Stories in the ‘Business’ category …

Obama to share mortgage payment plan

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

(Phoenix, AZ) President Obama is in Phoenix today speaking to homeowners about his plan to help those who are struggling reduce their mortgage payments. But some skeptics worry about what the plan will cost. Rene Gutel reports. Listen here.

This story aired on Marketplace.

Home Loan Program Benefits Rural Families

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

(Buckeye, AZ) Even though the country is in the midst of a financial crisis, it’s still possible to buy a house with no money down. A relatively small but growing number of Americans are turning to an obscure home loan program backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Listen here.

This story aired on NPR’s Morning Edition.

Amid Financial Woes, Business Schools Adapt

Friday, October 10th, 2008

(Glendale, AZ) Teachers and professors across the nation are using the financial crisis as a lesson for their students. A class on global economics in the MBA program at Thunderbird School of Global Management in Phoenix examines the downturn. Listen here.

This story aired on NPR’s All Things Considered.

Politics on the Spot: Truck Stop

Saturday, September 20th, 2008

(Phoenix, AZ) With the presidential election just over six weeks away, we’re launching a new series on Weekend America called “Politics on the Spot.” Over the next six weekends, we want to take you to places where important issues are at play every day – and to hear how those might be handled differently going forward depending on who’s our next president. We’re calling the series “Politics on the Spot.” Rene Gutel kicks off the series at a truck stop on the road west from Phoenix to Los Angeles. Listen here.

This story was produced for Weekend America.

Hot Jobs: Air Conditioner Repairman

Friday, August 15th, 2008

(Phoenix, AZ) When it gets really hot out and your air conditioner conks out, Russ Wichterman could be your knight in shining armor. Wichterman tells us what it’s like to be an air conditioning repairman. Listen Here.

This story aired on KJZZ and Marketplace.

France Sniffing Out Product Price-fixing

Wednesday, February 27th, 2008

(Marseille, France) In Europe, nine makers of consumer products are suspected of colluding to keep prices high. The companies could face billions of euros in fines if France’s Competition Council finds them guilty. Rene Gutel reports. Listen here.

This story was reported for the Marketplace Morning Report

Wife Works Christmas Consumerism

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

tree.jpgReporter Rene Gutel from member station KJZZ in Phoenix buys her husband a wireless portable reading device for Christmas for $400. Amazon later sells out of the “in” gift; no more will be available before Christmas. Gutel finds she can sell the hard-to-find item on eBay for a $600 profit.The opportunity puts her in an ethical tailspin. She decides whether to surprise her husband with the perfect gift — or just take the cash.
Listen Here.

This story was reported for the alt.NPR podcast, B-Side Radio. It later aired on KJZZ and NPR’s Day to Day.

Pet Owners Pay for Lavish Funerals

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

(Phoenix, AZ) Americans are spending record amounts of money on their pets including the latest trend: a full-service funeral. The first pet-only funeral home opened three years ago. But traditional funeral homes are branching out to offer services for dogs, cats, horses and more. Rene Gutel reports from member station KJZZ. Listen here.

This story was reported for KJZZ and NPR’s Morning Edition.

PetSmart Criticized for Testing Rabbit Sales

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007

bunny.jpgRabbit owners are incensed that PetSmart, the Phoenix-based pet care conglomerate, has decided to break with past policies and offer bred bunnies for sale in its stores. It has heretofore been considered the “good guy” by animal rights groups because it encouraged customers to adopt orphaned bunnies rather than buy new ones. But now the company is responding to customers’ desires for bred bunnies and launching test sales in Phoenix.

Listen here.

This story was reported for KJZZ and All Things Considered.

Luxury Homes Selling Despite Real Estate Slump

Tuesday, May 29th, 2007

Despite the nationwide slump in real estate sales, multimillion-dollar luxury homes are still selling well, at least in some markets. Listen here!

This story was reported for KJZZ and NPR’s Day to Day.