SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Paying you back. All U.S.
banks passed the stress test and get the OK to deliver dividends to
shareholders. Are there names you should add to your long-term holdings?
TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Passive power. Investors
are plowing money into exchange traded funds. And that may be a big reason
for the market`s rally. Should you be concerned?
HERERA: Pension freeze. More companies are changing their retirement
plans. The question is why?
Those stories and more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Wednesday,
MATHISEN: Good evening, everyone, and welcome.
It was all about the banks today. The financials led the market rally and
could potentially lead stocks higher tomorrow.
Late today, in an indication of how much healthier the financial system has
become, the Federal Reserve gave the biggest U.S. banks the green light to
use their extra capital for stock buybacks and more dividends. That`s good
news for investors looking for extra income.
Kayla Tausche has more on the final results of the central bank`s so-called
KAYLA TAUSCHE, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: For the first time
since the financial crisis, the Federal Reserve has not rejected any of the
capital plans submitted by the 34 banks getting stress tested, finding the
companies to be sufficiently capitalized to return money to shareholders
while weathering a recession.
The Fed did find risk management issues at Capital One. Capital One is
required to resubmit its plan within six months or risk its shareholder
payouts getting frozen. The company`s levels exceeded the Fed`s threshold,
but it did once already adjusted shareholder returns before the stress test
results were first out last Thursday.
American Express (NYSE:EXPR) (NYSE:AXP) did the same as one of its capital
levels was below the Fed`s threshold. Senior Fed officials said the rapid
growth in credit card balances and uptick in delinquencies and a stress
test that included more severe losses for credit cards all played a role in
this year`s assessment. AmEx cleared the bar by resubmitting its capital
Senior Fed officials said unlike years past, getting close to the threshold
won`t be met with a supervisory penalty. And to that end, banks have
requested substantially increased shareholder payouts. These officials say
banks will be getting closer to returning 100 percent of their net revenues
to shareholders at this time. That would also be a post-financial crisis
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Kayla Tausche, in Washington.
HERERA: And the banks were quick to react. Here`s what some said almost
immediately after the results were released. Citigroup (NYSE:C) doubling
its dividend, and launching its biggest buyback ever. Morgan Stanley
(NYSE:MS) raising its dividend by 25 percent. American Express (NYSE:EXPR)
(NYSE:AXP) by 9 percent and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) by 3 percent.
MATHISEN: Fred Cannon joins us now to discuss big bank names he likes, now
that they`ve been approved by the Fed to pay out more dividends to
shareholders. He`s director of research at KBW (NYSE:KBW).
Welcome, Fred. Good to have you with us.
FRED CANNON, DIRECTOR OF RESEARCH, KBW (NYSE:KBW): Great to be on.
MATHISEN: — this is good news for the big banks, the ones that have been
sort of restricted from paying back buyouts or dividends to shareholders.
If I don`t own these banks already, is it too late for me to benefit from
CANNON: We don`t think so, especially the biggest banks, because what
you`re seeing here is both the results show they`re very strong on capital.
Credit is good. They`re going to be paying a lot back in repurchases and
dividends to shareholders and we have a situation where, you know, things
are looking pretty good from a regulatory standpoint, too. Valuations are
So, we continue to think the biggest banks are the best opportunities for
HERERA: Who do you think is the best positioned in terms of its stock
price and also in terms of its future growth plan?
CANNON: Well, growth really isn`t necessarily what you`re looking for in
the big banks today. So — but we think in terms of their plans and where
they are today, we think Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) is top of our list.
Very good results today. They`re making good progress in terms of managing
the costs and all those legacy issues of lawsuits have started to wane.
So, that`s our top pick.
But if you look at JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), another one, very good shape, above
expectations today. And Citi, of course, buying back shares below tangible
book values always a good thing for a bank.
MATHISEN: So, let`s talk about going on different direction. Is there an
argument to be made if I don`t want to buy and hitch my wagons to an
individual bank, that I shouldn`t just buy an ETF, a bank ETF.
CANNON: Sure. KWB is the one to be. And it`s —
MATHISEN: Did I set you up for that, Fred, or what?
CANNON: You did. That`s the one that has weighted towards the largest
banks, and that`s where the best value is. So, we do think — if you want
ETF, we have one for you.
HERERA: What did you think of the results of the stress test? Have you
had a chance to really review the Fed`s comments? And what was your
reaction to the way that these banks have now managed to improve their
capital levels and their balance sheets?
CANNON: Well, I think it was both a positive and a relief. We continue to
worry each year that the Fed is going to go after at least one or two banks
that failed. And Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) was on top of people`s list of
concerns this year because of all the problems they`ve had over the last
year and a half. Yet, Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) got over the hurdle, too.
So, yes, we had a resubmission by Capital One, but overall, I think it
really reconfirms a couple of things. One is the stress testing has become
a way of life for these banks and we know how do it, the Fed knows to put
out proposals, and we know how now to get it so that the banks can have
very positive returns.
So I think not only is it a positive, it`s also a relief and it shows you
that the process is well into place. And if we get somewhat lighter
regulatory touch from the new administration, these numbers could improve
even more as we go into 2018 and `19.
MATHISEN: Fred, great to see you. Fred Cannon, KBW (NYSE:KBW).
CANNON: Great to be on. Thanks.
HERERA: Shares of Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) and JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) helped
lead the Dow to a triple digit gain today, helping the major indexes
rebound from their worst session in weeks. The Dow Jones Industrial
Average rose 143 points to 21454, the Nasdaq added 87, and S&P 500 was up
MATHISEN: Well, we just talked about ETFs and the boom in passive
investing is fuelling the stock market rally. According to the “Wall
Street Journal,” exchange-traded funds, or ETFs, spent $98 billion buying
U.S. stocks during the first quarter. Even a stock market valuations
appeared high and other big buyers were stepping back.
So, will ETF buyers continue to help drive this market higher?
Michael Venuto is chairman of the Toroso ETF Industry Index, which tracks
the performance of the ETF industry.
Michael, welcome. Good to have you with us.
MICHAEL VENUTO, CHAIRMAN, TOROSO ETF INDUSTRY INDEX: Thank you, Tyler.
MATHISEN: So, do I need to be worried about this phenomenon? How big is
it? Ninety-eight billion sounds like a lot of money and by any measure, it
truly is. But is it creating sort of bubble-licious territory in the
VENUTO: I like that term, bubblelicious, but this is really about the law
of large numbers, right? The ETF industry has been growing about 20
percent a year in assets for about 10 years, and at $3 trillion today, $98
billion is only about 3 percent.
So, it is a huge number. But in a percentage term, it`s within historical
norms. It`s part of the growth of the industry.
HERERA: Yes. You know, not all ETFs are created equal. There are some
kind of hybrid ETFs that are out there. So, as the investor looks at that
landscape and if indeed you`re correct and we may see more expansion into
this part of the market, what do you watch for?
VENUTO: Well, you got to watch and know what`s in an ETF, right? Like
it`s not just about what the name is. You have to know what is actually
happening under the hood and how the process of creating the index works.
MATHISEN: So, when the money is put into an ETF, let`s say a financial
advisor says, I`m going to take your capital. I`m going to put it into an
ETF because you get low, you get very good price efficiency, low expenses.
You get diversification. All of that money has to get put to work across
the index or whatever the benchmark is, that the ETF is measured against,
or created out of.
That really doesn`t cause anybody to be discriminating into whether they`re
buying good values or not, does it? I mean, in other words, all of that
money is getting put to work, regardless of whether this stock is
overpriced and that one is underpriced.
VENUTO: You`re absolutely right and in the broad-based index, like the S&P
or QQQs, I don`t think that`s a problem yet. ETFs, on average, own about 6
percent or so with those kinds of name. But when you get into more niche
things, like REITs, for example —
VENUTO: Yes. REITs, for example, today, it`s about 15 percent of the
market cap. Most REITs are owned by ETFs, and I think that`s because
investors are looking for yield. And ETFs are a better way to get them so
they go passive. And you have to watch that. That`s place where to steal
your term, Tyler, it could be bubblelicious.
MATHISEN: All right. Michael, we have to leave there. We`ll be back and
talk more about this interesting story. Michael Venuto with the Toroso ETF
HERERA: To real estate now where fewer buyers signed contracts to buy
existing homes in May. That is likely because they can`t find a home that
they want and if they do, it`s probably too expensive. The lack of
inventory could be behind the 0.8 percent drop in pending home sales last
month, marking the third consecutive decline.
As we`ve been reporting, there isn`t enough housing supply to satisfy
demand and that is causing prices to rise, increasing the number of homes
that are out of reach for buyers.
MATHISEN: We`ve also seen an increase in demand for rentals, especially
rental apartments. And while prices for those are rising as well, one
developer may have a solution and he hopes it catches on with the younger
more social generation.
Diana Olick has the story from Chicago tonight.
DIANA OLICK, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): From the
outside, this Chicago apartment building looks like any other, but inside,
there`s an experiment going on.
DAN ELLCH, L LOGAN SQUARE RESIDENT: I was a little bit hesitant, and then
I started to think about it more. And I thought, you know, I mean, I`m
living alone isn`t that great.
OLICK: Dan Ellch is co-living in apartment that was specifically designed
and built for three independent residents. It`s not just a roommate thing.
Each room has its own bathroom and the common area is fully furnished, with
all the amenities from flatware to flat screen, and each resident has his
or her own lease. The monthly rent is cheaper because of the share.
It`s the brain child of Brian Shear of Property Markets Group, an apartment
developer operating in New York, Miami and Chicago.
RYAN SHEAR, PRINCIPAL, PROPERTY MARKETS GROUP: How do you make your home a
place where you connect with somebody, right? So, you have to attract the
right demographic. Everybody`s welcome. But young professionals is a
target demographic, and how do you connect them.
OLICK: Through communal spaces in the apartment and in building like this
open roof deck boasting a real Chicago L car for parties and such.
Noah Gottlieb, another PMG partner in the project, also lives in the
building, monitoring the experiment.
NOAH GOTTLEIB, PROPERTY MARKETS GROUP PRINCIPAL: So, you don`t want a
dirty roommate, right? So, we`re going to clean your apartment every once
in a while. You don`t want a roommate that you don`t like. So, we`re
going to allow your movement in the building if you don`t like your
OLICK: A year in, he claims there have been few problems and demand was
off the chart.
GOTTLEIB: We did 30 deals in 35 days.
OLICK: Less than 10 percent of the units in this building are social and
that`s by design, literally. The concept is so new that investors aren`t
quite ready to buy into to a fully social building.
GOTTLEIB: Like evolving over many years, it`s not something you said, hey,
let`s just jam people together and like have a party. It has 10,000 moving
parts to it. Our ability as developer to control all of them I think is
massively like a huge competitive advantage to somebody else!
OLICK: Others like We Live and Common also offer co-living, but it`s a
different model. They don`t own or build buildings, but act more like
hotels, offering short-term leases. The leases here are one year. PMG is
already developing other properties which will have even more social units.
GOTTLIEB: Everything will have absolute element of co-living, because we
want to hit that price point. We want to cater to the people that — I
mean, co-living really does for the most part solve the price point
problem, right? It`s your cheapest entry into a building.
OLICK: Dan Ellch just signed his second year lease.
ELLCH: I think it will continue, especially if people move around a lot
and they`re not so much fixed at an early age, you know, through a location
and this is a great bridge to like a new city or a new area.
OLICK: And a new way of living.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Diana Olick in Chicago.
HERERA: UPS is the latest company to freeze its pension plan for nonunion
employees. That change could affect more than 70,000 people. The company
is not the first to do it and likely not the last. Morgan Brennan takes a
look at why more companies are moving in this direction.
MORGAN BRENNAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Starting in 2023,
UPS will over 401(k) plans instead of the traditional pensions it currently
offers non-union employees, and contribute to those accounts beyond any
employee`s savings match. The move only affects about 17 percent of UPS`
workforce, but it speaks to a much bigger trend in corporate America right
now: ballooning pension liabilities.
UPS had a nearly $10 billion pension deficit last year and according to
Mercer, the shortfall of all S&P`s 1,500 companies combined was nearly $400
billion as of April. Why? Stubbornly low interest rates, tighter
regulations and the fact that many people are living longer.
More employers are responding by freezing traditional retirement offerings
and switching to 401(k)s.
Willis Towers Watson (NYSE:TW) says from 1998 to 2015, the percentage of
new hires at Fortune 500 companies offered traditional pensions fell from
roughly 60 percent down to 20 percent, and about 40 percent of employers
had a frozen pension plan all together.
Among those that have done so: Boeing (NYSE:BA), U.S. Steel, Kimberly-Clark
(NYSE:KMB) and AIG.
What`s more interesting, many like General Motors (NYSE:GM), United
Technologies (NYSE:UTX) and Sears (NASDAQ:SHLD) and, just last week,
Accenture, have also offloaded those obligations, shifting them to insurers
like Prudential Financial and MetLife (NYSE:MET). The strategy makes the
employer`s balance sheets less volatile and it creates a source of growth
for life insurers, which have also struggled amid low rates.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Morgan Brennan.
HERERA: Still ahead, the popular weed killer at the center of a growing
HERERA: The Food and Drug Administration is taking steps to increase the
number of generic prescription drugs on the market. The agency says the
move would make medicines more affordable. And give people increased
access to the drugs that they need. The commissioner added that while the
FDA does not have the power to regulate prices, it can help increase market
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCOTT GOTTLIEB, FDA COMMISSIONER: We`re looking at the places where there
aren`t a lot of generic competitors. We`re now publishing a list. We
announced yesterday we`re going to publish a list of all the places where
there`s only one generic drug on the market, where there`s basically patent
exclusivity, has expired on the branded drug, but there`s no generic
competitors. And we`re also going to be prioritizing the entry of new
generic drugs into a category until there are three competitors because we
really don`t see the big price breaks for consumers until there are three
competitors in the market place.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERERA: The FDA has also scheduled a meeting in mid-July to discuss
possible changes to its rules for approving generics. Those rules have
inadvertently enabled some brand name drug makers to prevent or delay
MATHISEN: Strong demand for soybeans helped Monsanto`s bottom line. The
seeds company reported quarterly profits that were better than expected.
Soybean seeds represent the company`s second biggest business by revenue.
Monsanto (NYSE:MON) also being bought for $66 billion by Germany`s buyer.
If the deal is approved, it will create a company that commands more than a
quarter of the world market for seeds and pesticides.
HERERA: And the main ingredient in Monsanto`s popular pesticide Roundup is
at the center of a controversial move by the state of California. A
government office there said the ingredient causes cancer and plans to
classify it as a carcinogen, but Monsanto (NYSE:MON) vows to fight back.
Aditi Roy has more.
ADITI ROY, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Whether you battle weeds
at your home or in your fields, Roundup branded herbicides are some of the
most effective methods for controlling them.
Roundup is the most widely used weed killer in the U.S. and the world.
It`s also agro chemical giant Monsanto`s flagship brand used on genetically
modified crops like corn and soybeans. But the active herbicide in the
product, glyphosate, is at the heart of a legal battle in California. The
state has added glyphosate to a list of chemicals known to cause cancer.
Some scientists agree with the decision.
NATHAN DONLEY, SENIOR SCIENTIST, CENTER FOR BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY: It
allows another agency to come to a scientific conclusion on the health
effects of this chemical.
ROY: But Monsanto (NYSE:MON) vehemently denies the claim, pointing out
that the Environmental Protection Agency and other regulators worldwide
have approved the herbicide.
In a statement, a spokesman says: We will continue to aggressively
challenge this improper decision.
The trouble started two years ago when the World Health Organization`s
International Agency for Research on Cancer identified the herbicide as
probably carcinogenic to humans.
California`s Proposition 65 requires certain chemicals identified by that
agency as carcinogens to be added to the state`s list. Monsanto (NYSE:MON)
went to court to stop the move, but a judge dismissed the suit. The
company has appealed the decision.
In the meantime, another battle is brewing in Arkansas. In this case, the
state`s plant board has banned the use of the dicamba, the active herbicide
in another weed killer made by the company. The state`s governor still has
to sign off on the ban for it to take effect.
In this morning`s earnings call, company CEO Hugh Grant addressed an
analyst`s question about dicamba.
HUGH GRANT, MONSANTO CEO: The number of inquiries we`re experiencing would
be normal for any product. Even products that have been established in the
marketplace would experience a number of inquiries every year. So, we feel
really good about where we`re at.
ROY: Glyphosate is currently under a standard re-registration review in
Europe and the U.S.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Aditi Roy, San Francisco.
HERERA: Fewer promotions helped results at General Mills (NYSE:GIS) and
that`s where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus”.
The maker of Cheerios and Haagen-Dazs ice cream also said cost cuts
contributed to the company`s better than expected profit. Sales edged
lower, but they were still strong enough to beat analysts` forecast. The
company also raised its quarterly dividend to 49 cents a share. General
Mills (NYSE:GIS) up more than 1-1/2 percent to $56.42.
FedEx (NYSE:FDX) said the cyberattack that hit companies and governments
around the world yesterday could have a material impact on its financial
results. The company said worldwide operations of its delivery unit TNT
Express (NYSE:EXPR) were significantly affected, but FedEx (NYSE:FDX) did
not — did note that it does not believe any sensitive data were stolen.
Shares rose more than 1 percent to $217.15.
And the Dutch health care company Phillips will buy U.S. heart device maker
Spectranetics for more than $2 billion. Phillips said the deal will allow
it to further expand its image-guided therapy business. Spectranetics up
26 percent to $38.35.
HERERA: The payroll services company Paychecks reported sales grew and
topped estimates. Earnings also rose, beating expectations, but the
company`s guidance for its next fiscal year came in shy of analysts
forecast, and that sent shares lower by nearly 2 percent to $57.65.
And the home goods retailer Pier 1 reported a narrower than expected loss
in its latest quarter. But the good news pretty much ended there. The
company said same store sales were flat while overall revenue fell and
missed estimates. Shares of the small cap stock initially plunged in
afterhours trading, but it ended the regular session up just a fraction to
MATHISEN: Blue Apron, the biggest meal delivery company in the United
States, is going public. While the meal kit delivery business is growing,
it is also changing very quickly, with Amazon`s recent purchase of Whole
Foods as a major looming threat.
As Bob Pisani reports, that is a big concern for some investors and it
prompted Blue Apron to cut its IPO price range.
BOB PISANI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Blue Apron is in the
business of delivering meals, but Amazon`s purchase of Whole Foods has
changed the dynamics of home delivery. It can easily get into Blue Apron`s
Here`s the good news: there`s decent growth. Their revenues are likely to
hit $1 billion this year and gross margins are healthy. They`ve got a lot
of repeat orders. That accounts for about 90 percent of their revenues,
and it`s reasonably priced compared to competitors GrubHub.
Here`s the bad news. They`re losing money because they`re spending a lot
on marketing. They lost 50 million in the first quarter because customer
acquisition costs — that`s the cost of getting new customers — are rising
and competition is ramping up. So, you have Hello Fresh which is ready to
go public in Germany. It`s already in the U.S. There`s others, Home Chef,
Plated. But the big white shark is Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN).
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) Fresh right now is just doing grocery delivery.
Although it has not been a strong suit for Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), you can be
sure that home delivery is a big reason for the Whole Foods purchase. It
spells major competition for Blue Apron. By the way, this may be bad news
for Blue Apron, but it`s good news for everyone who wants to buy Blue
Apron. After all, if you`re an investor, would you rather buy it at $11 or
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Bob Pisani at the New York Stock Exchange.
HERERA: Coming up, we go behind the wheel of a self-driving car.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PHIL LEBEAU, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: It is the next
advancement in self-driving cars. Going hands free in Cadillac CT6 with
Super Cruise. That story up on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERERA: The Department of Homeland Security is calling for new security
measures for airlines flying to the U.S. but is stepping back from
expanding its ban on traveling with laptops. In March, DHS prohibited
personal electronic devices in the cabins of planes departing to the U.S.
from 10 airports in the Middle East and Africa. Officials say there will
be enhanced screening of passengers and their belongings at foreign
airports. The new rules will affect 180 airlines operating in 280 airports
in more than 100 countries.
The existing electronics prohibitions could be lifted at those 10 airports
if official there comply with the new procedures.
MATHISEN: The CEO of General Motors (NYSE:GM) says the world needs more
computer coders and that`s why Mary Barra announced a new push to train
engineers. Barra said that cars today have hundreds of millions of lines
of code and that`s why the automaker is partnering with four organizations
to help train teachers who will teach more than 40,000 students during the
upcoming school year.
HERERA: The newest feature in self-driving cars has the car watching the
driver to make sure they`re ready to take control on the highway in case of
an emergency. It`s all part of Cadillac`s new Super Cruise technology.
How does it work?
Well, Phil LeBeau takes us for a ride just outside Palo Alto, California.
LEBEAU (voice-over): Cadillac calls its Super Cruise technology a game
changer, allowing hands free driving on the highway while ensuring drivers
pay attention. Radar and sensors watch what`s happening around the CT6
sedan as a small camera on the steering column watches the driver`s eyes
and head position. If you focus on a text message or doze off behind the
wheel, the Cadillac will alert you to take control.
(on camera): That seems like a really long time.
(voice-over): The technology is designed to lift the driving experience,
according to the head of Cadillac, who took us for a hands free drive.
JOHAN DE NYSSCHEN, CADILLAC PRESIDENT & CEO: We`ve designed the system to
engage the driver. And the sensors that are embedded in the vehicle
certainly make sure that the driver remains alert. You don`t have to
drive, or you can have conversations on dialogue as we are doing now.
LEBEAU: Super Cruise comes more than a year after Tesla made a big splash
and grabbed headlines with its autopilot semi-autonomous technology, which
allows drivers to take their hands off the steering wheel for short periods
MICHELLE KREBS, AUTOTRADER.COM: This is definitely a shot across the bow
of Tesla, which already has autopilot. So, Cadillac is really trying to
take Tesla on in that category of technology.
LEBEAU: Cadillac believes Super Cruise raises the bar compared to Tesla`s
DE NYSSCHEN: Ours is up. It`s first system that allows completely hands
free driving. The other propriety systems out there require that drivers
put their hands on the steering wheel and that is one important difference.
LEBEAU (on camera): The Cadillac CT6 with Super Cruise technology goes on
sale this fall and while the company has not said how much it will charge
for this feature, Cadillac does believe that it will be in demand by
drivers who would like to go hands free.
Phil LeBeau, CNBC Business News, Palo Alto, California.
HERERA: That`s NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT tonight. I`m Sue Herera. Thanks
for joining us.
MATHISEN: And I`m Tyler Mathisen. Thanks from me as well and have a great
evening, everybody. And we`ll see you tomorrow.
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