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Fast news explainers for a world in flux. Every week, Bloomberg Radio's Charlie Pellett brings you the context, background and meaning for an issue, event or idea in the news.

Popular episodes

When Your Phone Is Your Wallet

Oct 30 • 06:16

The future of money is in your pocket — the one you keep your phone in, not your wallet. A growing portion of the world’s population is making phone-assisted transactions. They’re using a variety of technologies, from the text-message system popular in Kenya to the seamless credit card-and-app arrangements that move money for every Lyft and Uber ride. It’s a revolution tha...

The Cost of Carbon

Oct 23 • 05:42

When factories belch smoke, everybody pays. Shouldn’t polluters be the ones to feel the sting instead? That’s the big idea behind carbon pricing: Add a levy so that emissions of greenhouse gases have a cost in line with their environmental damage. Using market forces should be the most efficient way to get companies to change their ways and to fight climate change. More co...

Are We Measuring Hurricanes Wrong?

Oct 18 • 07:30

Call anything a Category 5 storm, disaster or crisis and immediately it sounds awful. The label owes much of its weight to the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, which is cited routinely (if rarely by its full name) this time of year during the Atlantic hurricane season. But destructive storms like Hurricane Florence underscore the inherent weaknesses in the scale, and e...

What Countries Are Doing About Deforestation

Oct 10 • 03:57

When it comes to saving the world’s rainforests, governments can make a big difference, and fast. Take Indonesia, which in 2012 surpassed Brazil as the world’s leader in tropical rainforest destruction. In 2017, it engineered a 60 percent drop in tree loss from the previous year by strictly enforcing protections in vulnerable regions. On the other hand, governments can rev...

Fintech and the Digital Future

Oct 4 • 06:39

Not so long ago, homebuyers, entrepreneurs and investors went hat-in-hand to the bank to apply for a mortgage, small-business credit line or brokerage account. Financial technology, or fintech, is rapidly changing all that by making it easier to save, borrow and invest online or with a mobile device, without ever dealing with a traditional bank. For old-fashioned banks and...

When Will Ultrafast Internet Come to Your Phone?

Sep 25 • 06:11

A surge in mobile-data demand worldwide has more and more people asking when they’ll get that speedy next-generation 5G mobile service. Companies are wondering, too, since 5G has the potential to revolutionize everything from self-driving cars to robotic surgery. Mobile providers are racing to patent technologies that will form the industry standards and build working netw...

Faking Videos Is Easier Than Ever, and That's Scary

Sep 24 • 06:56

A minute-long video of Barack Obama has been seen more than 4.8 million times since April. It shows the former U.S. president seated, with the American flag in the background, speaking directly to the viewer and using an obscenity to refer to his successor, Donald Trump. Or rather, his lips move as the words are spoken. The video is actually a so-called deep fake made by a...

Why the World Is Watching Canada's Pot Legalization

Sep 12 • 06:51

All eyes are on Canada as it prepares to legalize recreational marijuana in October, becoming only the second country to do so after Uruguay. The pending change has touched off an investment boom and pushed up valuations of Canada’s cannabis producers. They’re enjoying a first-mover advantage as medical and recreational pot gain traction from the U.S. to Germany. Canada’s ...

How Raging Heatwaves Affect the Global Economy

Sep 4 • 07:24

To see the impact of record-breaking temperatures around the world, watch wheat. Found in everything from bread to noodles, biscuits to cereals, beer to cakes -- there is no more widely grown staple crop and more than 170 million metric tons trade every year. So when the weather ruins harvests in one spot, it can shock markets and economies that are thousands of miles away...

Market Meltup

Aug 31 • 05:17

Once again, stocks are hot. Following a drubbing earlier in the year, benchmark indexes are setting new records as investors ignore warning signs and keep piling in. Is this another rally justified by robust earnings, lower taxes and less regulation? Or is it something that rings alarms, a melt-up? Charlie Pellet talks to Luke Kawa to sort out the difference....

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