Marilyn Geewax

Marilyn Geewax is a senior editor, assigning and editing business radio stories. She also serves as the national economics correspondent for the NPR web site, and regularly discusses economic issues on Tell Me More and Here & Now.

Her work contributed to NPR's 2011 Edward R. Murrow Award for hard news for "The Foreclosure Nightmare." Geewax also worked on the foreclosure-crisis coverage that was recognized with a 2009 Heywood Broun Award.

Before to joining NPR in 2008, Geewax served as the national economics correspondent for Cox Newspapers' Washington Bureau. Before that, she worked at Cox's flagship paper, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, first as a business reporter and then as a columnist and editorial board member. She got her start as a reporter for the Akron Beacon Journal.

Over the years, she has filed business news stories from China, Japan, South Africa and Europe.

Geewax was a 1994-95 Nieman Fellow at Harvard, where she studied economics and international relations. She earned a master's degree at Georgetown University, focusing on international economic affairs, and has a bachelor's degree in journalism from The Ohio State University.

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3:01pm

Wed January 29, 2014
Business

Need A Retirement Starter Kit? This Might Help

Originally published on Mon February 3, 2014 12:56 pm

With new accounts called myRAs, the government would protect workers' savings from losses.
iStockphoto

Financial planners all say: The sooner you start saving, the better off you'll be in retirement.

But that advice often goes unheeded by young workers focused on paying down student debt and car loans. And even for those who can afford to set aside a little cash, investing can seem complicated and risky.

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9:13am

Tue January 21, 2014
Economy

Workers May Be Missing, Or Maybe Just Retiring

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 10:52 am

Is the economy strengthening, or is the jobless rate falling only because so many people are dropping out of the workforce?
iStockphoto

For more than four years, the unemployment rate has been sliding down — from a 10 percent peak to today's 6.7 percent.

But does that reflect a fast-strengthening economy? Or is the rate falling only because so many people are dropping out of the workforce?

In coming weeks, members of Congress and the Federal Reserve Board will be making big policy decisions based upon their best understanding of those unsettled questions.

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3:27pm

Wed January 15, 2014
The Two-Way

IMF's Lagarde: Any U.S. Budget Deal Is Better Than None

Christine Lagarde, who heads the International Monetary Fund, offered some positive comments about Congress on Wednesday.

Her assessment was a shade better than "faint praise," but something less than "Attaboy!"

Speaking at the National Press Club, Lagarde said she was pleased to see U.S. lawmakers have been moving forward "in a more orderly fashion" as they work on spending legislation.

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1:07pm

Fri January 10, 2014
Business

What's Behind The Drop In Unemployment

Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 1:20 pm

Shoppers make a purchase at an outlet mall in Los Angeles. Employers added 55,000 jobs in the retail sector in December.
Gus Ruelas Reuters/Landov

Whether you had a job or were looking for one, December was a gloomy month.

The Labor Department said Friday that for December, employers added only 74,000 jobs — about a third as many as most economists had been predicting. That was the lowest level of job creation in three years — not exactly the news that 10.4 million job seekers wanted to hear.

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7:29am

Wed January 1, 2014
Business

Most Economists Say Happy New Year — Really

Philips Lighting North America CEO and President Bruno Biasiotta rings the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday.
Seth Wenig AP

As the new year begins, most economists' annual forecasts are brimming with good cheer.

"The economic news remains broadly encouraging," the Goldman Sachs forecasters write in their 2014 outlook.

And the brighter prospects are not limited to this country. "The global economy is likely to emerge in 2014 with modest growth of 3.3 percent compared with 2.5 percent this year," according to Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at the forecasting firm IHS Global Insight.

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2:21pm

Fri December 27, 2013
Business

On-The-Job Deaths Spiking As Oil Drilling Quickly Expands

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 5:15 pm

Energy companies are adding workers, but fatal accidents are on the rise, too.
iStockphoto

Blue-collar workers, hit hard by automation and factory offshoring, have been struggling to find high-paying jobs.

One industry does offer opportunity: As baby boomers retire and drilling increases, oil and gas companies are hiring. They added 23 percent more workers between 2009 and 2012.

But the hiring spree has come with a terrible price: Last year, 138 workers were killed on the job — an increase of more than 100 percent since 2009.

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5:05am

Fri December 20, 2013
Business

Shop On The Web Or In The Store; Each Has Risks

Originally published on Fri December 20, 2013 6:37 am

A customer prepares to sign a credit card slip Thursday at a Target store in Miami. The giant retailer says 40 million payment cards nationwide may have been compromised by data theft.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Back in ye olden days — say, a decade ago — many holiday shoppers worried about using credit cards to buy gifts online. They feared their information would end up in the hands of computer hackers.

Turns out, walking into a store and swiping a credit card can be plenty risky, too.

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9:05am

Thu December 19, 2013
Economy

The Washington Two-Step: Dancing Back To Normal

Originally published on Thu December 19, 2013 11:24 am

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray, D-Wash., and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., unveil a budget deal Dec. 10 in Washington.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters/Landov

Time and again, business leaders say the one thing they want out of Washington is more certainty.

But rarely do they get their wish.

In recent years, business owners have found themselves wondering whether their government would default on its debts, shut down national parks, change tax rules, cancel supplier contracts, confirm key leaders at federal agencies or hike interest rates.

Finally on Wednesday, they saw policymakers take two big steps toward a more certain future.

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3:08pm

Mon December 16, 2013
The Two-Way

General Motors CEO: In The Bailout, Fair Is Fair

General Motors Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson speaks at the National Press Club on Monday in Washington, D.C.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Retiring General Motors CEO Dan Akerson made a case Monday for how losing should feel like winning — at least for U.S. taxpayers who lost more than $10 billion in a GM bailout.

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2:04pm

Tue December 10, 2013
Business

GM Gives A Woman The Keys To Drive Its Future

Originally published on Tue December 10, 2013 3:29 pm

Mary Barra speaks at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit earlier this year. General Motors has picked her to lead the company.
Rebecca Cook Reuters/Landov

She's not the first woman to head a global corporation.

Ginni Rometty runs IBM, and Indra Nooyi heads PepsiCo. Don't forget Ursula Burns at Xerox and Meg Whitman at Hewlett-Packard. There's Marissa Mayer at Yahoo.

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3:35am

Sun December 8, 2013
Economy

Economists Toast 20 Years Of NAFTA; Critics Sit Out The Party

A truck bearing Mexican and U.S. flags approaches the border crossing into the U.S., in Laredo, Texas.
Reuters /Landov

Twenty years ago, millions of Americans were cocking their ears — waiting to hear a "giant sucking sound."

They feared Mexico would begin vacuuming up U.S. manufacturing jobs as soon as President Clinton signed the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, on Dec. 8, 1993.

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11:46am

Fri December 6, 2013
Economy

For Workers, A Week Stuffed With Good News

Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 2:40 pm

An auto worker tightens bolts on the wheel of a Focus at a Ford plant in Wayne, Mich. Reports this week showed increases in auto sales and manufacturing jobs.
Mira Oberman AFP/Getty Images

Here's something you haven't heard in years: The U.S. economy had a great week.

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12:09pm

Sun November 24, 2013
Economy

Many Americans Will Be Giving Thanks For Lower Prices

Originally published on Mon November 25, 2013 11:11 am

Gas prices are down compared with last year, but slumping consumer confidence could dampen Thanksgiving holiday travel.
Julio Cortez AP

When Americans drive to their Thanksgiving gatherings this week, they will have one more blessing to count: lower costs.

Gasoline is cheaper than last year. Turkey prices are down, too. And retailers are joining in, offering big discounts on TVs and other goods.

For people who watch every penny, this Thanksgiving will be a good time for pinching.

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3:16pm

Thu November 14, 2013
The Kennedy Assassination, 50 Years Later

JFK's Lasting Economic Legacy: Lower Tax Rates

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 2:00 pm

As the young U.S. senator takes the oath to become president, he sets out to fix an economy struggling with rising unemployment, slumping profits and depressed stock prices.

He knows the deep recession could prevent him from advancing his broader domestic and diplomatic agenda. Yes — all true for President Obama.

But that's what John F. Kennedy faced as well. On his frosty Inauguration Day in January 1961, Kennedy had to start fulfilling his campaign pledge to "get America moving again." Like Obama, he would need to win over a deeply skeptical business community.

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3:16pm

Tue November 12, 2013
Business

Airline Antitrust Deal Seen Boosting Competition At Airports

Originally published on Wed November 13, 2013 2:21 pm

An American Airlines jet passes the Washington Monument as it lands at Ronald Reagan National Airport. That's one of seven airports where American and US Airways must now make room for low-cost competitors under a settlement with the Justice Department.
Mark Lennihan AP

From the start, airline analysts had been predicting that an antitrust lawsuit would not stop the $11 billion deal to combine US Airways and American Airlines.

They saw the suit, filed in August, as a government negotiating tactic, not a deal-breaker.

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11:06am

Fri November 8, 2013
Business

What Really Got Measured In This Month's Jobs Report?

Originally published on Fri November 8, 2013 12:58 pm

Graphic designer Tom Sadowski, 65, works from home in Sterling, Va., in October. Many experts believe the economy is becoming too complicated for the Bureau of Labor Statistics to measure accurately using current methods.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

In October, private employers did a lot of hiring, but a government shutdown forced hundreds of thousands of workers to stay home.

Those federal furloughs offset 204,000 jobs created last month — enough to push the unemployment rate one tick higher to 7.3 percent, the Labor Department said on Friday.

Or maybe the end of that sentence should read: the Labor Department guessed on Friday.

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3:34pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Business

More Foreign Firms Look To Make It In The USA

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 11:44 am

Acura MDX sport utility vehicles roll off the assembly line at a Honda plant in Lincoln, Ala., in May. Overseas investors have U.S. assets totaling nearly $4 trillion, including auto plants, banks and mines.
Joe Songer AL.com/Landov

When many Americans hear the word "globalization," they think: "jobs going overseas."

And sometimes it does mean just that.

But as globalization knits nations closer together, foreign companies increasingly are creating jobs in the United States, not luring them away. Despite the Great Recession, slow recovery and political dysfunction in Washington, the United States remains a top destination for the world's wealth.

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1:27pm

Wed October 30, 2013
Economy

Why The Fed Decided Not To Change Course

Citing continued signs of weakness, the Federal Reserve said it will keep aiming for low interest rates.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Look around. Do you see much inflation?

Gas prices are down more than 7 percent from last year. Grocery costs haven't budged lately. And — just in time for Halloween — the price of candy is down 2.3 percent from last year, according to the government's consumer price index released Wednesday.

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1:49pm

Tue October 22, 2013
Economy

Job Growth Was Disappointing, But Some See Reasons For Hope

Hans Kahl (left) speaks with prospective employees at a job fair for veterans, in Miami on Tuesday. With job growth still slow, the Federal Reserve may keep trying to stimulate the economy.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

When it finally came out Tuesday, the September jobs report — delayed for 18 days by the government shutdown — showed a labor market moving forward. But the pace was slow enough to prompt many economists to view it as a letdown.

Job growth "is disappointing, given that employment is still down by about 1.8 million from its peak prior to the recession," Gus Faucher, senior economist with PNC Financial Services Group, said in his analysis.

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1:25am

Fri October 18, 2013
Economy

Declining Gas Prices Pump Up A Shaky Economy

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 10:34 am

A motorist fuels up at a service station in Springfield, Ill.
Seth Perlman AP

In recent weeks, economists have been worrying about the negative impact of the now-ended government shutdown and potential debt crisis.

But away from Capitol Hill, the economy has been getting a big boost: Gasoline prices have been declining, week after week. In some parts of the country, a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline is now down to less than $3 a gallon — a price most Americans haven't seen in three years.

And any time the pump price starts dropping, consumer spirits start rising.

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