Scott Horsley

Scott Horsley is NPR's Chief Economics Correspondent. He reports on ups and downs in the national economy as well as fault lines between booming and busting communities.

Horsley spent a decade on the White House beat, covering both the Trump and Obama administrations. Before that, he was a San Diego-based business reporter for NPR, covering fast food, gasoline prices, and the California electricity crunch of 2000. He also reported from the Pentagon during the early phases of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Before joining NPR in 2001, Horsley worked for NPR Member stations in San Diego and Tampa, as well as commercial radio stations in Boston and Concord, New Hampshire. Horsley began his professional career as a production assistant for NPR's Morning Edition.

Horsley earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and an MBA from San Diego State University. He lives in Washington, DC, with his dog, Rosie.

Here's a little encouragement for last-minute tax filers: Your chance of being audited by the IRS this year is as low as it has been in decades.

Years of budget cuts have hollowed out enforcement of the nation's tax laws. Now, even the Trump administration says those cuts may have gone too far.

Adjusted for inflation, IRS funding has been cut by about 25 percent since the beginning of the decade. And staffing for tax enforcement has fallen by nearly a third.

Updated at 12:41 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is preparing to slap tariffs on billions of dollars' worth of imports from Europe, in retaliation for what it calls unfair subsidies of Airbus jets. The proposed tariffs would cover not only aircraft but also wine, cheese, woolen suits and other signature European products.

Who says a dollar doesn't go as far as it used to?

When it comes to dollar bills, a new report from the federal government says they're lasting more than twice as long as they were at the beginning of the decade.

And that's upending an old argument about replacing the dollar bill with a $1 coin.

Updated at 8:45 a.m. ET

The U.S. labor market bounced back strongly in March after a lackluster showing in February.

U.S. employers added 196,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department reported Friday. That's a big improvement from February, when revised figures show just 33,000 jobs were added. But it's a slowdown from the last three months of 2018, when monthly job growth averaged 233,000.

President Trump said he wants to appoint former Godfather's Pizza CEO and Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain to the Federal Reserve Board.

"I find Herman to be an outstanding person," Trump told reporters during an Oval Office appearance with the vice premier of China on Thursday. "I would think he would do very well there."

Updated at 3:08 p.m ET

Frustrated by the large number of Central Americans who have been entering the country from Mexico, President Trump doubled down on his threat to close the Southern U.S. border.

"I'm ready to close it," Trump said Tuesday. "If we don't make a deal with Congress, the border is going to be closed, 100 percent."

Updated at 4:44 p.m. ET

Linda McMahon, the famous pro wrestling promoter who stayed largely out of the limelight as small business administrator, is quitting President Trump's Cabinet after more than two years on the job.

McMahon plans to join the pro-Trump superPAC America First Action, according to a source with direct knowledge of the situation.

"Linda McMahon has done an incredible job," Trump told reporters Friday at his Florida vacation home. "She has been a superstar."

The U.S. economy grew somewhat more slowly at the end of last year than initially thought. Forecasts suggest that slowdown will continue in 2019.

President Trump's pick for a powerful post on the Federal Reserve Board is drawing mounting criticism from economists of all stripes.

Trump said on Friday that he plans to nominate Stephen Moore, a campaign adviser and conservative pundit, to serve on the Fed's Board of Governors.

The stock market tumbled Friday as investors digested an ominous warning sign: Interest rates on long-term government debt fell below the rate on short-term bills. That's often a signal that a recession is on the horizon.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 460 points Friday, or about 1.8 percent. The broader S&P 500 index fell 1.9 percent.

Ordinarily, the yield on long-term debt is higher, just as 10-year certificates of deposit tend to pay higher interest rates than three-month CDs.

Updated at 4:16 p.m. ET

The Federal Reserve is signaling that it may be done hiking interest rates this year, amid signs of economic slowing.

With great power, comes great responsibility.

Or the chance to pull a practical joke.

Pranksters included some whimsical credits buried in the fine print of an annual White House economic report, making it seem that Peter Parker and Aunt May had joined the staff of the president's Council of Economic Advisers.

Updated at 5:55 p.m. ET

There aren't many people who can command attention at the White House, the classrooms of Princeton University, and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Alan Krueger did all three.

Krueger, who served as economic adviser to former President Barack Obama, died over the weekend at age 58. The cause was suicide, according to a statement from his family, released by Princeton University where Krueger taught.

Updated at 4:56 p.m. ET

President Trump used his veto pen for the first time Friday, after Congress tried to reverse his national emergency declaration and rein in spending on a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Congressional critics do not appear to have the votes to override Trump's veto. So, as a practical matter, the administration can continue to spend billions of dollars more on border barriers than lawmakers authorized, unless and until the courts intervene.

Updated at 11:12 a.m. ET

A federal order grounding all 737 Max jetliners in the U.S. comes after repeated assurances from the manufacturer that the planes are safe.

Updated at 4:50 p.m. ET

President Trump's budget proposal for 2020 calls for $8.6 billion in new border wall funding, a signal that the White House is not backing away from a demand that triggered a 35-day government shutdown.

The border wall is just one flashpoint in the president's $4.7 trillion budget blueprint. Trump is also calling for a 5 percent boost in military spending along with deep cuts to domestic programs and foreign aid.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

In his books and speeches, President Trump has often promoted the power of walking away from a deal. And that is what he did in Vietnam today, ending a summit early with the leader of North Korea.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Updated at 11:21 p.m. ET

President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, at their summit meeting on Thursday in Hanoi, Vietnam, expressed optimism about reaching a deal over nuclear arms.

Asked by a reporter if he is willing to "denuclearize," Kim said, "If I'm not willing to do that, I wouldn't be here right now."

Earlier, Trump had said he's in "no rush," adding "We just want to do the right deal."

Kim, speaking through an interpreter, said, "From what I feel right now, I do have a feeling that good results will come out."

President Trump's longtime friend Tom Barrack has been getting a lot of attention lately — much of it not good.

Barrack was the chairman of Trump's inaugural committee, which is now under scrutiny by federal prosecutors.

He was roundly criticized for comments he made this month about the killing of Saudi journalist, Jamal Khashoggi.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

In declaring a national emergency Friday, President Trump tried to underscore the urgency of what he calls a national security crisis along the U.S. border with Mexico, while at the same time downplaying the gravity of his response.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

What started off as a strong holiday shopping season ended with a whimper, as consumers, rattled by a trade war and a government shutdown, tightened their belts. The Commerce Department said retail sales fell 1.2 percent between November and December, the sharpest drop in nine years.

President Trump renewed his call for border wall funding and accused House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of "rigid" opposition, in an interview airing two days before Trump's State of the Union address.

The tone of the president's remarks in an interview taped Friday with CBS calls into question whether Trump will actually use Tuesday's primetime speech to appeal for compromise, as advertised.

The Trump administration opened high-stakes trade talks with China on Wednesday. The two sides have just over a month to reach an agreement, or risk an escalation in their costly trade battle.

The administration has already imposed tariffs on some $250 billion in Chinese imports. President Trump has threatened to increase and expand those tariffs, but he agreed to hold off until early March, while negotiators try to hammer out a deal.

Updated at 6:37 p.m. ET

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross downplayed the hardships caused by a partial government shutdown on Thursday as some 800,000 federal workers prepared to miss a second consecutive payday.

Ross told CNBC he is puzzled by reports of federal workers turning to food banks and other forms of relief, suggesting they should be able to obtain bridge loans to tide them over until the government reopens.

Updated at 1:15 a.m. ET

President Trump said Wednesday night he won't be looking for an alternative place to give the State of the Union address. Earlier in the day, asked about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., insisting he could not speak on the House floor until a partial government shutdown is over, the president said, "We'll do something in the alternative."

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Sunday marks the second anniversary of President Trump's inauguration. At the midpoint of his four-year term, Trump has already delivered on some of his campaign promises, such as boosting funding for the military.

President Trump spoke to the centennial gathering of the American Farm Bureau Federation Monday, cultivating ties to rural voters who were a key factor in his 2016 election.

"I'm proud to be a great friend of the farmer," Trump said, addressing the group's convention for the second year in a row.

The president drew applause as he recounted administration efforts to reduce regulation and save the very wealthiest farmers from the estate tax.

Pages