SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: On the rise. Why
everything from rates to the price of oil is heading higher. Everything,
that is, except stocks.
BILL GRIFFETH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Cause for concern?
Companies added the fewest number of workers to their payrolls in more than
a year, putting investors on alert ahead of the government`s jobs report on
HERERA: The whistleblower. Meet the man who cracked open the secret
world of Swiss banks and went to jail and says he would do it all over
again. The first of a three-part series starts tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS
REPORT for Wednesday, May 6th.
Good evening, everyone. I`m Sue Herera.
GRIFFETH: And I`m Bill Griffeth, in for Tyler Mathisen tonight. By
the way, he earlier today spoke to Charles Schwab CEO Walter Bettinger and
we`ll bring you that interview coming up here just in a few minutes.
In the meantime, stocks fell for a second day. The Dow Jones
Industrial Average barely clinging to gains for the year overall as bond
yields continue to rise for an eight-straight day, adding to the anxiety —
a warning from of all people, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, about the
stock market. That came during a conversation with Christine Lagarde of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JANET YELLEN, FEDERAL RESERVE CHAIR: I guess I would highlight that
equity market evaluations at this point generally are quite high. Now,
they`re not so high when you compare the returns on equities to the returns
on safe assets, like bonds which are also very low. But, there are
potential dangers there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRIFFETH: By the close of trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average
dropped by 86 points, closed at 17,841. At one time, it was down almost
200 points. The NASDAQ fell by 19; the S&P 500 shed nine points.
As for the bond market, that yield on the 10-year continued to climb.
And Bob Pisani has more on why the stock market is so bothered by those
BOB PISANI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Stocks dropped
again today and again traders are having trouble digesting a rise in bond
yields. Those yields had been rising for several days and today, 10-year
yields rose to the highest levels since early March.
What`s driving this yield rally? Well, first, there`s commodities,
particularly oil and also copper and other base metals. They`ve been
rising recently. That`s fuelling inflation worries.
Another issue is what`s going on with European bonds. German bond
yields, for example, have recently gone from 15 or so basis points to 50
basis points. As big bond players like Bill Gross and Jeff Gundlach have
been saying, German bonds were a big short, the yields. That rapid and
violent rise means that other global bond yields like treasuries had to
There`s also been a big unwind of some very successful trades
recently. Remember, traders have made a lot money this year on several
positions. First, low on the dollar, second, short the euro, third, short
oil, and fourth, long European equities, particularly Germany.
All this is coming unwound. Today, the dollar was weaker, the euro
was its highest level since February, oil hits highest level in a year, and
German stocks hit their highs a month ago. They`re down 8 percent. The
result: interest rates sensitive groups like utilities, telecom and REITs
all under-perform today.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Bob Pisani at the New York Stock
HERERA: Also weighing on stocks, a decline on worker productivity in
the first quarter, and a disappointing report on private sector employment.
Private payrolls increased in April, according to ADP, but not by as much
as expected. Is it cause for concern?
Steve Liesman has more.
STEVE LIESMAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A
key report that signals health in the jobs market coming in weaker than
expected today, raising questions about just how strong the government`s
jobs report will be on Friday.
The private payroll company ADP, which estimates job growth in the
nation from activity in the payrolls that it manages, says 169,000 private
sector jobs were created in April, below Wall Street`s consensus.
The big story: ADP estimated that goods-producing jobs such as in
construction, manufacturing and in the oil sector lost 1,000 jobs, and
there were barely any job creation among big businesses.
MARK ZANDI, ECONOMIST: If you go back in the early part of the
recovery, it was the big guys that were really doing well. The small guys
were really struggling and now, things have flipped around. And it`s
largely because the small guys are tied into the American consumer and into
the housing sector.
LIESMAN: The weak report raises concerns that Wall Street could be
too optimistic for the jobs report Friday from the government. The
forecast is for 228,000 jobs for both government and the private sector.
Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) after ADP shaved its forecast but most economists
kept them unchanged.
The report Friday will help answer question whether job growth will
weaken along with over all GDP growth.
JOE LAVORGNA, DEUTSCHE BANK: There`s this big discrepancy between
employment and GDP growth. And if history repeats, what will wind up
happening is, over time, we will see GDP revised higher. It won`t look
like the boom, it will be better.
LIESMAN (on camera): LaVorgna points out that 2014 was the best year
for job growth in 15 years. Things can`t be that bad in the economy if job
growth was that good.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Steve Liesman.
LIESMAN: Well, the changing interest race environment was one of the
topics being discussed at the nation`s biggest gathering of mutual fund
executives hosted by the Investment Company Institute earlier today.
Tyler Mathisen spoke to Walt Bettinger, CEO of Charles Schwab. They
talked about whether investors are well-positioned for that shift.
TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT: Let`s talk about the broad
changes that I think most people in the business expect will happen later
this year and that is slowly rising interest rates. Already this week,
we`ve seen the 10-year bond go above 2.2 percent. That is a fairly
WALT BETTINGER, CHARLES SCHWAB CEO: It is.
MATHISEN: How do you think individual investors will react to that?
Are they well positioned for that or will they be surprised by the effect
of rising rates on most especially their bond portfolios?
BETTINGER: I don`t think they will. Most of the increase is likely
at the short end of the curb. Now, if you do get meaningful increases in
the long end, and you talk about how the 10-year has moved, that`s going to
create some NAV or net asset value declines and you could see people in
bond mutual funds and bond ETFs wanting to sell if that occurs.
That`s probably the biggest issue that sits out there. I`m not sure
that history shows that equity markets move a lot on the early increases
that the Fed might make, but you could see it if the long end of the curve
goes up, people wanting to sell. And of course, what is talked about in
the industry is, will there be enough buyers at the point in time that
those who want to get out of their bond funds or bond ETFs are ready to
MATHISEN: Time will tell.
BETTINGER: Time will tell, for sure.
MATHISEN: Walt Bettinger, thanks very much.
BETTINGER: Thank you, Tyler.
MATHISEN: Good to see you.
GRIFFETH: And Tyler will have more from that mutual conference
tomorrow right here on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
HERERA: Our next guest agrees that we are at a turning point for
rates and the stock market. So, what should have an investor do?
John Traynor is the chief investment officer at People`s United Bank,
$5.5 million wealth management division.
Welcome, John. Nice to have you here.
JOHN TRAYNOR, PEOPLE`S UNITED BANK: Thank you. Thank you. Good to
have you here.
HERERA: Why don`t we pick up where Tyler and his guest left off? Do
you feel that most investors have anticipated this pivot point in the
market? Because I understand you agree that we are at that point?
TRAYNOR: What we`re seeing right now is almost a replay, a mini
replay of what we saw in 2013. We had the taper tantrum in 2013, and then
the market backed off and we got relaxed in 2014. We`re seeing the same
And the question that investors are wrestling with today is the same
one in `13. Will the economy be able to grow once the Fed starts raising
interest rates? We think it will. We think the economy will continue
growing, but that`s where we are, that`s the inflection point that we`re in
right now. And for investors, how you answer that question is critical to
how you perform going forward.
GRIFFETH: How many years, though, John, have we been hearing people
say we`re at the end of the bull market for bonds and yields will rise,
especially on the long end of the curve and they`ve been wrong every single
year. We are at 2.25 percent right, the high for the year. But are we
destined to go much higher, do you think?
TRAYNOR: Yes, well, I will put — first of all, I`ll plead the Fifth
and say that I might have been in that camp also, saying rates were going
up. So, I`ll be honest.
But what I believe you`re going to see is that the Fed — very
different than what we saw with Greenspan and Bernanke. We think the Fed
will raise rates, wait and see what happens. Raise rates, see what
happens. So, it will be a very small ramp. So, rates will be lower for
longer but the trend will be up.
HERERA: So, John, give us advice on where we should put our money.
You like dividend paying stocks but you have two picks for us. Let`s start
with the first one, G.E.
TRAYNOR: Sure, sure. One of the things that we`re talking with our
clients about is that we`re in the seventh year of what has been a very
good bull market. You need to understand we`re in later stages of the
market, so you should be more focused on total return rather than capital
appreciation. You don`t want to be adding a lot of aggressiveness to your
But the reason that we like G.E. is it`s got a great dividend, the
company is finally focused on what we believe is the better part of their
business. They`re getting out of the financial services industry and a lot
of the benefit that they accrue from those sales will be returned to
investors and share buybacks and dividends. So, we`re very positive on
G.E. Got a good company with a good yield and it will serve you well.
GRIFFETH: Very quickly, John, where would you invest in the fixed
TRAYNOR: If you were starting with a portfolio today, the area that
we are most concerned about are treasuries. We think they are very
expensive. We would agree with the comments from Chairman Yellen. So,
we`re under weighting treasuries. We like good corporates.
We actually have, let`s say a 5 percent position in most portfolios in
high yield bonds. High yield bonds have actually held up better than the
Barclays Ag during the last couple of weeks. We think high yield, good
corporates, and about 25 percent in treasuries would be a good bond
HERERA: All right. John Traynor, thank you. Appreciate it.
TRAYNOR: Thank you.
HERERA: John Traynor with People`s United Bank.
GRIFFETH: Well, they were a great buy when interest rates were low.
We`re talking about real estate investment trusts or REITs. They`ve been
on a tear for a few years now. But suddenly, a selloff.
Diana Olick examines the move lower, which may in fact be a buying
DIANA OLICK, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):
Apartments, offices, retail — publicly traded bundles of these buildings
or real estate investment trusts saw tremendous gains over the last few
years, as investors search for yield in a low interest rate environment.
That`s because they offer good dividends but these so-called REITs are now
seeing a selloff, even on just a slight move higher in rates.
ALEXANDER GOLDFARB, SANDLER O`NEILL REIT ANALYST: Whenever you have
an interest rate sensitive product and people fear that interest rates are
going up, it`s only natural that, you know, those things like REITs, et
cetera, are going to sell off.
OLICK: Stocks of all equity REITs are down 8 percent in the past
month. They had been outperforming the S&P for the past few years, and
even in the first quarter offered four times the return of the S&P when you
include dividends. And REIT fundamentals are actually very solid right
GOLDFARB: If you go across the different major property types, and
rental apartments, rents are above the long-term averages and in retail —
you know, retails are clamoring for small at malls and shopping centers.
And if you look at what`s happening in office, rents are actually
accelerating in many parts of the country.
OLICK: Vacancy is low, rents rising, and supplies still limited.
Commercial real estate values are up 11 percent in the last year,
apartment, self-storage, lodging and office leading the pack. Names like
Boston Property, Simon, Vornado, they`re seeing a selloff now, but could
ultimately be a buying opportunity.
(on camera): Interestingly, we`re starting to see a wave of REITs
going private, portfolios being bought up by pension funds and sovereign
wealth funds. That`s because they`re earning much more on the buildings
than it cost to finance them, returns upwards of 9 percent. That`s far
more than they`ll get from the U.S. or European bond markets.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Diana Olick in Washington.
GRIFFETH: And to read more about whether or not it is time to get out
of REITs, head to our Web site, NBR.com.
HERERA: Still ahead, the man who helped bring down Swiss banking
secrecy went to jail, only to be paid millions by the IRS. His story in
the first of a three-part series is next.
GRIFFETH: Well, on the heels of Comcast`s failed acquisition of Time
Warner (NYSE:TWX) Cable, all the cable programmers have been gathered at
the Internet and television show to talk about the future of their
industry, and many executives said some things that turned heads.
Julia Boorstin was there.
JULIA BOORSTIN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):
Answering the big question, which deals will come next, Cablevision CEO Jim
Dolan (NYSE:DM) proposed to four other cable CEOs consolidating the New
York market, rather than merging companies with no geographic overlap.
JAMES DOLAN, CABLEVISION CEO: The focus has been for big, large
companies to get together and to, you know, operate that way, that if we
focus on the markets, I think that would bring more to the consumer and I
think would make businesses more valuable.
BOORSTIN (on camera): In response, Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) Cable`s Rob
Marcus (NYSE:MCS) punted, saying he wasn`t sure if he asked out on a date
or to get married. While Charter CEO Tom Rutledge agreed that
consolidating makes sense to achieve efficiency of scale, but not everyone
is on a rush to do a deal.
PAT ESSER, COX COMMUNICATIONS PRESIDENT: Scale never hurts. You
know, as you think about scale, you get synergies if you`re doing M&A. We
talk to a lot of M&A activity, (INAUDIBLE) Jimmy, you just talked about
that a little bit. You get supply chain benefits but even those things
don`t guarantee success. It`s always about execution. And I think we are
the right size for the right opportunities.
BOORSTIN (voice-over): But in light of the growing threat of
consumers cutting the cable cord in favor of the slew of new digital
options, the TV giants here are looking for new technologies to keep
consumers hooked and ways to grow negotiating leverage.
CRAIG MOFFETT: Everybody is trying to keep up with the rise in
programming costs. And that means you need scale. And so, Comcast
(NASDAQ:CMCSA) (NYSE:CCS) is already at 20 million-plus. Direct TV and
AT&T (NYSE:T) combined will be even larger than that. Charter is still in
that smaller than 5 million range and that means they`re going to have to
get bigger if they`re going to keep pace with the programmers that they`re
doing but doing deals with.
BOORSTIN: We`ll see if the relationship between Charter and Time
Warner (NYSE:TWX) Cable get serious.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Julia Boorstin in Chicago.
HERERA: An $8 billion pharmaceutical merger is where we begin
tonight`s “Market Focus.”
Alexion Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALXN) is buying Synageva, paying more
than double the market cap for the firm. Synageva is a maker of rare
disease treatments, expanding Alexion`s offerings into these types of high-
priced medications. Shares of Synageva soared 112 percent to $203.39,
which in essence means it doubled in market value today. Alexion was off 8
percent to $155.01.
GlaxoSmithKline reported revenue that was in line with estimates, but
earnings were short of forecasts. Vaccine and consumer health care were
better than expected, but pharmaceuticals were a drag on profits. Despite
that, the CEO says the drugmaker is well-positioned for the future.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDREW WITTY, GLAXOSMITHKLINE CEO: Every year for the next five years
will be 130 million new babies born. That`s why we want to be the biggest
vaccine company in the world. And there`s also going to be 300 million
people over the next five years who become 50 for the first time. That`s
why we want to have a strong presence in pharmaceuticals and vaccines which
meet the needs of the elderly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERERA: And the shares were a fraction higher to close at $46.02.
Philips 66 hiked its quarterly dividend by 12 percent. The new payout
of 56 cents a share will be paid out in June. The yield is just about
around 2 1/2 percent. Shares were off a fraction to $79.82.
It was a tough day for shares of SodaStream. That company said in its
earnings report that revenue fell 30 percent because of lower demand for
its sparkling waters. Also a stronger U.S. dollar weighed on its results.
Shares tumbled almost 7 percent to $17.83.
GRIFFETH: Still more earnings: Tesla reported a loss that was smaller
than expected in its first quarter. The electric car maker`s deliveries
met expectations. All in all, results did top consensus estimates. Shares
popped initially after the bell. Before the close, though, the stock was
off a percent at $230.43.
Whole Foods delivered earnings that were in-line, but revenue did
miss. Same-store sales also came in below consensus as well. That grocery
store chain said in the report that it is launching a new store concept,
with locations to begin opening sometime next year. Shares dropped after
the bell. During the regular trading session, though, trading was up a
fraction at $47.72.
Also out after the bell tonight, results from 21st Century Fox.
Earnings were much better than expected, but revenue came up short of
estimates by a bit. Sounds familiar. Shares were little changed in
initial after-hours trading. At the close, though, shares were off a few
cents to $33.03.
HERERA: As an American working at UBS in Switzerland, Bradley
Birkenfeld held the keys to dozens of undeclared bank accounts and enough
information to crack open the confidential relationship between Swiss
bankers and U.S. tax evaders. He blew the whistle on the conspiracy. He
went to prison for his part in the scheme. And eventually, he received a
record $104 million from the IRS for coming forward.
He gave his first interview about his roller coaster ride of the past
several years to Eamon Javers, who has the first of a three-part
EAMON JAVERS, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: So, was it worth
it at the end of the day?
BRADLEY BIRKENFELD, WHISTLEBLOWER: Oh, I would do it all over again.
JAVERS: You would do jail again?
BIRKENFELD: Yes, sure.
JAVERS: Lose your career?
JAVERS: $104 million is a lot of money.
BIRKENFELD: It is a lot of money. But having the courage to come
forward and do something historic. No one ever came forward and talked
about Swiss bank secrecy ever.
JAVERS (voice-over): Boston native Bradley Birkenfeld says he became
intrigued by international banking while working in finance in
Massachusetts. But he never expected to become embroiled in the biggest
tax evasion scandal in history.
He moved to Switzerland in 1994 to earn his MBA and settled in Geneva
where he managed to get a job first at Credit Suisse, and then, Barclays,
and finally UBS — one of few Americans allowed into the mysterious world
of Swiss banking.
BIRKENFELD: It was obviously a highly restricted to only people who
worked there. So we had access through secure IDs to get into the floors
that we were working on. It was a very tight work environment.
JAVERS: The way he describes it, the job sounds like part personal
assistant/part spy. Complete with encrypted computers and underground
vaults filled with untold riches.
(on camera): Bars of gold, physical?
BIRKENFELD: Yes, absolutely, more platinum. Very rare coins that
they would put in there, were actual cash, physical cash.
JAVERS (voice-over): And who was hiding these treasure troves?
Birkenfeld says the UBS client list included many of America`s most
powerful and wealthy families.
BIRKENFELD: You had doctors, lawyers, politicians, CEOs, dictators.
JAVERS (on camera): Hollywood?
BIRKENFELD: Hollywood as well. Hollywood stars had accounts there as
JAVERS (voice-over): And Birkenfeld admits there were blatant banking
violations. For example, he claims as a Swiss banker, he was required to
take trips to the United States to meet with clients and hunt for new ones
at extravagant parties and events like Art Basel in Miami.
BIRKENFELD: The problem with this was, was that it was the U.S.
portion of the bank that was actually organizing these events for the U.S.
JAVERS (on camera): You weren`t a licensed banker in the United
BIRKENFELD: We were not SEC-registered, and we were not licensed to
give investment advice. So, that was clearly a violation.
JAVERS (voice-over): And while he says UBS taught bankers to do
business this way, a colleague discovered a hidden internal memo that state
those types of practices were prohibited.
(on camera): The stuff about breaking the law they`re training you
on. And then the memo about how to follow the law is buried in the
BIRKENFELD: That`s right.
JAVERS: And no one trains you on it?
JAVERS (voice-over): A spokeswoman for UBS told us, “The business
described has been closed since July 2008. UBS today is a different firm,
with a different strategic focus and senior management team.”
Still, Birkenfeld showed me the memo that first got his attention.
(on camera): And this is what made you decide to become a
BIRKENFELD: That is correct.
JAVERS: Because you thought they were going to throw you under the
BIRKENFELD: Myself and my colleagues and the clients and the
JAVERS: And so, you threw them under the bus.
BIRKENFELD: That is correct.
JAVERS: Guys, Brad Birkenfeld did end up throwing UBS under the bus.
It costs UBS an enormous amount of money and it also changed the future of
bank secrecy in Switzerland, and you could argue around the world.
Tomorrow night, I`ll tell you how he did that and how he managed to get
rich along the way.
Back to you.
HERERA: I can`t wait, Eamon. Terrific, terrific stuff.
JAVERS: Thank you.
HERERA: Thank you so much.
And to read more about the UBS whistleblower, head to our Web site,
GRIFFETH: Great story.
Coming up, why the first self-driving vehicle you see on the road
might have 18 wheels.
HERERA: Here is what to watch tomorrow. Initial jobless claims will
give us a read on the labor market ahead of Friday`s big jobs report.
And we`ll hear from the Chicago Federal Reserve President Charles
Evans, who will offer his take on economic conditions and monetary policy.
That`s what`s on the agenda for Thursday.
GRIFFETH: In the meantime, California has now officially adopted
those historic water restrictions that were announced last month by
Governor Jerry Brown. State regulators there have approved a plan that
would cut the water used by cities and towns by 25 percent.
HERERA: The Federal Aviation Administration will test commercial
drones that can fly beyond an operator`s line of sight. The agency is
teaming up with drone maker Precision Hawk and BNSF Railway, which will use
those drones to inspect rail infrastructure. The move is scene as a
precursor to some drone operations like package delivery.
GRIFFETH: And finally tonight, from the sky to the roads. One of the
largest manufacturers of the commercial trucks is rolling out a self-
driving semi, believe it or not. Freightliner says that autonomous driver
trucks will be a safer and smarter way to haul goods on the highway.
Phil LeBeau has more tonight.
PHIL LEBEAU, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It
looks like any other semi, but this freightliner truck could revolutionize
the way trucking companies operate. It is a semi autonomous drive truck
that controls steering, acceleration and breaking on a highway, freeing up
truck drivers to do less actual driving.
WOLFGANG BERNHARD: The truck driver is still in charge and he seats
in his seat but he does the monitoring the truck and the traffic, just as
much as a pilot would do that. But the systems basically take over and do
the everyday steering for the many long hours on end in those instructions.
Freightliner`s self-driving semi is licensed in Nevada, the first state to
OK an autonomous self-driving truck.
For other states, allowing these trucks on the highways will take some
time. The primary concern will be safety. Approximately 4,000 people were
killed in trucking related accidents last year and the number of fatalities
is rising, as the economy improves and more goods are hauled on highways.
(on camera): It will likely be several years before we see large
numbers of self-driving semis on American roads. And when it happens,
you`ll still see drivers in the cab, but increasingly, especially on those
long haul routes, the trucks will be driving themselves.
Phil LeBeau, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Atlanta.
GRIFFETH: So, if that`s the case —
HERERA: I`m not sure.
GRIFFETH: — if the trucks drive themselves, are you still called a
driver? I guess the answer to that, you`re a pilot now.
HERERA: You are a pilot. You`re more of — you are a truck pilot.
GRIFFETH: A truck pilot.
HERERA: That`s what you are. Well, we`ll see. I don`t know. I
still think it would kind of freak me out if I drove past and I didn`t see
the guy driving the truck.
GRIFFETH: I`m with you. But hey, it`s technology. It`s the future.
HERERA: It`s the future.
That will do it for NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT. I`m Sue Herera. Thanks
for joining us.
GRIFFETH: I`m Bill Griffeth. Have a great evening, everybody. See
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