The Labor Department announced unemployment figures for April on Friday. The jobless rate fell to 8.1 percent, from 8.2 percent in March. There have been conflicting signals about the strength of the economy, and the way voters interpret those signals could have a major impact on the presidential race.
Well, for kids and parents listening to our show today, let's leave you with a little good food for thought. Our last word in business is: Hello Kitty. That's what some lucky travelers in Asia might be saying if they board an airplane decorated, inside and out, with the famous Japanese character.
OK, so it's still officially spring, but the movie world is kicking off the summer blockbuster season this weekend with a whole lineup of superheroes in Marvel's "The Avengers." Here's film critic Kenneth Turan's review.
Undercover police stand on a Barcelona street during Thursday's demonstration against austerity cuts. On the same day, the European Central Bank's governing council met there but offered no relief to painful austerity measures.
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi speaks at a news conference in Barcelona on Thursday. Central bank chiefs gathered under tight security in Spain to discuss whether to provide more easy money for governments as the political resolve to rein in deficits showed signs of crumbling.
After months of punishing austerity measures, some Spaniards want a break and maybe even some stimulus from Europe. But that didn't happen at Thursday's meeting of the governing board of the European Central Bank.
The location of the ECB summit in Barcelona was kept secret, which may indicate how well officials thought they'd be received in the Spanish port city. Thousands of demonstrators flooded the city's streets, as did police, some in plainclothes and masks, with helicopters overhead.
One in four Spaniards is jobless, and the rate is more than 50 percent for youth.
Tuesday, President Obama scored a foreign policy success when he traveled to Afghanistan. Now he's being buffeted by the case of Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng. Meanwhile, Romney had been getting some attention for his critique that the president was politicizing the anniversary of Osama bin Laden's death. That is, until Obama went to Afghanistan, signed an international agreement and addressed the troops and the nation.
At this point in the presidential race, Romney faces the difficult task of outdoing an incumbent president.
The Rickshaw Dumpling Truck is a retired postal van, painted red and filled with Chinese dumplings. I'm riding shotgun with Kenny Lao, the van's co-owner. It's a weekday morning, and we're driving into Manhattan looking for a killer spot to set up shop for the day.
"I think there is that mystical spot in midtown that every truck owner dreams of," Lao says. "Easy parking. It's a wide sidewalk. There's no restaurant but there's lots of offices."
There are 3,000 year-round food trucks and carts competing for that mystical spot. And no one has an official place to park.
Ricardo Isaias Zavala comes from a long line of vaqueros — cowboys who worked the ranches of Southeast Texas in the 19th and 20th centuries. That tradition stopped with his grandfather — but in the Zavala family, parts of it live on.
Ricardo's grandfather's name was Vicente Domingo Villa. His family moved from ranch to ranch, looking for work. Most of the ranches were in the scrubland of South Texas, east of Laredo.
A picture posted on the website www.muslm.net in 2009 allegedly shows al-Qaida's Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who has claimed to be the mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp.
The man who claims to have orchestrated the Sept. 11 attacks is expected to appear in a military courtroom this Saturday. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other men are supposed to answer formal charges related to their roles in the plot.
Their arraignment will be at Guantanamo Bay, and it is the first step that leads — possibly years from now — to a military trial.