250 episodes

Each weekday, Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal and Kimberly Adams make today make sense. Along with our supersmart listeners, we break down happenings in tech, the economy and culture. Every Tuesday we bring on a guest to dive deeper into one important topic. Because none of us is as smart as all of us.

Make Me Smart Marketplace

    • Business
    • 4.6 • 4.9K Ratings

Each weekday, Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal and Kimberly Adams make today make sense. Along with our supersmart listeners, we break down happenings in tech, the economy and culture. Every Tuesday we bring on a guest to dive deeper into one important topic. Because none of us is as smart as all of us.

    The complicated economics of electric vehicles

    The complicated economics of electric vehicles

    After a little summer hiatus, we’re back and digging into the Inflation Reduction Act — specifically the part that would offer thousands of dollars in tax credits to electric car buyers. But will the incentives actually make EVs more affordable and lead to mass adoption that leads to curbing climate-warming emissions? Kimberly and guest host Meghan McCarty Carino get into it. Plus, a major investigation into the real origins of the government’s family separation policy. Then, it’s a bird … it’s a plane … it’s a slice of salami?



    Here’s everything we talked about today:




    What the proposed climate bill means for EV buyers from Axios
    “Electric Cars Are Too Costly for Many, Even With Aid in Climate Bill” from The New York Times
    “The climate bill could short-circuit EV tax credits, making qualifying for them nearly impossible” from The Conversation
    The secret history of family separation from The Atlantic
    “Earth broke the record for the shortest day since atomic clocks were invented” from CNN
    “James Webb Spots the Farthest Galaxy Humans Have Ever Seen, Near the Dawn of Time” from Vice



    Let us know what’s on your mind. Our email is makemesmart@marketplace.org. You can also leave a voice message at 508-U-B-SMART.

    • 18 min
    From “Million Bazillion”: What is cryptocurrency?

    From “Million Bazillion”: What is cryptocurrency?

    “Make Me Smart” is on summer break this week, but we’re thrilled to share an episode from our sister show “Million Bazillion,” which answers questions kids have about money.



    Today’s episode tackles a question many of our grown-up listeners have too: what is cryptocurrency? Join “Million Bazillion” hosts Ryan Perez and Bridget Bodnar as they dive into the complicated world of crypto (you’ll probably recognize some familiar Marketplace folks too).



    We’ll be back in your feeds on Monday, Aug. 8. Until then, keep sending your thoughts, comments and questions to makemesmart@marketplace.org or leave us a voice message at 508-827-6278, or 508-U-B-SMART.

    • 30 min
    Enjoy the summer, because the Fed drops the hammer this fall

    Enjoy the summer, because the Fed drops the hammer this fall

    The largest U.S. oil companies reported record revenue for the second quarter. We’re talking a LOT of money here, folks. Guest host Andy Uhler explains. Plus, why this month’s stock market rally means we might expect the Federal Reserve to “drop the hammer” this fall. And we’ve got a round of Half Full/Half Empty! Our hosts weigh in on robotic dead spiders, the CHIPS Act, Choco Tacos, Beyonce’s new album and office parties!



    Here’s everything we talked about on the show today:




    “Exxon, Chevron post blowout earnings, oil majors bet on buybacks” from Reuters
    “Shock July Stock Rally Was a Monster the Fed May Regret Seeing” from Bloomberg
    “Scientists Turn Dead Spiders Into ‘Necrobotic’ Arachnoborgs” from Futurism
    “The passage of the CHIPS Act could launch another US startup renaissance” from TechCrunch
    “People Are Mourning the End of the Choco Taco, a Mount Rushmore Ice Cream Treat” from Sports Illustrated
    “How ‘forced fun’ at the office can hurt our ability to disconnect” from Marketplace



    We’re off all next week, but we’d still love to hear from you! Send your questions, comments or thoughts on the show to us at makemesmart@marketplace.org or leave us a voice message at (508) 827-6278 or (508) U-B-SMART.

    • 19 min
    Berry, berry, quite contrary

    Berry, berry, quite contrary

    Yes, we know, the GDP numbers are in. The United States reported today a 0.9% drop in gross domestic product in the second quarter. We’ll discuss. Also, Chinese officials expect to miss economic growth targets. On today’s show, Kai Ryssdal and guest host Matt Levin discuss the “squishy” situation China could find itself in. Plus, a bold move from the Federal Trade Commission could signal a new path to regulating Big Tech. Then we’ll wrap up the show with a “berry” delicious Make Me Smile from Down Under!



    Here’s everything we talked about on the show today:




    “Chinese Leaders Indicate Country Is Likely to Miss Economic Growth Targets” from The Wall Street Journal
    “The Strong Dollar Is Wreaking Havoc Globally — And It’s Just Getting Started” from Bloomberg
    “F.T.C. Sues to Block Meta’s Virtual Reality Deal as It Confronts Big Tech” from The New York Times
    “Don’t panic about the Chinese space junk crash this weekend” from Space.com
    “Australia Is Begging People to Eat More Avocado Toast” from Motherboard



    Join us tomorrow for Economics on Tap! We’ll be livestreaming on YouTube starting at 6:30 p.m. Easter time, 3:30 p.m. Pacific time.

    • 17 min
    As oil prices drop, consider this!

    As oil prices drop, consider this!

    Today Kai Ryssdal and guest host Samantha Fields answer questions from listeners about negative GDP growth and how the global helium shortage will affect the balloon market. Plus, how to *not* handle an inflation crisis, carnival revenue sharing and some big thoughts on whether the decreasing cost of oil is good news or bad news.



    Here’s everything we talked about on the show today:




    This definition of negative growth from Investopedia
    This graph from the WorldBank showing U.S. GDP since the 1960s
    “With helium in short supply, scientists are worried” from Marketplace
    “The ongoing problems of the helium shortage” from Peak Scientific
    “Helium shortage grounds weather balloons in Denver” from 9News
    “5 things to know about the inflation crisis during the ’70s” from Marketplace
    “Gerald Ford responded to an inflation crisis with a voluntary public campaign. It was a disaster.” from The Washington Post



    Got a question you’d like us to answer? Email us at makemesmart@marketplace.org or leave us a voice message at (508) 827-6278 or (508) U-B-SMART.

    • 13 min
    The Fed could use an assist

    The Fed could use an assist

    The Federal Reserve could put a quick end to inflation on its own, economist Claudia Sahm says, but be careful what you wish for. Remember that thing we were talking about yesterday? Sahm, formerly of the Fed and the White House, now the founder of Sahm Consulting, says the central bank can only do so much to tame prices without throwing the economy into recession. For this week’s deep dive, she tells us some ways Congress can pitch in.



    Here’s everything we talked about on the show today:




    “Don’t make the Fed go it alone on inflation” from Stay-At-Home Macro
    “Will the Fed Cause a Recession? Not Necessarily, if Biden’s White House Acts” from Barron’s
    “The Agony of an Early Case of Monkeypox” from The New Yorker
    “W.H.O. Declares Monkeypox Spread a Global Health Emergency” from The New York Times
    “China Targeted Fed to Build Informant Network, Access Data, a Probe Says” from The Wall Street Journal



    Have any thoughts on the show? Something interesting to share, or perhaps an answer to the Make Me Smart question? Email us at makemesmart@marketplace.org or leave us a voice message at (508) 827-6278 or (508) U-B-SMART.

    • 26 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
4.9K Ratings

4.9K Ratings

DeeDee146 ,

Very informative

I gain valuable insight into what’s happening in the world every day. Thank you!

Jessie from Seattle ,

Kai and Kimberly: great chemistry!

I was worried that when Molly left the pod would never be the same, and it’s not - it’s a new and wonderful kind of fabulous with Kimberly co hosting. Thank you Kimberly and Kai for making me smart and brightening my days!

MelissaMarie7 ,

Depressing

Need to bring the positivity up several notches for the sake of everyone’s well being. I used to enjoy listening to this podcast because it is informative and the hosts are great, but you can hear the negative focus wearing on them – especially since they went daily at the beginning of the pandemic. Kimberly is a fine replacement for Molly, but I feel down after listening. The “make me smile” is even sounding cynical. Genuinely balance out the bad and bring us up – inject some humor or focus on information rather than Debbie Downer commentary and sighs.

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