TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Tech tankers. Two of the
biggest technology names turn in disappointing results and investors react
sharply. We have the details on two stocks that are probably in your
portfolio or mutual funds.
SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Rental return. Why the rental
counter is no longer the top choice of business travelers.
MATHISEN: State of pain. How low oil prices are hurting many local
economies and how they`re fighting pack. Tonight, we take you to one of
the biggest oil states of them all, Alaska.
All that and more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Thursday, April
HERERA: Good evening, everyone, and welcome.
Two of the most widely held, if not the most widely held, stocks —
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Google`s parent Alphabet — came out with
quarterly results after the bell and investors were not pleased.
Let`s start with Dow component Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT). The world`s
largest software company in the middle of a transition to become more of a
cloud company missed on its latest earnings report. Microsoft
(NASDAQ:MSFT) earned 62 cents a share. That was 2 cents shy of estimates.
Revenue was essentially in line at a shade over $22 billion. Shares
initially fell more than 3 percent after the release.
Deirdre Bosa is in Redmond, Washington, with the thing investors should be
DEIRDRE BOSA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: For Microsoft
(NASDAQ:MSFT), it`s all about the rising cloud which has helped transition
the company into a new era of technology faster than many had anticipated.
But while cloud business is booming, it may not be enough to make up for a
declining PC market which hit Microsoft`s bottom line in the previous
quarter through sales of its Windows operating system.
As for devices, diverging fortunes. Surface sales were up sharply while
phone sales continue to free fall.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Deirdre Bosa at Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
MATHISEN: And now to Google`s parent, the company known as Alphabet. The
company`s profit and revenue both grew but that still wasn`t enough to
please Wall Street. Alphabet`s earnings rose 16 percent to an adjusted
7.50 a share, but the street was looking for 47 cents more. Revenue was up
17 percent to more than $20 billion but that too fell short of
expectations. Picky, picky, picky.
As a result, shares initially fell 5 percent after hours.
Josh Lipton has the main takeaway.
JOSH LIPTON, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Sixteen-point-five
billion dollars. That was Google`s net revenue number, meaning gross
revenue minus commissions paid to partners. That is down 5 percent
sequentially. In fact, the biggest sequential decline we have seen from Q4
to Q1 in several years and the street was modeling $16.6 billion.
So, it also disappointed analysts. Neil Doshi of Mizuho Securities says
it`s important because it implies that perhaps Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is
paying more money to its partners, and that could be ultimately margin
dilutive. Still, Doshi is an Alphabet bull, as are 92 percent of analysts
covering this stock.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Josh Lipton in San Francisco.
HERERA: Kevin Landis owns Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) shares and he joins us now
to talk more about the earnings report and what the antitrust issues the
company is facing from the European Union might mean. He is founder and
chief investment officer at Firsthand Capital Management.
Good to see you, Kevin. Welcome.
KEVIN LANDIS, FIRSTHAND CAPITAL MANAGEMENT CIO: Thank you very much. Good
to see you, too.
HERERA: What did you think of the report itself? The street is punishing
the stock for it. But there seemed to be some decent numbers in there in
LANDIS: Absolutely. I think it`s just the lesson is that once you`re a
big successful company, your success gets so big, your numbers get so big,
they can`t beat expectations every time. Your growth rate`s going to fall
because you`re going to start to saturate the market and your market`s
going to mature and the market itself is going to grow more slowly.
Those are all normal things, they`re not necessarily bad things. But
sometimes they feel bad while they`re happening.
MATHISEN: You know, most companies, Kevin, would love 17 percent revenue
growth year over year, they`d die for it.
MATHISEN: Ditto that kind of profit growth. So, where can — how can the
company continue to grow at those numbers?
LANDIS: Well, I`m with you, most people would love it. If you want to
feel better about Alphabet, consider the old media companies out there and
sort of their falling cable viewership and falling ad rates and all that.
One way to look at this company is it`s absolutely on the right side of the
cord-cutting phenomenon and people are watching less linear TV, less
through their cable, more on their tablets and smartphones and that`s
mobile and that should accrue to Alphabet or Google`s benefit.
All you can do is conquer the world that`s in front of you and they`re
doing a very good job of that. As for managing expectations, that`s Ruth
Porat`s job and I`m sure she`s going to take a good cut at it this
afternoon, and try to get people to understand that the best they can do is
conquer the whole world.
HERERA: Uh-huh. Speaking of the whole world, let`s turn you to Europe and
the European Union and some of the antitrust concerns that are there. How
big of a headwind is this going to be for the company, if at all, how do
you think it will play out?
LANDIS: Right. Again, this is the issue of bumping your head on the
ceiling when you`ve outgrown your opportunities. Antitrust happens to
successful companies, not to losers. It`s going to be a headache. And it
really depends on what area they`re looking at.
You know, if it`s in search, I guess that`s good for people like Yahoo
(NASDAQ:YHOO) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) who can
kind of force them to take their market share down late bit. It depends on
exactly the nature of the antitrust allegations, which part of the business
they really focus on.
MATHISEN: It`s a funny case. I mean, I remember going back into the `90s
with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT). The real charge was that Microsoft
(NASDAQ:MSFT) then, as in the case of Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) or Alphabet
today, was taking advantage of their dominant operating system position, in
this case Android, to favor other products of theirs that are in their
suite — Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Maps in this case, Google (NASDAQ:GOOG)
But why shouldn`t they be able to? Are they going to favor somebody else?
LANDIS: Right, well, this is what the default value, right, the default
settings. Turns out what are you nudging people towards? That`s a
powerful contest, how you nudge people.
It`s great for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), by the way. You know, already, Apple
(NASDAQ:AAPL) bigots and I`m a little bit of an Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) bigot
myself, will tell you that the Android side is a little too fragmented and
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is just wonderful, beautiful, walled garden, everything
works great. This might force the Android side to be even more fragmented.
And that`s going to accrue to Apple`s benefit.
It`s a headache that comes with success. And there`s really to getting
HERERA: Right. On that note we`ll leave it there, Kevin, always good to
have you on the program. Thank you for joining us. Kevin Landis with
Firsthand Capital Management.
MATHISEN: And on Wall Street today, the telecom sector was the biggest
weight following earnings disappointments. As a result, stocks mostly
The Dow shed 113 points to 17,982. Verizon (NYSE:VZ) and Travelers
accounted for half that drop. More on that later. NASDAQ lost a big 2
points. The S&P 500 dropped about 11.
HERERA: As for the economy, some data out giving us kind of a mixed
picture. First, the Philadelphia Fed`s manufacturing index turned negative
for April. That suggests retail contraction in that sector.
But on the labor front, the number of Americans filing for first-time
unemployment claims last week fell to the lowest level in nearly 43 years.
Initial claims dropped to 247,000, that`s a mark not seen since November of
1973. Anything below 300,000 is considered a healthy job market and we`ve
been below that mark for 59 straight weeks.
MATHISEN: And let`s bring in our next guest. The Federal Reserve meets
next week to discuss the economy and interest rates as you may well know.
And Kevin Logan, chief economist at HSBC, is here to tells us why he thinks
two rate hikes are probable this year.
All right. Go ahead, answer the question. Why do you think two and when?
KEVIN LOGAN, HSBC CHIEF ECONOMIST: Well, it`s probably June and December.
I think the FOMC wants to space out at lengthy intervals rate hikes it`s
going to implement this year.
The FOMC sent a signal in march they`re unlikely to raise rates this month.
They noted that global economic and financial market developments pose the
risks. And as soon as those rates abate we`re not going to get a rate
hike, so April is pretty much off the table.
But I`m thinking into the future. Things are likely to improve a bit.
There are already some signs of that. Some of the turmoil in financial
markets that we saw a few months ago has started to abate. Credit spreads,
particularly in the high-yield sector, have come in. Stock marks
And the news out of China, which was so worrisome early in the year, has
improved. I think the Fed wants to give it just a little more time before
they make any moves.
HERERA: On the other hand, we still have a strong dollar which the Fed has
cited as one reason why they might not be able to raise rates. And we have
the British vote on whether to stay in the E.U. looming large, which could
benefit the U.S. dollar if they company vote to leave the E.U.
Does that change the dynamic for the Fed at all?
LOGAN: Well, certainly, the Fed is watching the dollar. And the dollar
has depreciated a little bit. It`s no longer appreciating. And very
particularly the Chinese currency, which was declining, has stabilized.
And so, the foreign exchange market has calmed down and the dollar`s come
off a bit. But, Sue, you`re right to point that out, import prices are
still falling and that`s a concern for the Fed.
But as for the referendum in the United Kingdom regarding their association
with the European Union, I don`t think that`s going to be a big factor.
MATHISEN: All right.
LOGAN: The Fed will really be focusing on U.S. domestic economic and
MATHISEN: Boy, those unemployment claim numbers were very, very good
Kevin Logan, we have to leave it there. Thank you very much, Kevin is with
HERERA: Regulators propose new rules aimed at dealing with risk and how
the nation`s biggest banks pay executives, primarily their bonuses. The
biggest takeaways would be holding back that bonus for four years and
allowing banks to recover or claw back bonuses if an executive`s actions
are deemed fraudulent or guilty of misconduct. And that could be as much
as seven years.
MATHISEN: The financial group is one of the biggest sectors of the S&P 500
but it is also the worst-performing one so far this year. Despite one of
the biggest turnarounds since the market bottomed back in February.
In today`s sector spotlight, Susan Li crunch the numbers and tells us names
that could do the best and worst in the months ahead.
SUSAN LI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: The financial sector`s
off to a rough start in 2016, the worst-performing sector of the S&P. And
that`s despite a rebound since the middle of February.
As we head deeper into the second quarter of the year from March to June,
keep in mind this time of year has traditionally been strong for financials
since they tend to outperform the overall stock market. Wells Fargo
(NYSE:WFC) is a name that usually trades higher during this period,
typically gaining 3 percent, and trading up two-thirds of the time.
On the other hand, among the big names, Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) that is
struggled most in the second quarter, falling over 3 percent. Since
financials are the weak spot in the market this year, so far this year,
some might be thinking of the adage, sell in May and go away, or you might
be missing out on money-making trades, according to CLSA`s banking analyst,
MIKE MAYO, CLSA MANAGING DIRECTOR: Typically, by Valentine`s Day in the
first quarter, capital market activity is robust. That wasn`t the case in
the first quarter but you might see a degree of pent-up demand. So, maybe
Valentine`s Day comes late.
In the summer when normally you`d be selling the stocks, you could see
better capital markets activity, which would be good for a lot of the Wall
Street financial players.
LI: The best names to play May to October going back 15 years? Blackrock
has averaged 6 percent returns. One name that has had a tough time during
those months, AIG, which has fallen 17 percent in that time period. This
summer could be a bit different, some economists predicting an interest
rate increase from the Federal Reserve, the first in the summer in more
than ten years.
Typically, when interest rates go up, that`s when banks can make more
money, by charging more interest on their loans. And, yes, financials do
traditionally outperform the broader markets when we`re three months away
from an increase in borrowing rates. Goldman, JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), Wells
Fargo (NYSE:WFC), Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), they all tend to beat the S&P
three months from a Fed move. Citigroup (NYSE:C) and AIG tend to
As you see not all financials are made equal. It`s always buyer beware in
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Susan Li.
HERERA: Coming up, we`ve all heard about the taxi industry getting eroded
by the rise of ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft. Well, now, another
traditional business has customers shifting their habits. We`ll tell you
MATHISEN: Following up on a story we brought you last night, after months
of negotiations Volkswagen and U.S. regulators have reached an agreement on
how to deal with more than a half million diesel cars that put out too much
pollution. Thousands of VW owners are likely to get several thousand
dollars as compensation but exactly how much and how still needs to be
Phil LeBeau has more.
PHIL LEBEAU, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Seven months after
Volkswagen admitted to rigging the engines of diesel models so they
appeared to meet emission standards, when in fact they were breaking
pollution laws, the automaker has agreed to a plan for compensating the
owners of those models. Among the options for VW owners, having their cars
bought back, getting them fixed and receiving payment from VW, or being let
out of their lease.
But exactly how much money VW owners will be offered or how long it will
take to fix their cars remains unclear. A federal judge wants those
details finalized by mid-June and they still need to be approved by EPA.
For VW dealers, this settlement is a step towards moving past the scandal
that has rocked their business. Since September of last year, VW sales in
the U.S. are down. While nearly every other auto brand is up. And overall
sales in the U.S. are close to a record high.
It`s estimated this agreement will wind up costing Volkswagen at least $3
billion. But this scandal is still far from over. There`s still a
Department of Justice investigation and the possibility of a multi-billion
Phil LeBeau, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Chicago.
HERERA: Profit at General Motors (NYSE:GM) doubled last quarter. And
that`s where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus.”
The automaker cited strong truck and SUV sales in North America, as well as
stronger European sales as the main drivers of growth. GM also noted it
took a charge over its recent labor agreement with the United Auto Workers
union. Shares of the automaker up over 1 percent to $32.66.
Dow component Visa (NYSE:V) reporting after the bell today, where it gave
slightly lower guidance for the year. The company did beat analyst
expectations for both profit and revenue this past quarter. But it said it
continues to face issues with the strong U.S. dollar and uneven spending in
the global economy. Shares of the company closed slightly lower during the
trading day to $80.79 and then initially traded even lower during after-
Insurance company Travelers` quarterly profit fell 17 percent. The company
cited the violent storms this past month in Texas which caused millions of
dollars in damages to cars, homes and businesses as the main driver for
that drop. Shares of the insurer fell over 6 percent today to $108.79.
And telecom giant Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is warning that growth for the rest of
2016 may be stagnant. The company cited ongoing labor disputes as well as
increased pricing competition in the wireless business as continuing
concerns. Verizon (NYSE:VZ) shares dropping over 3 percent today to
MATHISEN: Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV), the fort-largest U.S. carrier,
saw its profits soar 13 percent last quarter as the company benefited from
the lower cost of fuel. The company also in the middle of modernizing its
fleet with newer, more fuel-efficient planes. Shares of the airline up
more than 1 percent on the day to $47.73.
Steph Curry not only helping the Golden State Warriors have an historic
season, he`s also partly responsible for Under Armour`s strong quarter.
The athletic apparel company cited a 64 percent jump in its footwear
business this past quarter due in part to strong sales of Steph Curry
branded sneakers. The ones my son Macky is dying for. Shares of the
company hit the equivalent of two three-pointers today, up about 6 percent
The coffee giant Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) offered up a weak cup of brew in
its quarterly earnings today. Profits hit the estimate of 39 cents a share
but revenues fell a bean or two short. And the company`s forecast for the
current quarter was more a blond brew than a Robusta. Mobile orders are
hot spot though. Yes, I said that, Sue. Running at $8 million a month and
growing. The stock ended the day at $60.64. But dripped lower in after-
HERERA: Oh, stop.
MATHISEN: And, finally, done deal. Viacom (NYSE:VIA) will be doing the
dishes. Dish Network, that is. The two companies reached agreement so
that Viacom (NYSE:VIA) channels like Nickelodeon will air on Dish and Sling
TV. Shares of Viacom (NYSE:VIA) up on the day as you see there. And so
were Dish network.
HERERA: I think you`ve had too much Robusta.
Uber and Lyft are at it again. This time, it`s taking business away from
the car rental industry. According to the expense management company
Certify, the ride-sharing companies account for 43 percent of receipts that
workers gave to employers for ground transportation last quarter, while
rental cars only had 40 percent.
Joining us now to discuss the shakeup in this industry is Bob Neveu. He`s
CEO and founder with Certify.
Bob, welcome. Nice to have you here.
BOB NEVEU, CERTIFY CEO & FOUNDER: Hi. Thanks for having me on the show.
HERERA: You know — kind of quantify the impact that these types of
services are having. Has it been a steady erosion? Or have we seen it
really pick up recently?
NEVEU: It has been a steady sort of gradual increase in market share for
Uber and Lyft in the ride-handling environment.
We do this report every quarter. Over the last five quarters we`ve seen a
consistent increase in market share where Uber and Lyft have overtaken the
taxi industry first, and then two quarters ago we saw them starting to
outpace the auto rental industry in specific markets in Q1 of 2016, we see
them outpacing auto rentals in all markets.
MATHISEN: Is this by revenue, Bob? Or is this by sort of transactions?
NEVEU: Yes, that`s a great question. So it`s by transactions. We
processed over 9.5 million transactions in our expense engine from all
these various business travelers this past quarter.
And really probably the best way to think about it is in the ground
transportation segment, Uber and ride-sharing is the most popular of all
providers. They continue to grab more transactions, they continue to be
used, I think for a number of reasons, but the business community is
certainly adopting, readily adopting a rapidly increase their use of ride-
HERERA: Well, you know, part of it probably is convenience. It takes
awhile to rent a car. You have to either stand in line or maybe if you`re
a gold member, it`s a little easier. But the quality of the experience may
be better with Uber and Lyft. And the convenience factor for business
travelers is pretty big.
NEVEU: Yes, I think that`s right. You consider renting a car and most —
in major metro markets, most of the car rental locations at airports are
not at the airport, they`re off-site. So, you`re in a shuttle, you`re on
mono rail, you`re getting there, you`re getting your car.
When you bring the car back you have to fuel it up, return it, hopefully,
you had 15, 20 minutes for the drop-off scenario. Whereas taking a ride-
handling service gets you to your location, gets you back to your airport,
and you can be productive and enjoy the ride, maybe even a bottle of water.
MATHISEN: I did this on a recent trip that I took to Seattle, exactly what
you describe. There is one hitch, though. In a lot of cities, Uber is not
certified to use your company name to pick up at airports. They`ve got to
NEVEU: They do and I think from a regulatory perspective, when you come
into a market that allows for airport pickup and drop-off by ride-hailing,
it`s a much different experience even at the taxi line. She taxi, should I
It is challenging in marketplaces that have not adopted the service for
HERERA: All right. Thank you so much for joining us, we appreciate it.
I`m jealous. It looks beautiful in San Diego today.
NEVEU: It`s been great.
HERERA: Bob Neveu with Certify.
MATHISEN: Usually, it`s beautiful out there as you well know, Sue.
MATHISEN: Up next, how one heavily oil reliant state is open hoping to
relieve the pressure from low crude prices.
MATHISEN: Low oil prices may be great when you`re filling your car but
they`re creating intense pain in states that depend on oil. And nowhere is
that more the case than in Alaska where crude is the state`s lifeblood.
Scott Cohn is in Juneau with a look at what the state`s doing to cope.
SCOTT COHN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: When Sarah Palin was
governor the Alaska, it was practically a no-brainer —
SARAH PALIN (R), FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR: The chant is drill, baby, drill.
COHN: With Alaskan oil at more than $120 a barrel back then, the state was
sitting on a liquid gold mine. But for the current governor, Bill Walker,
things are a lot more complicated.
GOV. BILL WALKER (I), ALASKA: With the price of oil coming down, there`s
no shock absorber for that. So it`s very dramatic.
COHN: Prices have fallen roughly 70 percent from their peak. Producing
oil in Alaska is a money-losing proposition.
KARA MORIARTY, ALASKA GOIL AND GAS ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT & CEO: The
average cost to produce a barrel of oil, before we pay any tax, whether
it`s to the federal government or to the state government, is about $52 a
COHN: Oil companies are cutting jobs and production. The Trans Alaska
pipeline is running at one-quarter of its capacity. Just keeping the oil
flowing at this rate, without the line freezing, is an engineering feat.
BETSY HAINES, ALYESKA PIPELINE ENGINEERING DIRECTOR: I have woken up
worried about kind of the future in and the transatlantic pipeline system,
because again, it`s not just technical, it`s economic.
COHN: All this in a state that has relied on oil for as much as 90 percent
of state revenues and one-third of all jobs.
Alaskans have seen low oil prices before. In fact, they`ve gone lower than
this and always bounced back. But there`s a growing fear that this time is
different and that this is a new normal.
Not only is demand down, Alaska faces new competition from shale oil. So,
with the state facing a $4 billion budget gap and the legislative session
going into overtime, the governor has proposed a sweeping plan to make the
state less reliant on oil.
WALKER: It won`t decouple but it will go from 90 percent dependent to 21
COHN: It would use earnings from Alaska`s accumulated oil well, the $50
billion so-called permanent fund. There are also widespread spending cuts,
worrying the head of the state`s largest school system.
ED GRAFF, ANCHORAGE SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT: We`re at a point this year
we`re going to have to make reductions that will have direct impact to the
COHN: There are proposed tax increases for the oil industry and maybe the
important commercial fishing industry.
JERRY MCCUNE, UNITED FISHERMAN OF ALASKA PRESIDENT: You see down the
harbor here, every boat is a small business, we`ve got to keep every one of
those small businesses going.
COHN: Individuals would feel it too. The governor is proposing the first
state income tax since 1980. There`s even talk of cutting Alaska`s sacred
permanent fund dividend, the yearly check to every resident for their share
of the oil well.
Last year, more than $2,000 per person. Some are already bracing for the
DIANE ANTAYA, ALASKA RESIDENT: I guess I`d like to not see that go away.
I see many of my students and families are very dependent upon it. I know
that for my own child, it`s going to help him get to college.
COHN: Long-term, there`s talk of a new pipeline for natural gas and calls
to diversify the state`s economy. But for now, Alaskans are learning a
tough lesson that won`t get easier any time soon.
Scott Cohn, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Juneau, Alaska.
MATHISEN: Spectacular scenery out there.
HERERA: It`s beautiful. It really is.
That does it for NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for tonight. I`m Sue Herera.
Thanks for joining us.
MATHISEN: And I`m Tyler Mathisen. Thanks from me as well. Have a great
evening, everybody, we`ll see you back here tomorrow.