Yuki Noguchi

Yuki Noguchi is a correspondent on the Business Desk based out of NPR's headquarters in Washington D.C. Since joining NPR in 2008, she's covered business and economic news, and has a special interest in workplace issues — everything from abusive working environments, to the idiosyncratic cubicle culture. In recent years she has covered the housing market meltdown, unemployment during the Great Recession, and covered the aftermath of the tsunami in Japan in 2011. As in her personal life, however, her coverage interests are wide-ranging, and have included things like entomophagy and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Prior to joining NPR, Yuki started her career as a reporter for The Washington Post. She reported on stories mostly about business and technology, and later became an editor.

Yuki grew up with a younger brother speaking her parents' native Japanese at home. She has a degree in history from Yale.

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4:22am

Thu April 23, 2015
U.S.

Some Companies Fight Pay Gap By Eliminating Salary Negotiations

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 10:56 am

Women stage a protest demanding equal pay for women at a 2012 rally in Miami.
J Pat Carter AP

When it comes to negotiating salaries, the research is pretty clear: women are less assertive than men. It's one reason women who start their careers with a narrower pay gap see it widen over time.

Carnegie Mellon economics professor Linda Babcock, who studies the gender pay gap, says men are four times more likely to negotiate their pay. That keeps women at a disadvantage, though they're not always aware of it.

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5:40pm

Mon April 13, 2015
Business

New York Investigates Retailers For Unpredictable Work Schedules

Originally published on Thu April 16, 2015 2:49 pm

Gap is among 13 big retailers that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is investigating for possible violations of "reporting time" laws. Gap says it is establishing "sustainable scheduling practices."
Andrew Burton Getty Images

The unpredictable schedules of retail and fast-food workers is a big issue in workers rights campaigns. Now, the New York attorney general is investigating the way some of the country's biggest retailers handle scheduling.

In New York, if a worker shows up for a shift that he doesn't end up being needed for, the law says he still is due four hours of pay. State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says retailers, especially, rely heavily on systems that require workers to be ready to work a shift — regardless of whether they end up working. It's called on-call work.

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3:20am

Tue April 7, 2015
All Tech Considered

A New Internet Domain: Extortion Or Free Speech?

Originally published on Tue April 7, 2015 3:48 pm

iStockphoto

A rash of new Web domain suffixes has popped up in recent years to supplement .com and .net — terms such as .bargains or .dating.

Several new suffixes seem to invite negative feedback. There are .gripe and .fail. There's even .wtf — a colorful variation on "what the heck." And soon, there will be .sucks.

J. Scott Evans says his objection isn't that it sounds whiny — it's the price. Evans is associate general counsel at Adobe Systems, and for a trademark owner like his to claim Adobe.sucks would cost $2,500 a year. That's more than 100 times the typical fee.

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6:34pm

Wed April 1, 2015
Shots - Health News

Germanwings Crash Highlights Workplace Approaches To Mental Health

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 2:12 pm

When it comes to an employee's mental health status, what does an employer need to know, or have a right to know?
iStockphoto

The horrifying crash last week of the Germanwings flight operated by Lufthansa has put a spotlight on what the airline knew — and what it should, or could have done — about its pilot's mental health.

Lufthansa could face unlimited liability, after the pilot allegedly brought the plane down deliberately. Here in the U.S., employment experts say monitoring employees' mental health status raises a thicket of complicated issues.

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9:34am

Sat March 21, 2015
Business

As Americans Eat Healthier, Processed Foods Starting To Spoil

Originally published on Sun March 22, 2015 2:24 pm

This week Kraft Foods recalled nearly 2.5 million boxes of macaroni and cheese that were potentially contaminated with metal pieces. Kraft and other processed food manufacturers are facing many challenges.
Toby Talbot AP

Kraft Foods is going through a rough patch.

This week, Kraft recalled nearly 2.5 million boxes of macaroni and cheese that were potentially contaminated with metal pieces.

Also, Kraft Singles, a pre-sliced processed cheese product, earned a nutritional seal from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The seal prompted outrage from nutritionists.

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5:52pm

Fri March 6, 2015
U.S.

Part-Time Workers Struggle With Full-Time Juggling Act

Originally published on Fri March 6, 2015 8:05 pm

Note: Seasonally adjusted, in millions, for each February (2007-2015)
NPR Bureau of Labor Statistics

The cold weather did not hamper hiring last month. Employers added nearly 300,000 jobs to payrolls, and the unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent.

Despite another strong report, there is little evidence that all the hiring is putting upward pressures on wages.

And there are more than 6.5 million people working part time who would like to have more hours.

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3:50am

Wed February 25, 2015
All Tech Considered

Recruiting Better Talent With Brain Games And Big Data

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 1:49 pm

With the technology to conduct more nuanced tests, some companies say they can provide more useful detail about how people think in dynamic situations.
Marcus Butt Getty Images/Ikon Images

The job interview hasn't changed much over the years. There are the resumes, the face-to-face meetings, the callbacks — and the agonizing wait, as employers decide based on a hunch about who's best suited for the job.

Some companies are selling the idea that new behavioral science techniques can give employers more insight into hiring.

For most of her life, Frida Polli assumed she'd be an academic. She got her Ph.D, toiled in a research lab and started a post-doctorate program before she realized she'd been wrong.

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3:33am

Tue February 17, 2015
All Tech Considered

You Might Want To Take Another Pass At Your Passwords

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 12:24 pm

They might be hard to remember sometimes, but good passwords may be the best defense against hackers.
iStockphoto

Compromises of private corporate or consumer data are all too common. This month, health insurer Anthem announced its customer data was hacked.

Yet even President Obama last week poked fun at our common line of defense: the lazy password.

"It's just too easy for hackers to figure out usernames and passwords like 'password' or '123457.' Those are some of my previous passwords," he said.

In short, passwords have, in some cases, undermined their own security intent.

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4:37pm

Wed February 4, 2015
Business

Staples Takes Another Shot At Buying Rival Office Depot

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 7:33 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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5:31pm

Fri January 30, 2015
The Salt

Shake Shack Sizzles With IPO As McDonald's Fizzles

Originally published on Fri January 30, 2015 8:40 pm

The founder and chairman of Shake Shack, Danny Meyer, visits the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Shake Shack, the Manhattan-based burger chain, has a cult following, and investors gobbled up shares Friday when it became a publicly traded company.

In its initial public offering, shares were priced at $21, but they jumped to nearly $50 as trading began, and closed the day just under $46.

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4:14am

Thu January 29, 2015
Business

And So We Meet, Again: Why The Workday Is So Filled With Meetings

Originally published on Thu January 29, 2015 8:46 am

PW Illustration Ikon Images/Getty Images

The ouster of Bryan Stockton from his perch as CEO at Mattel this week came as the toymaker's best-known brands like Barbie stagnate and it loses business to Web-based games.

Stockton himself said last year that Mattel lacked an innovative culture and blamed it in part on something specific: bad meetings. That's a common and persistent corporate ailment.

Scott Ryan-Hart is a cartographer for the Ohio Department of Transportation, where a typical meeting can last more than two hours.

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5:14pm

Thu January 15, 2015
Business

Largest Unit Of Gambling Giant Caesars Files For Bankruptcy

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 6:33 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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3:21am

Thu January 15, 2015
Business

Businesses Try To Stave Off Brain Drain As Boomers Retire

Originally published on Mon January 19, 2015 8:02 pm

Dave Tobelmann worked for 33 years at General Mills before retiring five years ago. Not long after, he returned to the company, this time through a staffing firm specializing in retiree placement.
Courtesy of Dave Tobelmann

In the U.S., roughly 10,000 people reach retirement age every day. And though not everyone who turns 62 or 65 retires right away, enough do that some companies are trying to head off the problem.

Dave Tobelmann, who for 33 years developed new products for General Mills, retired five years ago at age 57 — around the same time as a number of other colleagues. "Yeah, I went to a lot of retirement parties," Tobelmann says.

Losing veteran workers is a challenge, even for big companies like General Mills.

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4:38pm

Thu January 1, 2015
Business

More States Raise Minimum Wage, But Debate Continues

Originally published on Thu January 1, 2015 10:34 pm

Protesters march in New York City on Dec. 4 to demand an increase in the minimum wage to $15 per hour. New York state's minimum wage rose to $8.75 on Wednesday.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

The minimum wage went up in 20 states Thursday, a day after the state of New York boosted its minimum, which means a majority of states now have a minimum wage higher than the federal government's, which is set at $7.25. The state with the highest minimum wage is now Washington state, at $9.47 an hour.

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4:49pm

Tue December 30, 2014
Business

Comcast-Time Warner Deal Tops A Year Of Corporate Mergers

Originally published on Tue December 30, 2014 7:05 pm

There were $3 trillion worth of corporate mergers in 2014. Comcast's proposed acquisition of fellow cable company Time Warner was the largest at $45 billion.
Gene J. Puskar AP

This year saw some very large corporate mergers and takeovers. Comcast and Time Warner's proposed deal topped the list.

Globally, there were $3 trillion worth of deals announced this year — the biggest year for mergers and acquisitions since the financial crisis. And the trend is expected to continue next year.

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