finance

Andrew Love / Creative Commons

Are you feeling overburdened by student loan payments or the growing stack of credit card bills on your kitchen table? If you answered "yes" to either of those questions, you're not alone (especially if you're a young American).

Coming up on Thursday's show, personal finance experts will offer tips and tricks for young people looking to get out of debt. We want to hear your stories, comments, and questions, as well - especially if you're in your 20s or 30s.

Saying he was making a "tough decision," Puerto Rican Gov. Alejandro García Padilla announced the island would not make a more than $400 million debt payment due today.

"I've had to choose and I have made a choice," García said in a message to the commonwealth. "I've decided that your basic needs come before anything else."

NPR's Jim Zarroli filed this report for our Newscast unit:

David Ohmer / Creative Commons

For the United States, the 20th century marked a period of vast and unparalleled prosperity thanks -- in large part -- to an economic model known as the “mixed economy.” Under that model, the nation's government and markets operated in tandem, creating a robust coalition from which health, wealth, and well-being not only grew, but flourished. 

During her sophomore year at Southern Connecticut State University, Cinthia Perez and her younger brother dropped out. They decided to work full-time because the family was struggling to pay tuition out-of-pocket.  

Perez said, “It was really hard for my mom, especially. She was like, ‘No, I want you guys to go to college because that would be the main key to help everyone in the family.’ But then we were like, ‘It was either that, or we’re just not going to have any food at home.’”

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

Layoffs are continuing in Connecticut state government, with 166 employees at the Department of Correction receiving pink slips.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR (file photo)

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin wants to close next year’s budget deficit by laying off 40 city employees, demanding millions in union concessions, draining every last dollar from the city’s rainy day fund, and not raising the tax rate. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

A one-time insurance executive who defrauded the city of Hartford, the state and others of over $2 million was sentenced to 78 months in federal prison Wednesday. 

Photo Phiend / Creative Commons

The first round of layoff notices have been given out to state workers as Governor Dannel Malloy works to confront looming deficits.

General Electric plans to donate $50 million over the next five years to Boston and the surrounding area.

U.S. Cities Facing Issues Over Pension Packages

Apr 7, 2016
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Andy Uhler

A task force aimed at preventing Philadelphia from going bankrupt has urged the city’s mayor to figure out how to deal with its almost $6 billion pension deficit. Philadelphia hasn't been or isn't the only region in the country dealing with this issue, though. 

Detroit was the poster child of cities running out of money. In 2013, the city filed for bankruptcy after accumulating $18 billion of debt. The pension program was said to account for a sixth of that total.

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David Brancaccio

If you want to know where the economy’s going, who would you want sit next to on a plane? Fed chair Janet Yellen is a good answer. So is Ray Dalio, a legendarily successful investor. Dalio is founder and CEO of Bridgewater Associates, the largest hedge fund manager in the world. Dalio bases his investment decisions less on abstract financial data, and more on his reading of the macro economy.

Puerto Rico's governor has signed a bill that puts the island's debt payments on hold until January 2017. Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla says the island's first priority is covering payments for essential services.

Puerto Rico acted this week following reports that a key financial institution, the Government Development Bank, is nearly insolvent. A group of hedge funds went to court to block public agencies from withdrawing funds from the bank. Within hours, the Legislature moved to pass the debt moratorium by approving the measure.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

One law firm, 11.5 million files.

The massive trove of emails, contracts and other papers from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca is being called the largest document leak in history.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

Icelandic Prime Minister Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson said Tuesday that he will step aside and another party official will take over for a while. The move comes days after a massive data leak known as the Panama Papers linked him to secret offshore bank accounts.

Following news that Gunnlaugsson had resigned, a spokesperson released a statement clarifying the leader's decision:

In 2014, Sergei Roldugin told the New York Times, "I don't have millions."

Associates of President Vladimir Putin of Russia have channeled as much as $2 billion through offshore accounts, banks and shadow companies, according to a massive leak of documents from a Panamanian law firm.

More than 11 million documents, dubbed the Panama Papers, show how dozens of rich and powerful people around the world have used offshore and secret accounts to dodge taxes and sanctions and launder money.

General Electric wants to be removed from the federal government's list of too-big-to-fail financial institutions, arguing that it's no longer a major player in the financial services industry.

Simon Cunningham / Creative Commons

This campaign season has seen the attack on the concept of government in full swing, with Republican candidates pledging to cut taxes and downsize federal agencies.

Scott Liddell / Creative Commons

In 2013, over 1,000 gold coins were found by a couple walking their dog on their property in Sierra Nevada, California. A rainstorm exposed the rusted can holding the gold coins. They soon found additional rusted cans, all holding gold coins dating from 1847 to 1894. The face value of the coins was just under $28,000. Today's market value is about $10 million.

David Ohmer / Creative Commons

For the United States, the 20th century marked a period of vast and unparalleled prosperity thanks -- in large part -- to an economic model known as the “mixed economy.” Under that model, the nation's government and markets operated in tandem, creating a robust coalition from which health, wealth, and well-being not only grew, but flourished. 

WNPR - Connecticut Public Radio / Creative Commons

State employee layoffs might not initially produce as much budget savings as Governor Dannel Malloy and legislative leaders would like as they try to balance Connecticut's budget.

Sage Ross / Wikimedia Commons

The leader of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system is recommending a tuition increase at all of its 17 campuses. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The federal Securities and Exchange Commission sent another subpoena to the city of Hartford in January, a sign that its investigation into the city and its treasurer is continuing. 

Twitter @GoYardGoats

Hartford officials are again asking legislators to pass a state law to help to pay for its new baseball stadium.

AMagill, Creative Commons

Connecticut Working Families is calling on the governor and the legislature to raise more revenue to solve the state’s budget crisis, instead of focusing on cuts in services.

We all know that American college education isn't cheap. But it turns out that it's even less cheap if you look at the numbers more closely.

That's what the Wisconsin HOPE Lab did. The lab, part of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, conducted four studies to figure out the true price of college.

To get a sense of student realities, researchers interviewed students on college campuses across the state of Wisconsin. But they also examined 6,604 colleges nationally and compared their costs with regional cost-of-living data from the government.

Senado Federal / Flickr Creative Commons

It goes by many names: the sharing economy, the collaborative economy, the peer economy, just to name a few. Whatever you want to call it, one thing's for sure: this new way of doing business -- where idle assets equal big profits, and the hard-earned currency of trust comes through user reviews -- is changing the economic landscape of our country.

The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a blow Tuesday to nascent efforts to track the quality and cost of health care, ruling that a 1974 law precludes states from requiring that every health care claim involving their residents be submitted to a massive database.

The arguments were arcane, but the effect is clear: We're a long way off from having a true picture of the country's health care spending, especially differences in the way hospitals treat patients and doctors practice medicine.

Mike Grauer Jr. / Flickr Creative Commons

Vin Baker was an Olympic basketball player and four-time NBA All Star. The journey from University of Hartford to professional basketball got him rich quick, but it was a lifestyle he couldn't keep up with.

Baker's struggle with alcoholism is well-documented, as is the fact he blew through $100 million. He lost his home and restaurant.

Becky Wetherington via Flickr.com / Creative Commons

Honeywell said it has dropped its pursuit of United Technologies. The announcement comes just days after it made its merger bid public. 

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