Transcript: Nightly Business Report — June 11, 2015

NBR-ThumANNOUNCER: This is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT with Tyler Mathisen and Sue Herera.

TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Taking the bitter with the tweet. The CEO of Twitter is out after months of disappointing growth and growing pressure from investors.

That`s what people did in May as the latest retail sales number shows the all powerful consumer hasn`t forgotten how to spend.

MATHISEN: And nearing retirement. The one investment that some say is better than owning individual stocks.

All that and more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Thursday, June 11th.

EPPERSON: Good evening, everyone. I`m Sharon Epperson.

MATHISEN: And I`m Tyler Mathisen. Good evening from me as well and welcome.

Most stocks rise on strong retail sales, more on that in a moment.
But we begin with late day developments from one of the most talked about social media stocks, Twitter. Call it #youreout. CEO Dick Costolo stepping down. Cofounder Jack Dorsey will come back, take over as interim chief executive.

The change comes after months of pressure from investors and inability to convince Wall Street that the company`s growth strategy was working.
The reaction in the stock market initially was positive, with the shares rising in after hours trading.

Jon Fortt has our story.


JON FORTT, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Twitter CEO Dick Costolo is out and former CEO and executive chairman Jack Dorsey is now in.
It`s just a latest bit of turmoil for a company that`s had a lot of shakeups in management.

Ironically, it`s a year to the day since chief operating officer Ali Rowghani departed from the company, was really pushed out, and raises questions about the future of Twitter, a company that`s been criticized for not communicating as well as it might with Wall Street, about the various metrics that should be used to judge the company`s growth. It`s been compared unfavorably to Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), which has had study growth in its core products and others. It has picked up along the way. And Twitter, of course, just had a difficult report last quarter, with revenue and guidance coming in below expectations.

The question is what happens now under Jack Dorsey? Does he end up sticking around as CEO, even though he`s got another company Square to run and didn`t seem to be interested in the job? Those things have a way of happening. Does Twitter get sold to a suitor like perhaps Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)?

All of those questions and all of those possibilities sending the stock up after hours as investors digested this news of a CEO shakeup and certainly a different path forward for Twitter.



EPPERSON: Now to those retail numbers that Tyler mentioned at the beginning of the broadcast which showed that Americans stepped up their spending in May. Retail sales rose 1.2 percent last month, following a much smaller 0.2 percent gain in April. And when people are willing to spend, that`s typically a sign they feel good about the economy and their own job prospects.

Steve Liesman has more.


The economy looks to be making a comeback as consumers, cocooned for most of the winter, seem to be spreading their wings. Retail sales rose strongly in May, with a surge in car sales and clothing, capping a month of better economic news that shows the economy rebounding decently from the contraction of the first quarter.

ETHAN HARRIS, BOFA MERRILL LYNCH GLOBAL RESEARCH: We`ve had about a month now of better data in the economy. We`ve got a good payroll number recently. We`ve got good housing starts, good auto sales and now the broad retail sales report. You know, it`s been a big mystery o weak in recent months and this kind of takes a step closer to where I think we should be.
The U.S. consumer hasn`t forgotten how to shop.

LIESMAN (on camera): The latest showing economy expanding at an above average, 3.1 percent in the second quarter. The sharp turnaround from the half point contraction in the first.

Low levels of claims for jobless insurance suggest the rosier employment picture should continue this month. Together with better wages, the data paint a picture of an economy with decent momentum, propelled by the previously absent consumer.

LIZ DUNN, TALMAGE ADVISORS FOUNDER AND CEO: I think there are good signs from economy for the back half as it relates to the consumer. The last couple of months, it looked really good in terms of wage inflation and we`re hearing these big companies out there raising wages and I think all of that plays very well for the consumer.

LIESMAN (voice-over): There`s no guarantee the good news will continue. Gas prices have decidedly stopped fallen and some economic rebounds since the Great Recession ended have proven short lived.

But the Federal Reserve reported today that household net worth rose
$1.6 trillion in the first quarter to a new record. There was solid growth in the household stock market portfolios and home values. That`s another reason I think the consumer should be out there spending again in June.



MATHISEN: Those retail sales numbers sent stocks higher early in the day, but then came word of a dramatic end to the meeting between Greece and its creditors. When the International Monetary Fund, also known as the lender of last resort, walked out of those bailout talks and took the wind out of shares.

By the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up just 38 points to 18,039. It had been up as much 109. The NASDAQ finished the day higher by five and the S&P 500 gained three.

Michelle Caruso Cabrera has more now on the new Greek drama.


Today, the International Monetary Fund walked out of Greek debt negotiation, saying the talks are going nowhere. The IMF says it`s now up to the Greeks to come back to the table when they are willing to make some real changes.

This most recent blowup comes after a late night meeting between the Greek leader Alexis Tsipras, the German leader Angela Merkel, and French President Francois Hollande — a meeting which led to nothing, except a commitment to intensify the talks.

Then, today, Tsipras met with the head of the European Commission, Jean Claude Juncker, again, no deal.

The Greeks need the last $7 billion euros in their current bailout program by June 30th if they`re going to be able to pay back the IMF. They also needed to pay government workers and their pensioners. And any deal to get the Greece the cash would have to be approved by various European parliaments.

So, this week it`s critical. A key sticking point in the negotiations
— pensions. The lenders want the Greek government to force people to retire much later. That would lower pension costs. Thus far, though, the changes suggested by Athens aren`t strict enough and don`t take effect soon enough.

If the Greeks don`t get a deal by June 30th, they won`t immediate all their obligations and they`d likely default on the IMF, and they might not be able to pay their workers and their pensioners. Plus, the ECB could cut off credit to the Greek banks, which could, in fact, shut down the entire Greek banking system. That could grind the economy to a halt.

Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.


MATHISEN: The World Bank is joining the IMF in its call for the Federal Reserve to hold off on raising interest rates until next year. The bank said that keeping rates at record lows would help avoid the kind of financial market volatility witnessed during the so-called taper tantrum back in 2013. The World Bank also cut its forecast for U.S. growth this year to 2.7 percent from 3.2 percent.

EPPERSON: The number of Americans who filed new claims for unemployment benefits rose slightly more than expected last week. Despite the rise, the number remains at a level that`s consistent with the strengthening labor market. According to the Labor Department, initial claims increased 2,000 to a seasonably adjusted level of 279,000.

MATHISEN: Change in the Murdoch media empire to tell you about, as first reported by CNBC`s David Faber. Rupert Murdoch is preparing now to step down as chief executive officer of 21st Century Fox. He`ll reportedly hand the title to his son James. Rupert, the elder Murdoch, will stay on as chairman, and his older son Lachlan will take on the role of co- executive chairman.

Rupert controls almost 40 percent of the voting shares at FOX through the Murdoch family trust. Shares of 21st Century Fox a fraction, as you see there.

EPPERSON: A massive train derailment and tanker car explosion back in
2013 hit a small town in Quebec very hard. Now, according to multiple reports, some big oil companies have contributed $345 million toward a fund to compensate victims of that disaster. The creation of the fund is not common, but there`s a reason why the energy companies are doing it.

Morgan Brennan has more.


MORGAN BRENNAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: It`s been almost two years since 47 people died in northeastern Canada. The result of a fiery derailment involving a train moving highly volatile crude oil from North Dakota`s Bakken shale formation. Now, energy companies hoping to avoid expensive and lengthy litigation have agreed to pay into a $345 million fund for victims of the accident in Lac-Megantic.

“The Wall Street Journal” reports Royal Dutch Shell, Marathon Oil
(NYSE:MRO) and ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) and others have already contributed tens of millions of dollars. Train derailments are usually blamed on the railroad carrier. In this case, Montreal Maine & Atlantic Railway.

Following the accident, the company sought bankruptcy protection.
Now, if the fund is approved by U.S. and Canadian courts, the energy companies will be shielded from a number of lawsuits claiming wrongful death and negligence.

According to the report, Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO), based in Houston, said a decision to contribute did not constitute an acknowledgement of liability and other companies involved have said their responsibility ended once the crude was pumped out of the ground and properly labeled.

DONALD BROUGHTON, AVONDALE PARTNERS: You have some companies who are trying to preempt, eliminate additional liability at a later date. And they think they`ll be positively viewed if they can go back and say, look, we long ago make contributions to help these victims of this horrible accident.

BRENNAN: Nearly 1 million barrels of oil are loaded on to trains each day in North America. Even with the drop in crude carloads caused by lower oil prices. That`s up from almost none before 2009.

Since the accident in Canada, there has been almost a dozen others involving North Dakota crude, which is highly flammable, although none caused any fatalities. Railroads are usually targeted in derailment cases, but some U.S. officials have complained that companies could be doing more to make their oil safer by stripping out volatile gases before loading it unto trains.

(on camera): It all sets the stage for what could become the next legal and regulatory battleground for crude by rail, one that would require more safeguards on the product itself and holds not just railroads by energy companies responsible as well.



MATHISEN: The IRS wants to fight tax-regulated fraud and protect taxpayers and today, the agency confirmed what many had expected. The agency will work alongside private tax preparation and software firms to share information and tighten security.


JOHN KOSKINEN, IRS COMMISSIONER: The critical thing for taxpayers to know is that new protections will be in place by the time they have to file their taxes in 2016. Each of us will be making substantive changes through the summer and the fall to be ready for the next tax season.


MATHISEN: And this IRS matter isn`t the only business related issue on Washington`s agenda today. There`s also trade and re-authorization of Export-Import Bank.

And Eamon Javers joins us now from Washington.

But let`s start with the IRS, Eamon. What are some of the protections the IRS is going for here?


This is all about protecting individual taxpayers. And as you say, the IRS is calling this a new era of cooperation between the U.S.
government and tax preparers and also software firms that help individual taxpayers file their taxes. What they say is they`re doing a whole new series of technical items in order to help insure that IRS knows that this tax return is coming in. It`s actually a real tax return represented by a real taxpayer out there in the universe. It`s all about plugging some of the wholes that allowed for that massive hack attack against the IRS that we saw, using the IRS`s own Web site, Tyler.

EPPERSON: Eamon, there`s also this big trade vote in the House that`s scheduled for tomorrow. And actually, President Obama seems to be on the same side as the GOP. What can we expect there?

JAVERS: Well, we expect it`s going to be close. This is the Trade Promotion Authority vote that we`re expecting in the House tomorrow. It said to be close up there. There`s a lot of cross cutting politics right now. Unions are making a push against the trade adjustment agreement that might come to the vote before the TPA vote tomorrow.

But ultimately, this is likely to pass. But talk to me this time tomorrow and we`ll see where we stand, because those trade deals become increasingly controversial here in Washington, with a lot of people saying that they`re killing American jobs and exporting jobs overseas.

MATHISEN: Trade makes strange bedfellows of politicians, doesn`t it, Eamon?


MATHISEN: Let`s talk about the Export-Import Bank. Another controversial one, the charter expires at the end of the month, as the Senate expected to move on it.

JAVERS: Yes, the Senate is expected to move on it. Critics there called the Export-Import bank crony capitalism. There`s at least a chance for the first time in the 81-year history of the Export-Import Bank, they might let its charter expire. But the betting is that this has enough votes based on the action in the Senate that`s gone on this week, that they do have enough votes to reinstate the Export-Import Bank.

That, of course, benefits big American companies like Boeing (NYSE:BA) by extending loan guarantees to foreign customers who are buying American exports. So that`s an important one for a lot of big companies, Boeing
(NYSE:BA) and Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) including.

MATHISEN: All right. Eamon Javers in Washington, thank you.

JAVERS: You bet.

EPPERSON: Still ahead, why soon to be retirees are piling into one type of investment, but do the risk outweighs the rewards?


MATHISEN: Hold onto your wallet, folks. Proposed rates for health insurance premiums on some 2016 exchange plans are going to rise an average of almost 6 percent. This according to a study by the research firm Avalere Health, looked at seven states and the District of Columbia and focused on the silver plans, the mid-grade, basically.

The study said the average silver plans monthly premium proposed for
2016 was $448 compared with $423 this year.

EPPERSON: Tyler, mortgage rates hit highs for the year this week as bond yields climb. The latest data released by Freddie Mac shows the rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage is now a little above 4 percent. Since late April, the 30-year fixed rate has risen 39 basis points.

MATHISEN: Well, let`s call this the rise of the zombies. These are homes that are in foreclosure, one way or another. But the bank hasn`t repossessed it and the homeowner gone. Even as the housing market recovers, the number of these zombies is rising in some market.

Diana Olick explains.


DIANA OLICK, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: There are no zombies living in these houses, quite the opposite. They`re empty, which is why they`ve been dubbed zombies themselves. Thousands of homes in the foreclosure process, but not yet repossessed by now. Now, as home prices rise, banks are seeing dollar signs. They`re speeding up all foreclosures an actually creating more zombies in high price markets.

DAREN BLOMQUIST, REALTYTRAC: Now, finally, the bank is coming back with all their ducks in the row, the proper documentation. And the homeowner is seeing the writing on the wall that I`m going to have to leave and move on with my life.

OLICK: So, while the overall foreclosure crisis has improved dramatically, the number of zombies is increasing in markets like New York, L.A., Houston, Philadelphia and Boston. We looked at some of these zombies in D.C. and in Teaneck, New Jersey. Home after home, with estimated current values really quite high, some at over half a million dollars. So, once these homes clear the foreclosure process, they could present great deals for first time buyers, as well as investors and flippers. That is welcome news to neighbors.

ARIEL SEELEY, HOMEOWNER: We would love to have people move in and occupy the houses. It makes it seem a little unsafe or a little dreary when you`re walking by and you see vacant signs and you don`t know, you know, what`s going on with the houses.

OLICK (on camera): But like everything else in real estate, it`s all local. While some zombies are finding owners sold again, others are not moving at all because the neighborhood just hasn`t recovered yet.

GEOFF SMITH, HOUSING STUDIES: There`s a legacy of the foreclosure crisis that will be impacting certain neighborhoods for a very long period of time.

OLICK (voice-over): Nationwide though, bank reposessions are ramping up, now at a nearly two-year high. The zombie apocalypse once again thwarted.

For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Diana Olick in Washington.


MATHISEN: To read more about the zombie foreclosures, head to our Web site,

EPPERSON: The feud between Lululemon and its funder may be over soon.
And that`s where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus”.

The athletic apparel maker filed for Chip Wilson to sell his family`s stake in the company. The sale could total 20-million shares, a 14 percent stake worth about $1.3 billion. The founder, who has fought with the board over its strategies, reportedly is weighing the option. Shares were off 1 percent to $66.07.

The activist hedge fund Elliot Management has disclosed a seven percent stake in Citrix, which is best known for its Go-To-Meeting service.
The firm wants to work with the company on improving operations, while also selling or spinning off corporate assets. Shares popped almost 7 percent to over $70, $70.39.

The chipmaker Integrated Silicon Solutions has struck a deal to be bought by China`s Uphill Investments. This comes a day after it agreed to be bought by Cypress Semiconductor (NASDAQ:CY). The latest move in the bidding war values the firm at nearly $700 million. Shares of Integrated Silicon were 5 percent higher to $21.36. Cypress was off slightly to close at $13.06.

MATHISEN: Shares of Axovant surged after the company said its initial public offering raised $315 million. That`s the largest amount ever raised by a biotech company, going public. The firm preparing to start late-stage testing of a Alzheimer`s disease drug treatment. Shares doubled. They closed at $29.90.

And European regulators taking aim at Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and General Electric (NYSE:GE) — separate aim. The European Commission has filed a formal probe into Amazon`s e-book business, to investigate whether the retailer used its dominant position in the market to favor its own products over rivals.

Separately, European regulators are set to say that General Electric`s deal to buy the energy unit of France`s Alstom could harm competition, according to a Reuters report. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) up a fraction to $432.97. General Electric (NYSE:GE) went the other way, falling by about
12 cents to $27.51.

And we just want to draw your attention to a move in Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY). The pharmaceutical giant jumped in today`s trading, but there doesn`t seem to be any significant news causing the move. The shares popped to a 14-year high. They closed 4 percent higher on no news, at $86.59.

EPPERSON: Investors who are nearing retirement are looking for income and many are turning to multi-asset ETFs for their diversified exposure to stocks, bonds, commodities and even risky high yield areas like real estate investment trust. But are these types of ETFs for everyone and should they be in your portfolio?

David Blanchett is the head of retirement research at Morningstar
(NASDAQ:MORN) and he joins us now.

David, thank you for being here.

Let me start by asking you about these multi-asset ETFs. Exactly what are they are? What are the pros and cons of them?

DAVID BLANCHETT, MORNINGSTAR HEAD OF RETIREMENT RESEARCH: Well, multi-asset ETF is an ETF or exchange rated fund that has different assets.
It has a combination of stocks and bonds and real estate, versus the more traditional ETFs, or just a single stock or single bond index.

EPPERSON: And you say that most investors may be better off choosing these multi-asset ETFs than individual stocks. Why would that be?

BLANCHETT: You know, individual investors buying single stocks worries me because those people aren`t great at timing the market or picking great investments. So, if you go with one of these multi-asset ETFs, you`re buying a prepackaged solution created by investment professionals. It`s an easy one off way to get exposure to different types of markets.

MATHISEN: But how do they compare for example with a plain vanilla balance fund that has some stocks and some equities in it, or a target date fund that basically does the same thing?

BLANCHETT: So, I mean, I think it depends on your goal. I think that, you know, one place we`ve seen a lot of growth in the multi-asset ETF space is in come ETFs. And these are ETFs that are focused on creating income. So, they combine different high yield asset classes like high yield bonds, infrastructure, commodities, preferred stocks, and do a single option for retirees.

EPPERSON: What do investors need to know about any of the volatility in these ETFs and the multi-asset ETFs? Some of them don`t have a lot of assets them. They have grown as a growth. But some of the individual names may not be ones that have a lot of liquidity.

Is that a concern?

BLANCHETT: It is. I mean, the multi-asset ETF space is very small.
It`s only about 0.4 percent of the total assets in ETFs today. And I think that if you look at the difference in these ETFs, there`s a huge dispersion. I mean, so are almost all bond, like some are all stock.
Within that, there`s some big difference as well.

MATHISEN: What`s your track record, David?

BLANCHETT: Well, so, it`s a relatively new space. You know, the average multi-asset ETFs, for three years. So, there really isn`t a lot of history there. Now, those are based upon indexes, it may have 10-year histories. And the problem with histories though, it`s been back-tested.
It`s not actual history of the ETFs.

MATHISEN: But for the three-year period, what kind of returns have they delivering to investors?

BLANCHETT: It varies significantly. I think that the one thing they have been good at is creating income. You`ve got yields on some of these as high as 6 percent. But if you`re an income-focused investor, that`s a lot more than you can get to buying bonds.

EPPERSON: That is certainly a lot of income for a lot of folks out there, who need it very badly right now.

David Blanchett, thank you very much, with Morningstar (NASDAQ:MORN).

BLANCHETT: Thanks for having me.

MATHISEN: You bet.

Coming up, can a one make, one model car rental startup take a headache out of renting a car.


EPPERSON: Here`s what to watch tomorrow. The Producer Price Index, an important inflation indicator, is out. Also a report on consumer sentiment, and that`s what to watch Friday.

MATHISEN: Boeing (NYSE:BA) hiked its 20-year forecast for aircraft demand, saying 40 percent of new jets will feed Asia`s travel boom. But the plane maker shaved its prediction for annual airline traffic growth because of falling oil prices. Still, shares were up at Boeing (NYSE:BA) today by about 1 percent at $142.96.

EPPERSON: Good news for the flyers out there, too. The Department of Transportation`s latest airline card report shows that more flights were on time and fewer were cancelled in April. The best carriers for on-time arrivals were Hawaiian (NASDAQ:HA), Alaskan and Delta. The worst were Frontier, Spirit, and the regional carrier, Envoy.

MATHISEN: Well, if you`re like many people, renting a car can sometimes be a trying experience, long waits, mistakes with vehicles being reserved. There are common complaints. Now, a new company is trying a new approach to renting cars.

And Phil LeBeau has the story of Silvercar.


Stephen Richardson travels more than 300 days a year. After repeated problems getting vehicles or feeling nickel and dimed by rental car companies, Richardson hit his breaking point.

It was painful. I would actually go out of my way to try and find public transportation or other rides, just so that I wouldn`t have to rent from the big rental companies.

LEBEAU: Richardson no longer rents from Hertz, Avis or Enterprise.
Instead, he rents from Silvercar, an Austin, Texas, start-up founded three years ago by Luke Schneider.

LUKE SCHNEIDER, SILVERCAR CEO: We thought we could take a page from some pretty successful travel companies, and create a company with a very simple model, a single make and model of car, and an entirely mobile user experience.

LEBEAU: Silvercar rents only silver Audi A4s. Using a mobile app, customers make reservations to get a car. Either at a spot just outside the airport or in some locations, Silvercar picks you up at the curb. The
goal: get you in a car quickly with no surprises.

SCHNEIDER: There`s always consistency. You`re only going to get one kind of car. It`s a great car every time.

LEBEAU: While there are plenty of complaints about established rental car companies, breaking their dominance won`t be easy. Many travelers have to use them because of corporate accounts. And their locations at airports are convenient, making it tougher for start-ups.

BRIAN JOHNSON, BARCLAYS: What I like at Silvercar, the biggest hurdle beyond getting just run out there, is going to be convincing people to take their way to the Silvercar lots versus the buses they`re used to.

LEBEAU: For Stephen Richardson, Silvercar is the silver lining to his rental car nightmares.

RICHARDSON: I like the idea that I know the car I`m going to get.
It`s the same care consistently every time.

LEBEAU (on camera): These Audis here at Silvercar`s latest location near O`Hare airport means the start-up company has set up operations at ten airports around the country, with plans to add two or three more before the end of the year. As Silvercar tries to redefine the way America rents cars.



MATHISEN: It might be worth a try.

EPPERSON: I would definitely want to try it.

MATHISEN: It might be worth a try.

EPPERSON: Definitely. I like those silver cars.

Well, that`s NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for tonight. I`m Sharon Epperson. Thanks so much for watching.

MATHISEN: And I`m Tyler Mathisen. Have a great evening, everybody.
We hope to see you right back here tomorrow night.


Nightly Business Report transcripts and video are available on-line post broadcast at The program is transcribed by CQRC Transcriptions, LLC. Updates may be posted at a later date. The views of our guests and commentators are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Nightly Business Report, or CNBC, Inc. Information presented on Nightly Business Report is not and should not be considered as investment advice. (c) 2015 CNBC, Inc.

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