Sonari Glinton

Sonari Glinton is a NPR Business Desk reporter based at our NPR West bureau. He covers the auto industry, consumer goods and consumer behavior, as well as marketing and advertising.

In this position, which he has held since late 2010, Glinton has tackled big stories including GM's road back to profitability and Toyota's continuing struggles. Glinton has traveled throughout the Midwest covering important stories such as the tornado in Joplin, Missouri, and the 2012 presidential race. He has also covered the U.S. Senate and House for NPR.

Glinton came to NPR in August 2007 and worked as a producer for All Things Considered. During that time he produced interviews with everyone from UN Ambassador Susan Rice to Joan Rivers. The highlight for Glinton came when he produced Robert Siegel's 50 Great Voices piece on Nat King Cole.

Glinton began his public radio career as an intern at member station WBEZ in Chicago. He went on to produce and report for WBEZ. While in Chicago he focused on juvenile justice and the Cook County Board of Commissioners. Prior to journalism Glinton had a career in finance.

Glinton attended Boston University.

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3:24am

Wed November 27, 2013
Business

How Shopping Malls Are Adapting In An Online World

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 11:49 am

Traditional shopping malls took a big hit after the economic collapse. Problems at big retailers Sears and J.C. Penney — two of the biggest mall tenants — could signal even more troubles.

But malls are trying to adapt. As online shopping grows, things are getting more and more competitive out in the real world of brick-and-mortar retail.

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5:01pm

Fri November 22, 2013
All Tech Considered

To Test-Drive A Concept Car, Fire Up The PlayStation

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 7:21 pm

Mercedes-Benz introduced its AMG Vision Gran Turismo concept vehicle at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week. This is just a model of the car; the fully functioning version is virtual.
Jae C. Hong AP

Drifting is one of those crazy things you should only do in a video game, but I got to experience it in real life at Willow Springs racetrack in the California desert with race car driver and expert drifter Dai Yoshihara.

Drifting, Yoshihara explains, is "a controlled slide through a series of corners at very high speed."

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4:57pm

Thu November 14, 2013
All Tech Considered

For Ridesharing Apps Like Lyft, Commerce Is A Community

Originally published on Thu November 14, 2013 7:34 pm

A Lyft driver in San Francisco drops off a passenger as a taxi passes by. The smartphone app lets city dwellers hitch rides from strangers.
Jeff Chiu AP

This week on-air and online, the tech team is exploring the sharing economy. You'll find the stories on this blog and aggregated at this link, and we would love to hear your questions about the topic. Just email, leave a comment or tweet.

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6:01pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Shots - Health News

For The Young And Healthy, Health Insurance Is A Hard Sell

Students Amanda McComas, Rose Marie Chute and Sari Schwartz are approached in October at Santa Monica City College in California about signing up for insurance with the Affordable Care Act.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Getting young, healthy people to sign up for health insurance is seen as critical to the success of the Affordable Care Act. It's precisely those people who will help offset the cost of the older, sicker ones.

But while cheap health insurance and subsidies based on income are intended to make the program appealing to the young, what if they haven't even heard of the health care law? Or don't want to buy even an inexpensive policy?

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5:06pm

Sun October 6, 2013
Business

Tesla Slips From Pedestal That May Have Been Too High

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 9:52 am

It's been a rough week for Tesla, but extra scrutiny is expected for the new car on the block, says Jake Fisher of Consumer Reports.
Jeff Chiu AP

Over the last year of so, Tesla motors has received some really good press. But this past week, it's been knocked off its pedestal.

"We're a country that likes to put things up on pedestals and then tear them down from pedestals. We do that with people, I think we do that with things," says Jack Nerad, an analyst with Kelley Blue Book.

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4:40am

Fri September 20, 2013
Business

Why Companies And CEOs Rarely Admit To Wrongdoing

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 11:56 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

JPMorgan Chase will have to pay more than $900 million in fines for the way it handled the London Whale trading scandal. Last year, the company revealed that its traders in London had lost $6 billion, and then concealed the losses from executives.

While large fines aren't unusual, it is unusual that federal regulators forced the bank to admit to wrongdoing. But this is exactly what happened. NPR's Sonari Glinton has more.

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3:30am

Thu August 29, 2013
All Tech Considered

To Attract Millennials, Automakers Look To Smartphones

Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 3:47 pm

Audi's night vision assistant, an example of how car companies are making cars that are part of drivers' digital lives.
Courtesy of Audi

Part of a series of stories produced in collaboration with Youth Radio on the changing car culture in America.

In an effort to attract young people to cars, automakers have set up shop in Silicon Valley and are looking to the digital world as a way to lure them.

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5:24am

Thu August 15, 2013
Business

Auto Industry's Pent-Up Demand Expected To Ease Slowly

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

If economists looking at the housing sector are generally optimistic, those who follow the auto industry are practically brimming with glee. Right now, the average age of cars on the road is the oldest ever recorded, at 11-and-a-half years, which means at some time, people will have to buy newer ones. As NPR's Sonari Glinton reports, that time may be now.

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3:03am

Fri August 9, 2013
Business

The Changing Story Of Teens And Cars

Originally published on Mon August 19, 2013 5:29 pm

To teens today, cars aren't important in the same way they were in American Graffiti, the 1973 film directed by George Lucas.
Lucasfilm/Coppola Co/Universal

This is the first of a series of stories produced in collaboration with Youth Radio on the changing car culture in America.

When you're a teenager, there are many things you desperately want to find: friends, fun, a future, freedom.

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5:02am

Tue August 6, 2013
Business

GM Looks To China To Boost Car Sales

Originally published on Tue August 6, 2013 6:06 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

General Motors is selling a lot of cars in China. The company set a sales record there in July.

NPR's Sonari Glinton reports China is in the front line in the battle for automotive global dominance.

SONARI GLINTON, BYLINE: In China this year, forecasters predict nearly 20 million cars will be sold. In the U.S., the bet is we'll sell about 15 and a half million.

Mike Wall is with IHS Automotive.

MILE WALL: Yeah, you really can't overstate the importance of China in the overall global automotive landscape.

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1:39pm

Sat August 3, 2013
Code Switch

Jobless Rate Falls For Blacks, But It's Not Good News Yet

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 1:46 pm

Employment Specialist Louis Holliday, right, helps an applicant file for unemployment at a Georgia Department of Labor career center last month in Atlanta. The jobless rate for African-Americans fell from 13.7 to 12.6 percent in July, but that's still twice the rate for whites.
David Goldman AP

The labor market continues its recovery; the economy added 162,000 jobs in July and pushed the unemployment rate to a 4.5-year low. After a string of bad news, things seem to be to turning around for African-American workers, too.

"The operative word is growth," says Bill Rodgers, an economist at Rutgers University.

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4:00am

Wed July 31, 2013
Business

Ford Taking America's Best-Selling Truck All 'Natural'

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 6:59 am

A version of Ford's flagship F-150 pickup truck that runs on natural gas.
Courtesy of Ford Motor Company

The reigning king in the truck world is the Ford F-150, and it's been that way for a couple of decades. But staying on top is getting harder.

With new, tougher fuel standards looming there is a lot of emphasis on efficiency and innovation. On Wednesday, Ford is announcing its flagship truck is taking a step into the alternative fuel world with a vehicle that can run on natural gas.

When you look at their bottom lines and their advertising you realize that the Detroit Three make cars, but they're really truck companies, especially Ford.

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5:40am

Sun July 28, 2013
News

Reinvigorating A Detroit Neighborhood, Block By Block

Originally published on Sun July 28, 2013 12:31 pm

Woodward Avenue runs through Midtown, a Detroit neighborhood that is reviving in the midst of the larger city's decline. In the background is downtown Detroit.
Carlos Osorio AP

The debt-laden city of Detroit has been an incubator for new strategies in urban revitalization, including a downtown People Mover, casinos, urban farms, artist colonies and large scale down-sizing.

In the wake of the city's bankruptcy, many in the community are thinking small.

Just outside of downtown Detroit is a neighborhood called Midtown. Like many hip, urban neighborhoods, it's got hipsters on fixed geared bikes, yoga studios, boutiques for dogs.

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6:01pm

Thu July 25, 2013
Business

U.S. Carmakers Are Riding High, But Detroit May Not Feel It

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 7:19 pm

Jeff Caldwell, a chassis assembly line supervisor, checks a vehicle on the assembly line at the Chrysler Jefferson North Assembly plant in Detroit on May 8.
Paul Sancya AP

The news out of Detroit has been grim of late, but there are some bright spots coming from one corner of the Motor City. On Thursday, General Motors posted its 14th straight profitable quarter since emerging from bankruptcy. Ford announced its 16th consecutive profitable quarter Wednesday, and Chrysler is expected to offer good news soon as well.

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3:38am

Tue July 9, 2013
Monkey See

Pedal Power To Horsepower: Toys Point Toward Future Of Cars

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 11:46 am

Mark Takahashi is now one of the "car people" at Edmunds.com — but at the age of 2, the future automotive editor, like his co-worker Mike MaGrath, was more of a toy-car person.
Courtesy Mark Takahashi

Morning Edition has reported that the Toyota Camry is the best-selling car in the U.S., and the Ford Focus is the world's best-seller.

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