS INDICATOR: The Measure Of A Tragedy
Ricardo Hausmann, a Harvard-based Venezuelan economist, has constructed his own indicator, one that captures the horrifying scale of the economic catastrophe in Venezuela. (This episode is from our other podcast, The Indicator. Subscribe to it wherever you get your podcasts.)
Dec 17, 2018
#881: The Prisoners of the Trade War
A truce in the U.S.-China trade war seemed close. The leaders of China and the United States were meeting to discuss a fix. And then arrests started. It got even more confusing, so today, we call up our man on the ground in Shanghai to make sense of it all. The key to understanding the latest turn in the trade war centers around a giant company most Americans haven't heard of called Huawei. Its rise traces the rise of China's economy and Chinese-style capitalism.
Dec 15, 2018
#539: What's A Penny Worth?
We try to figure out what makes cents.
Dec 13, 2018
#880: Is Amazon Good For New York?
It feels like all of New York City is arguing about Amazon's new office in Queens. But what do the people in Long Island City think?
Dec 07, 2018
#533: Why Car Safety Is A Trade Barrier
The U.S. and Europe just can't agree on car safety standards. That puts car companies in a weird position, makes cars cost more and just seems kind of random and wasteful.
Dec 06, 2018
#879: The Secret Target
Their plan was dangerous, risky, and extremely unpopular. But America copied them anyway. Today on the show: how a tiny country on the other side of the world changed how America runs its economy.
Dec 01, 2018
#468: Kid Rock Vs. The Scalpers
We talk to Kid Rock about how he tried to cut scalpers out of the business — and still sell cheap tickets to his shows.
Nov 28, 2018
VIDEO: The Price Of Coke Stayed The Same For 70 Years — Why?
For 70 years, a Coca-Cola cost a nickel. The price didn't change. How is that even possible? You can also watch the video here:
Nov 26, 2018
#878: Mugshots For Sale
We go deep inside the market for online mugshots. Is it extortion? Or is it a First Amendment right?
Nov 23, 2018
#877: The Laws of The Office
You get what you measure. Work expands to fill the time allotted. Who comes up with this stuff? And is it true?
Nov 21, 2018
VIDEO: Put A Chip On It
A quick history of slow credit cards. This video also available here:
Nov 19, 2018
#699: Kansas City Vs. Kansas City
A bunch of you asked why so many cities threw billions in tax breaks at Amazon. It reminded us of an episode we did in 2016.
Nov 17, 2018
#876: Patent Deception
How World Patent Marketing stole nearly $26 million. And how the acting attorney general was involved.
Nov 15, 2018
VIDEO: A Grave Promise
If you die in America, chances are the cemetery is going to promise to maintain your grave forever. Americans take this for granted, but it's a wacky, wild promise that we maybe should not be making. You can also watch this video here:
Nov 12, 2018
#875: Why Did The Cow Cross The Border?
To take advantage of the surprising benefits provided by an interlocked economic system on the other side.
Nov 10, 2018
#874: Hot Dog Hail Mary
The Falcons are trying something radical: Making their food cheaper. It could break stadium economics.
Nov 07, 2018
VIDEO: Inventing Price Tags
For most of human history, you had to haggle over prices before you could buy something. Then came the idea of the price tag.
Nov 05, 2018
#873: The Seattle Experiment
Seattle's radical solution to big money in politics: Flood elections with even more money.
Nov 02, 2018
#872: The Halloween Tapes
Something spooky has been happening here at Planet Money.
Oct 31, 2018
Video: The Miracle Apple
We're kicking off a quick season of our bonus video series, Planet Money Shorts. Watch how apples became brands, and started being more than delicious.
Oct 30, 2018
#871: Blacklisted In China
China is trying a bold experiment to help people trust each other more: The social credit score. Will it work? Does it go too far?
Oct 26, 2018
#676: The First Lottery & How To Beat The Odds
The first lottery was a royal affair with poems, golden flatware and invited criminals. Also, how someone won the lottery over and over.
Oct 23, 2018
#870: Trump vs. Red Tape
President Trump promised to slash regulations. How has he done?
Oct 19, 2018
#453: What Causes What?
We try to tell the difference between correlation and causation.
Oct 17, 2018
#869: The Student Loan Whistleblower
Seth Frotman worked overseeing student loans for the government. He saw things that made him quit, and tell all.
Oct 12, 2018
#534: The History of Light (Nobel Edition)
Bill Nordhaus just won the economics Nobel. In this show: He shows how history of light is the history of economic growth — of things getting faster, cheaper, and more efficient.
Oct 08, 2018
#868: Moneyland
We follow writer Oliver Bullough as he explores how stolen money moves around the world, and what that might mean for democracies.
Oct 05, 2018
#680: Anatomy Of A Scam
Ever seen one of those signs asking if you want to work from home? We find out what happens when you call.
Oct 03, 2018
#867: Special Report: Asylum Crackdown
We tell the story of a massive crackdown on asylum fraud, and the fallout.
Sep 29, 2018
#866: Modern Monetary Theory
We rethink everything we know about government spending, taxes, the nature of money... All of it.
Sep 27, 2018
#865: Tweak This
We propose small fixes for baseball, weddings, salary negotiations and buying your morning coffee. Warning: They may be too rational.
Sep 21, 2018
#657: The Tale Of The Onion King
How one man took the onion market hostage.
Sep 19, 2018
#864: The Central (Bankers') Question
We crash a party of central bankers to get an answer to one of the biggest economic questions of our time.
Sep 15, 2018
For Our 10th Anniversary, Episode #1
In honor of our 10th anniversary, we revisit our very first episode.
Sep 12, 2018
#863: The 13th Hole
What a hole-in-one gone awry says about the state of charity.
Sep 08, 2018
#729: When Subaru Came Out
Subaru's sales had been slumping for years. Then they went straight to their biggest fans: Lesbians.
Sep 05, 2018
#862: Big Government Cheese
That time we accidentally created a cheese surplus so large it had to be stored in a ginormous cave.
Aug 31, 2018
#783: New Jersey Bails Out
California just did away with cash bail. But credit where credit is due. New Jersey already tried something similar.
Aug 29, 2018
#861: Food Scare Squad
When food makes people sick all around the country, an army of germ detectives jumps into action.
Aug 24, 2018
#444: New Jersey Wine
Today on the show: Could New Jersey become the next Napa?
Aug 22, 2018
#860: The World's Longest Yard Sale
Six states. Three days. One ugly cookie jar. Today on the show: Yard sale!
Aug 17, 2018
#613: Trash!
The line between trash and recycling is moving a lot these days. It's a tough time to be a recycler.
Aug 15, 2018
#859: You Asked For Even More
You have a lot of questions... about tariffs, unemployment rates, and RV dealerships, to name a few. We have answers.
Aug 10, 2018
#704: Open Office
This episode is for everyone who ever had to ask their coworkers to quiet down. Today on the show: We meet the man who stole your office door.
Aug 08, 2018
#858: Venezuela's Fugitive Money Traders
The Venezuelan government doesn't want you to know the real value of its currency. But Ruben and Mila figured it out. Now they're on the lam.
Aug 03, 2018
#857: The Postal Illuminati
Is there a secretive postal organization fixing international shipping rates, and giving American businesses a bad deal?
Aug 01, 2018
#856: Yes In My Backyard
There's a simple way to solve the housing crisis in U.S. cities. Only problem is, almost everybody hates it.
Jul 27, 2018
#855: The Poop Cartel
What happens when a group of economists applies the number one rule of economics... to number two?
Jul 25, 2018
#854: The New Socialists
Socialism was political poison in the U.S. for decades. Now it's gaining ground. Who are these new socialists? And what do they want?
Jul 20, 2018
#472: The One-Page Plan To Fix Global Warming Revisited
Tax carbon emissions. That's basically the whole plan. What's the hold up?
Jul 18, 2018
#853: Peak Sand
Sand. It's in buildings, windows, your cell phone. But there isn't enough in the world for everyone. And that's created a dangerous black market.
Jul 13, 2018
#427: LeBron James Is Still Underpaid
The best player in basketball is getting hosed. The NBA team owners, the players, the fans and even LeBron James himself want to keep it that way.
Jul 11, 2018
#852: Two Summer Indicators
Two stories from our Indicator team. There's a province in China that makes many of the world's flags. It's a unique window on global trade right now. And we find out why so few teenagers are working summer jobs these days.
Jul 06, 2018
#700: Peanuts And Cracker Jack
It takes strategy and skill to sell snacks at a baseball game. Meet the hot dog vending legend of Fenway Park.
Jul 03, 2018
#851: The Rest Of The Story Summer 2018
A pesticide wreaks havoc. A listener needs a bitcoin detective. And the search for the rarest economic good continues.
Jun 30, 2018
#850: The Fake Review Hunter
Fake product reviews are wrecking the internet. But help is on the way: From a bodybuilding fake review hunter.
Jun 27, 2018
VIDEO: The Chicken Tax
Which came first, the frozen chicken or the tax on foreign trucks? Just kidding, it was the frozen chicken — then came the American tax that helped shape the domestic market for trucks.
Jun 25, 2018
#682: When CEO Pay Exploded
Politicians have argued for decades that CEOs are overpaid. But there's this precise moment in the 1990s when CEO pay suddenly shot up. We find out what happened.
Jun 22, 2018
#849: It Takes Two To Make A Trade War Fight
President Trump says China is stealing U.S. technology. So we looked into one case. And things got a little complicated.
Jun 20, 2018
#848: The World's Biggest Battery
California has a ton of solar power. But as soon as night falls, it's gone. Today on the show: How to bottle the sun.
Jun 15, 2018
#847: Inventing Accidents
The medical world has been trying to cure color blindness for centuries. Then a glass scientist figured it out. By accident.
Jun 13, 2018
#846: Ungerrymandering Florida
When Florida outlawed partisan gerrymandering, politicians tried to sneak it back disguise.
Jun 09, 2018
#660: The T-Rex In My Backyard
Meet Sue, the dinosaur who sparked a gold rush for fossils buried in the badlands of North Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana.
Jun 06, 2018
#845: REDMAP
Meet the man who figured out how to reshape national politics by making tiny investments in the smallest of places.
Jun 02, 2018
#844: Nice Game
In game theory, sometimes the best way to win, is to lose.
May 31, 2018
#843: Swamp Gravy
Today on the show: A small town stakes its future on writing, directing, and starring in a musical.
May 25, 2018
#643: The Taxi King
Gene Freidman built a taxi empire. We visited him before he was in legal trouble.
May 23, 2018
#842: Showdown at the WTO
The World Trade Organization: Can't live with it, hard to crush your trade opponents without it.
May 18, 2018
#696: Class Action
Class actions run from big civil rights cases to arguments about pepper. Are they noble, or silly?
May 16, 2018
#841: The Land Of Duty Free
We meet the man who invented duty free shopping and find out if these tax free stores are really saving us any money.
May 11, 2018
#840: Fixing Chicken
Today on the show: A chicken index, some Wall Street investors, and an unlikely whistle-blower.
May 09, 2018
#839: The Indicator Goes To California
California is way more than Hollywood. Today on the show, we look at what else is going on in this powerhouse state economy.
May 04, 2018
#575: The Fondue Conspiracy
Today on the show: How a cheese cartel abandoned the rules of economics and convinced the world to eat fondue.
May 02, 2018
#838: A Series of Mysterious Packages
Unordered trinkets have been arriving at homes around the country. We try to find out why.
Apr 27, 2018
#640: The Bottom Of The Well
Today on the show: the economics of drought, and why the rational thing to do in California right now is use more water.
Apr 25, 2018
#837: The Belt, The Road And The Money
Today on the show, we connect the dots between New York, Uganda, Prague, and China's thirst for resources. (Music Credit: Thanks to musician Giovanni Kiyingi for the use of his song "Kaleeba" from the album Amakondeere.)
Apr 21, 2018
#836: The Rational Madness Of The Used Car Salesman
Why are used car commercials so annoying? Meet the original sinner.
Apr 19, 2018
#835: Tariffied
We're in a full-fledged trade war with China. We dig into the list of tariffs on American products. It gets weird...and delicious.
Apr 13, 2018
#661: The Less Deadly Catch
Today on the show: how an economic fix helped made the deadliest job in America safer, and why people are angry about it.
Apr 11, 2018
#834: NDA Tell-All
Today on the show, we talk to one of the most famous NDA breakers of all time, and ask: Is there a legal way out of your NDA?
Apr 07, 2018
#685: Larry vs. The IRS
What exactly would happen if you didn't pay your taxes? Today on the show, we follow one man who did just that.
Apr 04, 2018
#833: Worst. Tariffs. Ever.
Tariffs are stupid. This is one of the few things economists can agree on. Today, we bring you the story of the worst tariffs ever.
Mar 30, 2018
#832: Mulvaney Vs The CFPB
What happens when you put someone who wants to close an agency, in charge of that agency? Today on the show, we find out.
Mar 28, 2018
#671: An Insider Trader Tells All
A man who got caught insider trading explains everything — what he did, how he did it, and why.
Mar 23, 2018
#831: The Golden Rules
Planet Money joins the gold rush 170 years late. And the rules are still about the same. How did that happen?
Mar 21, 2018
#454: The Lollipop War
What do sugar farmers have against candy? A lot, according to candy manufacturers.
Mar 16, 2018
How did the social security number become the most important identifier in the United States? And is that even a good idea?
Mar 14, 2018
#829: Rigging The Economy
Two guys from different ends of the political spectrum agree that the economy is rigged. And they think they know who's responsible.
Mar 09, 2018
#677: The Experiment Experiment
There's something wrong with the way we're doing science. Today on the show, we find out how to fix it.
Mar 07, 2018
#828: You Asked For More
We ponder the price of chicken, safe haven currencies, and the cash value of coupons. Why? Because you asked.
Mar 02, 2018
#827: Three Indicators
What do human blood, the conservative tax plan, and beer hops tell us about the world? Find out in today's episode.
Feb 28, 2018
#826: The Vodka Proof
Vodka is the best selling spirit in the United States, and there are zillions of brands. But is there any difference between them?
Feb 23, 2018
#545: The Blue Pallet
How do you reinvent something as simple as the wooden shipping pallet?
Feb 21, 2018
#825: Who Started The Wildfire
After a wildfire, teams of investigators start combing the wreckage for clues. Finding the cause means, maybe, finding someone to pay. But where's the line between a natural disaster and a human one?
Feb 16, 2018
#824: Our Valentines
If you can't beat 'em, send 'em a valentine.
Feb 14, 2018
#823: Planet Monet
Investors are pouring money into art, and a lot of it is disappearing into storage. We try to find out where the art goes, and why it goes there.
Feb 09, 2018
#337: The Secret Document that Transformed China
In 1978, a group of farmers in a Chinese village wrote a contract and hid it in the roof of a hut. They were afraid the document might get them executed. Instead, it transformed the Chinese economy.
Feb 07, 2018
#822: The Shortest Super Bowl
How does the market for Super Bowl tickets work? And why did it collapse in 2015?
Feb 02, 2018
#821: The Other Davos
Billionaires, diplomats, thinkfluencers. This is the Davos everyone hears about. Today on the show, we take you to a different Davos.
Feb 01, 2018
#820: P Is For Phosphorus
Phosphate is a crucial element, for farming, and for life. And there aren't too many places to get it. What if it runs out?
Jan 26, 2018
#819: Tax Me If You Can
Douglas Bruce had a bold vision for Colorado.
Jan 25, 2018
#508: A Bet On The Future Of Humanity
A biologist predicts a population bomb that will lead to global catastrophe. An economist sees a limitless future for mankind. The result is one of the most famous bets in economics.
Jan 19, 2018
#818: The Problem Of The Root
The wild ginseng market has gone crazy. We go to a farm hidden in the Appalachian mountains to find out why.
Jan 18, 2018
#817: The Gun Man
Will 3-D printing make gun control impossible?
Jan 13, 2018
#489: The Invisible Plumbing Of Our Economy
Why does it take days to send money electronically?
Jan 10, 2018
#816: Bitcoin Losers
The Bitcoin market has gone crazy. And it's revealing something strange. A lot of people can't find their Bitcoins. We go looking for lost billions.
Jan 05, 2018
#273: When The U.S. Paid Off The Entire National Debt
What does a country with no debt look like? To find out, we went back to the United States in 1835.
Jan 03, 2018
#815: The Rest of the Story 2017
Every year at Planet Money, we take a cue from radio legend Paul Harvey and bring you "The Rest of the Story." It's a show where we check in on some of the episodes that we've done in the past year, and tell you what's changed.
Dec 29, 2017
#544: The M&M Anomaly
David Kestenbaum noticed that a pack of Milk Chocolate M&M's weighs 1.69 ounces, but a pack of Peanut Butter M&M's weighs 1.63 ounces. He had to know why. But the confectionary world has its secrets.
Dec 27, 2017
BONUS INDICATOR: How Airfare Is Changing
Why flying to small airports keeps costing more and more, just as flying to big airports is getting cheaper. (This episode is from our new podcast, The Indicator. Subscribe to it wherever you get your podcasts.)
Dec 25, 2017
#814: The Tax Plan Is Huge
Congress just passed the largest tax overhaul in decades. We dig in.
Dec 22, 2017
#670: The Santa Suit
Today on the show: A lawsuit over a Santa suit is a window into countless hidden fights that shape the stuff we buy. It's one man's battle against the U.S. government — and, in a way, against himself.
Dec 20, 2017
BONUS INDICATOR: Forget Neutrality
From our new podcast, The Indicator: Opponents of net neutrality argue that the government should get out of the way and let the market work, that's what leads to better service and more choice. We examine that logic.
Dec 18, 2017
#813: The Produce Show
Five reporters go to the New York Produce Show and Conference, each on a mission.
Dec 16, 2017
#812: High Rise, Low Returns
As a businessman, President Trump is known for his towering buildings. Today we tell the story of one of those skyscrapers and what it says about how and with whom Trump does business.
Dec 13, 2017
BONUS: The Indicator, From Planet Money
We've made a new show. You can subscribe to it now. It's called 'The Indicator'. It's for those times you want Planet Money to explain the news, quickly. It's short (about five minutes) and three days a week.
Dec 11, 2017
SPACE 4: 3 2 1
We've got a satellite. We got a rocket. We're heading to the launch pad.
Dec 09, 2017
SPACE 3: Rocket Shopping
We found a satellite. We tried to figure out what it would do. Now we need to choose our rocket.
Dec 07, 2017
SPACE 2: Wait, Why Are We Going To Space?
We hitched a ride on a satellite. Now we have to figure out what we're going to do up there.
Dec 01, 2017
SPACE 1: We're Going To Space
We really are going to space.
Nov 30, 2017
#807: Anatomy of a Hustle
What did Paul Manafort do, exactly? Robert Mueller's indictment is 31 pages of hard-to-understand financial crime. We try to figure it out.
Nov 24, 2017
#665: The Free Food Market
A while back, the charity Feeding America was a mess. It was sending pickles to food banks that wanted produce, and potatoes to Idaho. So they called some economists, and a free food market was born.
Nov 22, 2017
#806: Walmart's Pickle
Walmart and Amazon are in a battle to be the store where you buy everything. But when both companies sell everything, what sets them apart? Food inventions like a bright, red pickle!
Nov 17, 2017
#805: War And Peace And Cows
In South Sudan, there is a kind of money that works even through bank failures and unstable governments. But when war struck, it upended a whole economy: the economy of cows.
Nov 15, 2017
#672: Bagging the Birkin
Once you've got a Birkin bag, you've made it. But to get one, you need more than just money. Birkins always seem to be mysteriously out of stock. This is no accident.
Nov 10, 2017
#804: Your Cell Phone's A Snitch
Timothy Carpenter stole cell phones. Then his phone sold him out to the Feds. Now the Supreme Court has to decide how private our cell phone data should be.
Nov 08, 2017
#369: If Teens Ran the Fed
Once a year, teenagers from across the country team up and compete to run the U.S. Federal Reserve.
Nov 03, 2017
#803: Nudge, Nudge, Nobel
Why do smart people make dumb decisions? Figuring that out won Richard Thaler a Nobel Prize.
Nov 01, 2017
#802: The Hotel at the Center of the World
A Chinese company pays millions of dollars for a failing hotel in a small, rural town. We follow the trail of money, and it explains the world economy.
Oct 28, 2017
#579: Is the NCAA An Illegal Cartel?
In any other industry, it's illegal for a group of companies to get together and cap wages. What makes the NCAA different?
Oct 25, 2017
#801: The Death Show
Today on the show: death. We have four stories about how people prepare for death and what they leave behind for the living.
Oct 20, 2017
#581: Free Money
Bob Peterson claims to have found the thing people have sought for thousands of years — an investment guaranteed to double in value. He keeps it in a storage locker in Utah. It's protected by a single padlock.
Oct 18, 2017
#800: North Korea's Capitalists
Capitalism isn't supposed to exist in North Korea. But all over the country, small businesses are popping up, growing the nation's economy. And much of that money is going straight to the country's nuclear program.
Oct 14, 2017
#799: Corporate! Income! Tax!
Republicans are proposing big changes to the corporate income tax. Trillions of dollars are at stake. Here's what it all means.
Oct 11, 2017
#798: Bad Credit Bureau
For most of our lives, Equifax has been slurping up our financial data. Now the company's been hacked and our data is loose. Today, we trace this mess back to two brothers and one fateful decision.
Oct 07, 2017
#648: The Benefits of Bankruptcy
It might just be the secret weapon of the U.S. economy.
Oct 04, 2017
#797: Flood Money
Bill Pennington's house floods a lot: Three times in the last three years. And every time his house floods, the government pays to help him repair the damage. Is something wrong here?
Sep 29, 2017
#524: Mr Jones' Act
The government suspended the Jones Act last week, to allow non-US ships to move fuel to victims of hurricanes in Houston and Florida. Which once again made us wonder why the act even exists.
Sep 27, 2017
#796: The Basic Income Experiment
The basic income. A flat payment to citizens, without strings. Is it a progressive fever dream, or sensible policy? We may soon find out. The Finnish Government is testing it on 2,000 citizens.
Sep 22, 2017
#795: Is Record Breaking Broken?
The Guinness Book of World Records had a problem. It was a book. And books aren't selling as well as they used to. So Guinness changed what they were selling, and who they were selling to.
Sep 20, 2017
#794: How To Make It In The Music Business
Behind almost all popular music, there is this hidden economy of music producers buying and selling sonic snippets, texting each other half-finished beats, and angling for back-end royalties.
Sep 15, 2017
#647: Hard Work Is Irrelevant
Patty McCord helped create a workplace at Netflix that runs more like a professional sports team than a family. If you're not up to scratch, you're off the team. Is this the future of work?
Sep 13, 2017
#793: This Week in Time Bombs
We look at three time bombs Congress is sitting on: The federal budget, the debt ceiling, and DREAMers.
Sep 09, 2017
#628: This Ad's For You
Tom Burrell was the first black man in Chicago advertising. He went on to change the way we think about ads, and the way advertisers think about us.
Sep 06, 2017
#792: The Ransom Problem
When someone has been kidnapped, what do you do? If you pay ransom, you create a market for hostages. If you don't, people die. Different countries have different policies with different results.
Sep 02, 2017
#791: Tips From Spies
There's an entire universe of things spies are not allowed to tell us. Today on the show, a few of the teeny things they can say. They might come in handy.
Aug 30, 2017
#790: Rough Translation in Ukraine
Fake news from Russia helped spark a real war in Ukraine. What can Ukraine's fight against fake news teach the US?
Aug 25, 2017
#652: The Hydrox Resurrection
Hidden in the trash heap of commerce there is buried treasure. Abandoned brands--including trusted, beloved brands--are waiting to be claimed and reborn. Today on the show: A cookie comeback.
Aug 23, 2017
#789: Robocall Invasion
Your phone rings--it looks like your neighbor's calling. But instead, it's the creepiest scam of the year.
Aug 18, 2017
#653: The Anti-Store
Costco made shopping harder, and customers loved it. Now a new company is taking the Costco experience to new extremes.
Aug 16, 2017
#788: Robert And Kenny Go To The Fair
When we go to the state fair, we don't go for the rides, deep-fried tacos or the butter cow. We head straight for the vendor marketplace to meet the masters of the lost art of salesmanship.
Aug 11, 2017
#399: Can You Patent a Steak?
We visit the workshop of the meat inventor who came up with Steak-Umm and KFC's popcorn chicken. And we try to figure out what meat inventors tell us about patents and innovation.
Aug 09, 2017
#787: Google Is Big. Is That Bad?
Google just got hit with a multibillion-dollar antitrust fine. Here's what it tells us about competition, market power, and the biggest corporations on the planet.
Aug 04, 2017
#471: The Eddie Murphy Rule
We answer one of the most important questions in finance: What actually happens at the end of Trading Places?
Aug 02, 2017
#786: Rest of the Story 2017, Vol. 1
News moves fast. Some of our best stories from this year have new chapters. Here, we catch up on three: Dirty trademarks, trading bots, and the war against the bald eagle.
Jul 28, 2017
#629: Buy Low, Sell Prime
Sam Cohen buys stuff at big retail stores, then turns around and sells it on Amazon for a quick profit. It defies economic logic. But somehow, there's a whole multimillion-dollar industry doing this.
Jul 26, 2017
#785: The Starbury
Most athlete endorsements make a product more expensive. But what happens when an NBA All-Star uses his name to make a sneaker much, much cheaper? On today's show: How that worked out.
Jul 21, 2017
#594: Board Games
On today's show: The story of two guys who tried to cut the pay of a CEO at a small pneumatic tool company.
Jul 19, 2017
#784: Meeting The Russians
That meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer was two decades in the making. It began in 1996, when an adventurous American went to Russia, trying to make a buck.
Jul 14, 2017
#783: New Jersey Bails Out
Bail is broken. In New Jersey, defense attorneys, prosecutors, and judges banded together to try a dramatic solution: Blow it up.
Jul 12, 2017
#782: Budget Time
We run through the entire federal budget — in 10 minutes. More than $6 billion per second. Go.
Jul 07, 2017
#586: How Stuff Gets Cheaper
We visit a company where people work on figuring out how to make stuff get cheaper.
Jul 05, 2017
#781: The Money Fixers
In Washington, D.C., there is a place where millions of dollars of ripped, burned, and water-soaked dollar bills are made new. On today's show, we get inside that room.
Jun 30, 2017
#286: Libertarian Summer Camp
We visited a libertarian summer paradise. What we found: People paying in gold. Exotic bacon dishes. A nine-year-old selling alcohol.
Jun 28, 2017
#780: On Second Thought
Flip-floppers, this one's for you. Changing your mind is hard, but it's one of the smartest things you can do.
Jun 23, 2017
#779: Shrimp Fight Club
What happens when an unstoppable shrimp meets an unmovable senator? A researcher goes to Washington to defend herself, her shrimp, and science itself.
Jun 21, 2017
#778: What the Falcon's Up With Qatar?
Qatar was on top of the world. Seemingly overnight, it became a pariah. On this episode, we drill into a rift years in the making: It's a tale of falcons, kidnapping, and a glowing Saudi Arabian orb.
Jun 16, 2017
#610: The Prisoner's Solution
Today on the show, a businessman goes to prison, and decides he is going to disrupt the biggest captive market in America.
Jun 14, 2017
#777: Free Love, Free Market
How a free-love commune embraced the free market and became a blockbuster brand.
Jun 10, 2017
#776: Here We Grow Again
The president's budget promises 3% growth. Is that doable? Yes, but he won't like what it would take.
Jun 07, 2017
#775: The Pigweed Killer
A battle with a weed divides neighbors and leads one farmer to shoot another dead. Today's show: The hunt for a better pesticide gets way out of hand.
Jun 03, 2017
#599: The Invisible Wall
A man goes looking for the invisible wall that traps poor people in poverty. Finding it almost gets him killed.
May 31, 2017
#774: Unspeakable Trademark
You can name your business whatever you want. But the government won't register it as a trademark if it thinks it's offensive. It gets weird when you try to decide what is too offensive to trademark.
May 26, 2017
#773: Slot Flaws Scofflaws
As long as there have been casinos, people have tried to cheat them. The latest attempt was by a group of hackers who tried to take down slot machines using math, iPhones, and a whole lot of swiping.
May 24, 2017
#772: Small Change
How fast is the world really changing? The answer has implications for everything from how the next generation will live to whether robots really will take all our jobs.
May 19, 2017
#606: Spreadsheets!
The creation of the electronic spreadsheet transformed industries. But its effects ran deeper than that.
May 17, 2017
#771: When India's Cash Disappeared, Part Two
What happened when India's Prime Minister declared most of the paper money in India worthless? We travel to India to see what happened after the country's demonetization.
May 12, 2017
#770: When India's Cash Disappeared, Part One
Something incredible happened in India about six months ago. The government declared most of the paper money invalid. Demonetization they called it. Today, we meet the man who came up with the plan.
May 11, 2017
#769: Speed Dating For Economists
We visit a job market created by economists, for economists. It's a hyper-efficient, optimized system, tested by game theorists, tweaked by a Nobel Prize winner, but it requires comfortable shoes.
May 05, 2017
#768: A Chat With Ben Bernanke
Ten years ago, two little-known funds at Bear Stearns blew up, and the financial crisis was on its way. Today, we ask the person at the center of it all, former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, why it happened.
May 03, 2017
#553: The Dollar At The Center Of The World
Today on the show, how a New Hampshire hotel filled with boozing economists saved the global economy.
Apr 28, 2017
#767: Georgetown, Louisiana, Part Two
In 1838, the Maryland Jesuits sold 272 people, slaves, to pay the debts of Georgetown University. We talk with the descendants about what - if anything - they're owed.
Apr 27, 2017
#766: Georgetown, Louisiana, Part One
For the residents of a small Louisiana town, there's always been a question about their past: How'd they get there? Solving the mystery only raised more questions.
Apr 21, 2017
#765: The Holiday Industrial Complex
Where do holidays like National Potato Chip Day and Argyle Day come from? We trace the roots of one made-up holiday until we find out who is running the global holiday machine.
Apr 18, 2017
#381: When Business Loves Regulation
One in three American jobs require a license. Today on the show, why those licensing rules hurt the U.S. economy.
Apr 14, 2017
#764: Pub In A Box
One man figured out how to reproduce the magic of an Irish pub, and ship it in a container to anywhere in the world.
Apr 12, 2017
#763: BOTUS
On today's show, we get in on the future of investing. We build an automated stock-trading bot. It analyzes the twitter feed of President Donald Trump, then trades stocks with real money. Our money. You can follow our bot on twitter, @BOTUS.
Apr 07, 2017
#531: The Tough, The Sweet, The Nosy
The tricks and mind games tax collectors use to get people to pay up.
Apr 05, 2017
#762: The Fine Print
On today's show: Snuggies, printer toner, and a banking road trip. Three stories about what happens when you actually read the fine print.
Mar 31, 2017
#650: The Business Genius Behind Get Out
Jason Blum makes a lot of movies and makes them cheap. So why are so many turning into blockbusters?
Mar 29, 2017
#761: The Bank War
A populist president versus the most powerful banker in America.
Mar 25, 2017
#760: Tax Hero
One professor had a way to make filing taxes easy and painless. It worked. People loved it. But then a big tax lobby heard about it...
Mar 23, 2017
#759: What's It Worth To You?
Three short stories about putting a price on something hard to value precisely. We go from $4.66 under a pillow all the way up to $1 trillion across every inch of highway in America.
Mar 17, 2017
#522: The Invention Of 'The Economy'
A hundred years ago, nobody talked about "the economy." That's because easy ways to measure and talk about it hadn't been invented. On today's show: how we started boiling nations down to a number.
Mar 15, 2017
#758: Can Trump Take The Money?
The Constitution contains a paragraph known as the Emoluments Clause. It's 49 words meant to prevent foreign influence on US officials. How does it apply to a president with a global business empire?
Mar 11, 2017
#596: Hacking The iPhone For Fun, Profit, And Maybe Espionage
Wikileaks released documents listing the hacks the CIA uses to spy on people. So we revisit our story on hackers for hire: people hunting for flaws in your phone to sell to people, or even the CIA.
Mar 09, 2017
#757: Strong Feelings About Dodd-Frank
President Trump does not like Dodd-Frank, the 2010 law that transformed banking regulation. On today's show, we ask: What are the key parts of the law? And how are they likely to change?
Mar 04, 2017
#513: Dear Economist, I Need A Date
Here at Planet Money, we often wonder: how useful is economics in our everyday lives? Could the principles of economics be applied to the most intimate of human experiences, like, say, love?
Mar 01, 2017
#756: The Bees Go To California
Early every year, 30 billion bees make their way across the country to California's Central Valley. Here's why.
Feb 25, 2017
#654: When The Boats Arrive
In the span of a few months in 1980, more than 100,000 Cuban immigrants arrived in Miami. So what happened to Florida's economy with all these new people coming in? And what can we learn from it?
Feb 22, 2017
#755: The Phone At The End Of The World
A charismatic populist president wanted to boost manufacturing and create jobs. She told companies, 'if you want to sell your stuff here, you have to build it here.' This is what happened.
Feb 18, 2017
#754: I'm So Happy For You!
Here at Planet Money, our favorite stories are the ones we wish we'd done ourselves. On the show, we call out rivals and colleagues who did what we try to do better than we could have done it.
Feb 14, 2017
#753: Blockchain Gang
Charlie Shrem went to prison. While he was there, he thought up a better way to move money behind bars. Now he's out and trying to sell his idea to international investors.
Feb 11, 2017
#436: If Economists Controlled The Borders
What would the perfect immigration system look like? We ask three economists and get three very different answers. (None of which include building a wall.)
Feb 08, 2017
#752: Eagles vs. Chickens
Picture an organic farm, with thousands of free-range chickens roaming wide-open land. Now picture it from above, from the vantage of a soaring bald eagle. It's an all-you-can-eat buffet.
Feb 04, 2017
#751: The Thing About That Border Tax
Over the next few months, we're going to explain President Trump's economic plans. Today: a totally new idea for corporate taxes. What's the plan, what's the theory behind it, and does it work?
Feb 02, 2017
#750: Retraining Day
When an American loses his/her job to trade, there is program to help. It's been around for decades. It makes a lot of sense. It is a generous program. And almost nobody's heard of it. But why?
Jan 28, 2017
#632: The Chicken Tax
President Trump talks about putting tariffs on foreign cars. But there are already tariffs on auto imports and one got there because of chickens in Germany. This is how trade barriers tend to spread.
Jan 25, 2017
#749: Professor Blackjack
Ed Thorp started his career teaching math at MIT. Then he slid sideways into blackjack, changed the game forever, and set his sights on Wall Street investing. He changed that forever too.
Jan 20, 2017
#748: Undoing Obama
Congress writes laws, but the president makes the rules that put the laws in action. President Obama's staff has been scrambling to lock in rules before Trump takes the helm. But will they stick?
Jan 19, 2017
#747: The Man Who Sued Iran
When Steve Flatow's daughter was killed in a terror attack, he wanted someone to pay. His target was the Iranian government. His quest would pit him against both Iran and the White House.
Jan 13, 2017
#577: The Kansas Experiment
A Republican governor lives the dream. He cuts taxes dramatically in his state and he promises good times ahead. But the good times do not come.
Jan 12, 2017
#746: Wall Street Goes To Vegas
Wall Street traders and Las Vegas gamblers have a lot in common. But when a Wall Street firm set up shop taking Vegas bets, both sides got a surprise.
Jan 06, 2017
#443: Don't Believe The Hype
People are talking about how the Dow Jones Industrial Average is about to hit a new record: Twenty thousand. We have a pretty strong opinion about the Dow. We think you should ignore it.
Jan 05, 2017
#745: The Rest Of The Story, 2016 Edition
It's time for an annual Planet Money tradition--we revisit some of our favorite stories from the past year, and see what's changed since we turned off our mics.
Dec 30, 2016