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Wanna see a trick? Give us any topic and we can tie it back to the economy. At Planet Money, we explore the forces that shape our lives and bring you along for the ride. Don't just understand the economy – understand the world. Wanna go deeper? Subscribe to Planet Money+ and get sponsor-free episodes of Planet Money, The Indicator, and Planet Money Summer School. Plus access to bonus content. It's a new way to support the show you love. Learn more at


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Wanna see a trick? Give us any topic and we can tie it back to the economy. At Planet Money, we explore the forces that shape our lives and bring you along for the ride. Don't just understand the economy – understand the world. Wanna go deeper? Subscribe to Planet Money+ and get sponsor-free episodes of Planet Money, The Indicator, and Planet Money Summer School. Plus access to bonus content. It's a new way to support the show you love. Learn more at






The battle over Osage headrights

Richard J. Lonsinger is a member of the Ponca tribe of Oklahoma, who was adopted at a young age into a white family of three. He eventually reconnected with his birth family, but when his birth mother passed away in 2010, he wasn't included in the distribution of her estate. Feeling both hurt and excluded, he asked a judge to re-open her estate, to give him a part of one particular asset: an Osage headright. An Osage headright is a share of profits from resources like oil, gas, and coal...


Inside a bank run

Sometimes you hear these stories about an airplane that suddenly nosedives. Everyone onboard thinks this is it, and then the plane levels out and everything is fine. For about 72 hours, people and companies that had deposited millions of dollars at the Silicon Valley Bank — many of whom were in the tech industry — thought they had lost absolutely everything to a bank collapse. Two weeks later, the situation at Silicon Valley Bank has leveled off. The FDIC seized the bank and eventually made...


Planet Money Records Vol. 3: Making a hit

Since we started Planet Money Records and released the 47-year-old song "Inflation," the song has taken off. It recently hit 1 million streams on Spotify. And we now have a full line of merch — including a limited edition vinyl record; a colorful, neon hoodie; and 70s-inspired stickers — After starting a label and negotiating our first record deal, we're taking the Inflation song out into the world to figure out the hidden economics of the music business. Things get...


How Silicon Valley Bank failed

Silicon Valley Bank was the 16th largest bank in America, the bank of choice for tech startups and big-name venture capitalists. Then, in the span of just a few days, it collapsed. Whispers that SVB might be in trouble spread like wildfire through group texts and Twitter posts. Depositors raced to empty their accounts, withdrawing $42 billion in a single day. Last Friday, after regulators declared that SVB had failed, the FDIC seized the bank. As the dust settles on the biggest bank failure...


Dude, where's my streaming TV show?

Over the past year, dozens of shows have been disappearing from streaming platforms like HBO Max and Showtime. Shows like Minx, Made for Love, FBoy Island, and even big budget hits like Westworld have been removed entirely. So why did these platforms, after investing millions of dollars in creating original content, decide not just to cancel those shows, but to make them unavailable altogether? We dive into the economics of the television industry looking for answers to a streaming mystery...


The value of good teeth

As a kid, Ryanne Jones' friend accidentally hit her in the mouth with a hammer, knocking out her two front teeth. Her parents never had enough money for the dental care needed to fix them, so Ryanne lived much of her adult life with a chipped and crooked smile. Ryanne spent a while as a single mom working low-wage jobs, but she had higher aspirations: she interviewed dozens of times a year for higher-paying roles that she was more than qualified for. But she never landed any of them. And to...



The 90s sit-com Seinfeld is often called "a show about nothing." Lauded for its observational humor, this quick-witted show focussed on four hapless New Yorkers navigating work, relationships...yada yada yada. Jerry, George, Elaine & Kramer set themselves apart from the characters who populated shows like Friends or Cheers, by being the exact opposite of the characters audiences would normally root for. These four New Yorkers were overly analytical, calculating, and above all, selfish. In...


CBOhhhh, that's what they do

If you are a congressperson or a senator and you have an idea for a new piece of legislation, at some point someone will have to tell you how much it costs. But, how do you put a price on something that doesn't exist yet? Since 1974, that has been the job of the Congressional Budget Office, or the CBO. The agency plays a critical role in the legislative process: bills can live and die by the cost estimates the CBO produces. The economists and budget experts at the CBO, though, are far more...


Meow Money Meow Problems

More than 20 years ago, something unusual happened in the small town of Dixfield, Maine. A lady named Barbara Thorpe had left almost all of her money—$200,000—to benefit the cats of her hometown. When Barbara died in 2002, those cats suddenly got very, very rich. And that is when all the trouble began. Barbara's gift set off a sprawling legal battle that drew in a crew of crusading cat ladies, and eventually, the town of Dixfield itself. It made national news. But after all these years, no...


Hollywood's Black List (Classic)

This episode originally ran in 2020. In 2005, Franklin Leonard was a junior executive at Leonardo DiCaprio's production company. A big part of his job was to find great scripts. The only thing — most of the 50,000-some scripts registered with the Writers Guild of America every year aren't that great. Franklin was drowning in bad scripts ... So to help find the handful that will become the movies that change our lives, he needed a better way forward. Today on the show — how a math-loving...


Jay & Shai's debt ceiling adventure

Every year, the U.S. government spends more money than it takes in. In order to fund all that spending, the country takes on debt. Congress has the power to limit how much debt the U.S. takes on. Right now, the debt limit is $31.4 trillion dollars. Once we reach that limit, Congress has a few options so that the government keeps paying its bills: Raise the debt limit, suspend it, or eliminate it entirely. That debate and negotiations are back this season. One thing that is in short supply,...


Two Indicators: Inside the Fed, then and now

A lot of the time, economic policy can seem pretty impersonal — cold, hard, data-driven. But at the heart of the Federal Reserve are people: fallible, complicated people who are just doing their best to steer the economy in the right direction. Often, we remember them just for their economic decisions. But today, we're airing two episodes from our daily economics show The Indicator that profile the people inside the Fed. First, we're heading back to the 1970s to revisit Arthur Burns'...


Our 2023 valentines

Every Valentine's Day, we at Planet Money consider the things that we love, the things that we can't stop talking about, the things that get our hearts a good way. And we give them valentines! This year our valentines go out to: ImportYeti, a website that lets you see exactly where U.S. companies are importing goods from. Economic data revisions, those tweaks to the data that make things like the jobs numbers even more accurate. The office (the place, not the show). Audio...


The ice cream conspiracy

Take a look in any supermarket ice cream freezer section and you may see a mystery. There are big containers of the typical ice cream brands: Breyers, Turkey Hill, and Edy's. And there are specialty brands that make gelato, low-fat and vegan ice creams. And then there are the fancy pints: which is mostly Ben & Jerry's and Häagen-Dazs. Häagen-Dazs has flavors like vanilla, chocolate, pistachio—the sort of flavors that run smooth. And then Ben & Jerry's specializes in chunky flavors: Cherry...


Baby's first market failure

Anyone who has tried shopping for day care knows that it is tough out there. For one, it is hard even to get your hands on information about costs, either online or over the phone – day cares will often only share their prices after you have taken a tour of their facilities. Even once you find a place you like, many day cares have waitlists stretching 6 months, 9 months, a year. Waitlists are a classic economic sign that something isn't right, that prices are too low. But ask any parent...


Groundhog Day 2023

It's Groundhog Day, and once again, the eyes of the nation have turned to a small town in Western Pennsylvania. Every February 2nd, the only story anyone can talk about is whether or not Punxsutawney Phil will see his own shadow. If he does: six more weeks of winter. If he doesn't: spring is on its way. This year, in a cruel twist of fate reminiscent of the 1993 movie Groundhog Day, two Planet Money hosts have found themselves facing a curse. They'll be trapped in this never-ending...


To all the econ papers I've loved before

A great economics paper does two things. It takes on a big question, and it finds a smart way to answer that question. But some papers go even further. The very best papers have the power to change lives.That was the case for three economists we spoke to: Nancy Qian, Belinda Archibong, and Kyle Greenberg. They all stumbled on important economics papers at crucial moments in their careers, and those papers gave them a new way to see the world. On today's show - how economics papers on the...


The story of "Monopoly" and American capitalism

Monopoly is one of the best-selling board games in history. The game's staying power may in part be because of strong American lore — the idea that anyone, with just a little bit of cash, can rise from rags to riches. Mary Pilon, author of The Monopolists: Obsession, Fury, and the Scandal Behind the World's Favorite Board Game. But there's another origin story – a very different one that promotes a very different image of capitalism. (And with two sets of starkly different rules.) That...


Charles Ponzi's scheme

Some of history's biggest financial scams owe their name to Charles Ponzi. Here's the story of the man behind the eponymous scheme. Subscribe to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at


Big Rigged (Classic)

Driving a truck used to mean freedom. Now it means a mountain of debt. Subscribe to Planet Money+ in Apple Podcasts or at