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The Journal.

The Journal.

The most important stories, explained through the lens of business. A podcast about money, business and power. Hosted by Kate Linebaugh and Ryan Knutson. The Journal is a co-production from Gimlet Media and The Wall Street Journal.


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Simone Biles and the Power of Saying No

Earlier this week, star gymnast Simone Biles pulled out of two Olympic competitions after she experienced a dangerous case of the "twisties." WSJ's Louise Radnofsky explains how one of the Olympics's biggest stars is helping change attitudes towards mental health and physical safety.
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Robinhood's Unconventional IPO

Robinhood built its business around the idea of making it easier than ever for everyday people to invest. Now the company's betting it can "democratize" initial public offerings, too - including its own. WSJ's Peter Rudegeair explains the thinking behind Robinhood's unconventional IPO this week.
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The Fed Chair Helped Save the Economy. Will He Keep His Job?

Jerome Powell has led the U.S. economy through its pandemic-induced crash and turbulent recovery. But with his first term ending soon, WSJ's Nick Timiraos says some in Washington are questioning whether Powell should be reappointed.
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Unrest, Covid and Economic Despair in South Africa

Covid has taken a toll on South Africa. Successive lockdowns have led to deep economic suffering across the country. And when political protests broke out recently, the economic hardship took a violent turn leading to riots and looting. WSJ's Gabriele Steinhauser explains how South Africa could be a warning to other countries.
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Simone Biles Is USA Gymnastics' Biggest Star - And Critic

Superstar gymnast Simone Biles could become the first woman since 1968 to repeat as the gold medalist in the individual all-around competition. But WSJ's Louise Radnofsky says that, for Biles, continuing to compete at the sport's highest level is also about keeping a spotlight on the crimes committed by former team doctor Larry Nassar. As the last self-identified survivor on the team, Biles is still pushing for more answers from USA Gymnastics.
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An Ad Executive's New Challenge: Selling the Vaccine

Last year, PJ Pereira got a big assignment: to help market new Covid-19 vaccines to the public. Pereira explains what he learned trying to convince vaccine-hesitant Americans to get the shot.
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Wall Street CEOs Say Working From Home Isn't Working

Major banks performed well while employees worked remotely. But executives at some banks are bringing their workers back to the office full time. WSJ's David Benoit explains what it could mean for the industry and the rest of corporate America.
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Who's in Charge of Fixing Miami's Aging Condos?

Many of Miami's condo buildings are vulnerable to the same kind of structural issues as Champlain Towers South, which collapsed last month. WSJ's Laura Kusisto explains why it's often untrained volunteer condo boards that are in charge of repairs.
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Bezos' Blue Origin Takes Off

Blue Origin is set to launch founder Jeff Bezos into space tomorrow, about a week after Virgin Galactic sent its own founder to the stars. WSJ's Micah Maidenberg explains how Blue Origin stacks up in the commercial space race.
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The Man Behind Biden's Push for More Competition

Legal scholar Tim Wu has spent years pushing for greater regulation of big American companies. To get his ideas into the mainstream, Wu has done everything from run for office to ride on a roller coaster with Stephen Colbert. WSJ's Ryan Tracy details how Wu's ideas made their way into President Biden's executive order to increase business competition.
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Is Graduate School Worth the Price?

New federal data show that many graduate students don't make nearly enough money to pay back their student loans. WSJ's Melissa Korn explains why some graduates of elite schools, like Columbia University, seem to have the worst outcomes.
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Cuba's Protests Have an Anthem

For the first time in 60 years, mass demonstrations are sweeping Cuba. Protesters are chanting one slogan: 'patria y vida,' or, 'homeland and life.' The phrase - a counterpoint to the revolutionary slogan 'homeland or death' - comes from a song written by Cuban dissidents. WSJ's Santiago Perez dives into the origins of the artist dissident movement and the song that defines this moment.
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Didi's IPO Gets Caught In China's Tech Crackdown

After Didi launched a successful IPO in New York last month, Beijing took punitive action against the ride hailing giant. It also established new rules for Chinese companies that want to list overseas. WSJ's Patrick Barta explains what that means for future economic cooperation between the U.S. and China.
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When an Online Conspiracy Theory Turns Deadly

Christopher Hallett built a business providing online legal advice in custody cases. His main offering was built on a conspiracy theory. But this conspiracy theory ended in murder. WSJ's Georgia Wells and Justin Scheck tell the tale.
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The Quest to Find a Lost Purple Heart

A Marine died in Fallujah at the height of the Iraq War. Years later, his family found out his Purple Heart was listed on an auction site. WSJ's Ben Kesling, who once served in the same company as the Marine, tells the story of how he helped track it down.
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Hollywood's Fast and Furious Reopening

F9, the latest Fast and Furious movie, is a major test of the movie industry's ability to rebound after the pandemic. WSJ's Erich Schwartzel explains how the franchise grew so large, and why it became so important to Hollywood.
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The Mixed Signals from the Collapsed Condo's Past

Last week's building collapse near Miami was an event without modern precedent. Its cause remains a mystery. But building records, eyewitness accounts, and expert assessments are offering possible clues. WSJ's Jon Kamp details the potential warning signs from the history of Champlain Towers South.
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Environmental Investing Frenzy Stretches Meaning of 'Green'

Investors are pouring money into "green" companies, but what actually makes a company green? WSJ's Justin Scheck tells the story of The Metals Company, a deep sea mining startup that's set to go public at $2.9 billion.
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Oath Keepers and the Business of Extremism

The Oath Keepers, a right-wing militia group, had a large presence at the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. Now, a WSJ investigation has revealed the group's funding sources and financial struggles. WSJ's Rebecca Ballhaus explains.
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The Company That Said: We Failed

At an antitrust trial, executives from tobacco giant Altria have been speaking in unusually frank terms about the company's closed e-cigarette business. They've testified that the company failed to innovate. WSJ's Jennifer Maloney explains why Altria is making this unusual defense.
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Britney Spears Wants Her Life (And Money) Back

For the past 13 years, pop star Britney Spears has lived under a legal arrangement that's given her father control over her finances and her life. Yesterday, Spears spoke out publicly against the conservatorship for the first time. WSJ's Neil Shah details Spears's fight to break free.
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Travel Is Back. So Why Is American Airlines Canceling Flights?

As the country resumes flying in droves, the air travel industry is struggling to keep up. American Airlines cancelled hundreds of flights in recent days due to labor shortages. WSJ's Alison Sider explains why carriers are cancelling flights and calling back retired staff.
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iPhones, iPads, and iClinics? Apple's Foray Into Healthcare

Apple has been trying for years to reinvent the healthcare system. In 2016, the company started operating its own health clinics for employees as a testing ground. But, WSJ's Rolfe Winkler explains, Apple's had a hard time accomplishing its ambitions.
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Why Is Everyone Quitting?

Americans are quitting their jobs at record rates. But why? WSJ's Lauren Weber dives into the reasons that Americans have decided to walk away from their careers during a pandemic and breaks down what it means for the economy. Plus, two quitters open up about their decision.
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To The Moon, Part 5: The Comedown

Stocks, it turns out, don't only go up. On the final episode of To The Moon, we follow the GameStop rocket ship as it returns to Earth, and we learn how the traders who poured their money into the stock fared-and why they don't want to quit trading.
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Congress's Case to Break Up Amazon

Last week, Congress introduced legislation that, if passed, could force Amazon to break up. The bills come after a 15-month investigation into whether big tech has monopoly power in the economy. WSJ's Dana Mattioli speaks to Representatives David Cicilline (D., RI) and Ken Buck (R., Col.) about the investigation and why they believe these laws should be passed.
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The Firm Tanking Some of Wall Street's Hottest Stocks

Hindenburg Research is a small investment firm that is having a big impact. Its critical reports about some of the hottest startups have pushed stock prices lower, allowing the firm to profit. WSJ's Amrith Ramkumar talks about the firm, its strategy and what happened to Lordstown Motors.
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The Ruthless Group Behind Ransomware Attacks on Hospitals

A Wall Street Journal investigation has found that one hacking group - called Ryuk - is behind hundreds of attacks on U.S. health care facilities. WSJ's Kevin Poulsen details the rise of Ryuk, and one hospital administrator shares what it's like to be a victim of one of their attacks.
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The Fundamental Flaw (and Alleged Deception) of MoviePass

In 2019, MoviePass declared bankruptcy. The company had offered unlimited movie tickets to customers for a low monthly fee but never found a successful business model. Last week, the Federal Trade Commission alleged that MoviePass executives deceived customers to try to save the business. WSJ's Ben Fritz unspools one of the most audacious stories in Hollywood.
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To The Moon, Part 4: Diamond Hands

Individual investors banded together online to send GameStop soaring in January. Many of those investors were inspired by one man, Keith Gill, aka DeepF-ingValue, aka Roaring Kitty. On episode four of To The Moon, we hear how WSJ reporter Julia Verlaine tracked down Gill, and we trace how his arguments inspired legions of GameStop investors to buy... and hold.
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A New Alzheimer's Drug Brings Hope and Controversy

The FDA this week approved the first new Alzheimer's treatment in nearly 20 years. But it almost didn't make it to market. WSJ's Joseph Walker untangles the complex story behind the drug Aduhelm and why its approval is raising questions.
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The New Corporate Diversity Strategy: Tie it to Executive Pay

Companies are using a new approach to push their executives to prioritize diversity: Tying it to their pay. WSJ's Emily Glazer explains how this tactic came about, and former executive Steven Davis talks about the role boards can play in improving diversity.
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Can Food Delivery Make Money?

Despite a surge in business during the pandemic, food delivery companies like Uber, DoorDash and Grubhub still aren't profitable. WSJ's Preetika Rana explains how these companies are pivoting away from delivering food to make money.
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Why Crypto Is Key to Stopping Ransomware

Ransomware attacks have been hitting U.S. companies hard. But yesterday, law enforcement officials made a big announcement: they recovered more than $2 million from the group behind last month's Colonial Pipeline hack. WSJ's David Uberti details how the U.S. government is fighting back against hackers and explains why going after cryptocurrency is a key part of the strategy.
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The Unintended Consequences of China's One-Child Policy

In 1980, China implemented its one-child policy to curb a swiftly growing population. After raising the cap to two in 2015, last week it was increased to three. WSJ's Jonathan Cheng on the purpose of the original policy and why the government is trying to reverse it now.
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To The Moon, Part 3: A People's History of Investing

Decades ago, trading was the domain of the wealthy elite, but two innovators would change that. The first made investing accessible to the masses. The second made it fun. On episode three of To The Moon, we meet the disruptors who made the markets ready for the GameStop moment. You can find episodes 1 and 2 of this series in The Journal feed, published last Sunday.
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Why Suing Amazon Just Got Easier

Companies have been including arbitration agreements in their terms of service for years, preventing customers from filing lawsuits. Recently, Amazon removed the arbitration clause from its terms of service and told customers they can sue the company instead. WSJ's Sara Randazzo explains what led the company to make the change.
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Will Americans Buy an Electric Truck?

For years, the best-selling vehicle in the U.S. has been Ford's F-150 pickup truck. Now, Ford's making an electric version. WSJ's Mike Colias and Dan Neil explain why Ford's making the move and why it's a big test for the future of electric vehicles.
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Why a Grand Plan to Vaccinate the World Unraveled

Early last year, a few vaccine experts created a group that would help make sure all countries had access to covid vaccines. Called Covax, this initiative hit problem after problem. WSJ's Gabriele Steinhauser explains how this ambitious plan came undone.
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Amazon Bags the MGM Lion

Amazon announced last week it is buying the Hollywood movie studio MGM for $8.4 billion, including debt. WSJ's Erich Schwartzel explains how Amazon hopes the studio will help it compete in the intensifying streaming wars.
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To The Moon, Part 2: 'The Birth of the Yolo'

A man in a wolf mask. A wild gamble. A fortune passed on from a deceased uncle. Years before the world learned about WallStreetBets, WallStreetBets learned about the YOLO. On episode two of To The Moon, we meet the guy who started it all.
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To The Moon, Part 1: 'How Much Do Islands Cost?'

When GameStop's stock surged this winter, Wall Street was shocked to learn that a bunch of amateur investors had all piled in. Who were these people and where had they come from? On episode one of To The Moon, we meet the force that shook Wall Street and hear what it's like to suddenly see $800,000 in your account.
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Conspiracy Theory or Science? The Lab Leak Theory is Back

The origins of Covid-19 are still unknown, but the possibility that it could have escaped from a Chinese lab is back in the news. WSJ's Betsy McKay explains why this idea is getting renewed attention.
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How Internet Buzz Drove a SPAC Even Higher

Early this year, a storm of intrigue brewed online around the electric vehicle company Lucid Motors and its potential merger with a SPAC. WSJ's Eliot Brown explains how the buzz helped drive the valuation sky high and ultimately left some investors burned.
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Biden's Plan for Police Reform: The Consent Decree

A year after the murder of George Floyd, the Justice Department is stepping up its oversight of local police departments. Last month, the DOJ opened investigations into police conduct in Minneapolis and Louisville. WSJ's Sadie Gurman talks to Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta about why the federal government is doing this, and the head of Newark, N.J. police talks about what it's like when the federal government steps in.
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An Activist Investor and the Showdown Over Exxon's Future

An activist investor is trying to take over four seats on Exxon's board of directors, arguing the company should cut its emissions by 2050. But Exxon is pushing back. WSJ's Christopher M. Matthews previews the shareholder meeting showdown, where the fight will be decided.
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Inflation Is Happening. Should You Be Worried?

Inflation is the highest it's been in over a decade. WSJ's Jon Hilsenrath explains why the Federal Reserve says everything is under control while some other economists fret.
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Introducing: To The Moon

In January, a group of Redditors started pouring their savings into the stock of GameStop, a struggling video game retailer. Overnight, everything Wall Street thought it understood about how small-time traders invest changed. While the moment may have surprised Wall Street, it was years in the making. This is a trailer for our series, To The Moon. Out May 30th.
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Four Years Trapped on a Cargo Ship

Sailor Mohammad Aisha was stuck on a cargo ship near the mouth of the Suez Canal for four years - alone for much of that time. WSJ's Joe Parkinson tells the story of how this could happen and how he survived.
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Hertz Rewards Its True Believers

A strange thing happened last year after the rental car company Hertz filed for bankruptcy: its stock took off. Old hands on Wall Street thought that the people buying the stock - individual investors with no ties to institutions - were making a bad bet. But now, WSJ's Alexander Gladstone says, the little guys are getting the last laugh and seeing a big windfall.
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