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Edamame beans are a popular Asian appetizer, and they're beginning to get a foothold in the U.S. market. An Arkansas company is now trying to cash in on this edamame boom.

You're driving down the street, and there on the corner, something familiar: a person waving a giant advertisement. Wait, that's not a real person! In cities across the sign-waving mannequins are helping to advertise things like cash for gold, furniture and apartments.

The main reason? The debacle in Washington. The credit ratings agency — one of the big three — said "faith" in the credit of the country is in danger.

The Thursday deadline for raising the federal debt limit is fast approaching, but the government is still shut down. Host Michel Martin asks Sudeep Reddy of The Wall Street Journal and Time magazine's Rana Foroohar, if the U.S. is in a debt crisis.

A year after she was shot in head by the Taliban, Malala Yousafzai was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Malala, and her father Ziauddin Yousafzai, talk with host Michel Martin about their hope for Pakistan's future.

Homebuilders are finding there's a post-recession demand for bigger houses, and it's partly thanks to boomerang kids who can't find jobs and aging parents who can't afford to live alone anymore.

Amid skyrocketing real estate and rental prices, low-income families are fighting to stay put in order to access world-class public schools. One group of families battling the closure of Palo Alto's last mobile home park is getting help from a local PTA that values diversity.

The question this time is not whether race can be a factor in college admissions, but rather whether state voters can ban affirmative action altogether by referendum. In 2006, Michigan voters did just that with a ballot initiative amending the state's constitution.

Banks use credit scores and similar metrics to assess creditworthiness. A company called Kabbage that lends working capital to small businesses does some of that but also relies on unconventional measures, using real-time data from things like UPS shipments, eBay, Facebook and Twitter.

JPMorgan Chase says it will cover Social Security and Welfare payments for its customers if the government goes into default or the shutdown continues. The bank would almost certainly get its money back once Congress comes to an agreement.

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