If America defaults on its debt this week, it won't be the first economic superpower to do so. Imperial Spain was a chronic defaulter in the 16th and 17th centuries, and this helped lead to its downfall.
Bitcoins have been in the limelight a lot lately, with their skyrocketing value that made some people wealthy overnight and their link to financial improprieties and criminal schemes. Now a New York regulator is holding hearings that could help Bitcoin soar or sink as a virtual currency.
Mary Kay Magistad spent a quarter of a century living in Asia, reporting on that region's explosive growth. Now that she's come home, she finds herself breathing a little easier — but straining her ears at the silence.