TYLER MATHISEN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Taxing decision. States
can start collecting billions of dollars in sales tax from internet
retailers and the landmark Supreme Court ruling ripples through Wall
CONTESSA BREWER, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Forced out. Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC) CEO resigns after mixing business with pleasure and shares
MATHISEN: Modern medicine. A different kind of prescription to control
Those stories and more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Thursday,
BREWER: And good evening, everyone. I`m Contessa Brewer, in tonight for
MATHISEN: Hi, Contessa.
I`m Tyler Mathisen, in tonight for Bill Griffeth, coming to you from New
York City well there was a big decision today from the nation`s highest
court but also a big day on Wall Street and that is where we begin tonight.
Stocks fell sharply as trade tensions lingered after the U.S. commerce
secretary said more pain was needed.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WILBUR ROSS, SECRETARY OF COMMERCE: What we have to do is create an
environment where it`s more painful for these parties that have these huge
trade barriers, both tariff and non-tariff, got to make it more painful for
them to keep those barriers than to get rid of them, and that`s a lot about
all this exercise has been.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATHISEN: And that dragged investor sentiment lower and pushed the blue
chip Dow index down for the eighth straight session. That`s its longest
streak, losing streak that is, since March of last year. The selling was
broad, hitting everything from industrials to tech shares.
The Dow Jones industrial average off a hundred and ninety-six points to
24,461, Nasdaq down 68, and the S&P 500 dropped 17.
BREWER: A Supreme Court ruling could drastically change the online
shopping industry. The justices overturned a 26-year-old decision that
effectively barred states from imposing sales taxes on out-of-state
purchases. The decision was a big win for South Dakota which had asked the
court to uphold a recently passed law imposing an Internet sales tax. But
it`s considered a loss for Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and other online retailers
which saw their shares fall in trading today.
Courtney Reagan has the details.
COURTNEY REAGAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: The us Supreme
Court now says retailers should collect online sales tax from consumers
even if the retailer doesn`t have a physical presence in the buyers state.
Today`s ruling is a reversal of the decision the Supreme Court made in
1992, mostly looking at catalog shopping before online shopping became a
Explaining today`s decision, Justice Kennedy writes, quote, the Internet`s
prevalence and power have changed the dynamics of the national economy.
However, Chief Justice John Roberts and three other justices agree the
court got it wrong years ago, but say it`s Congress`s job to fix it. Large
retailers like Macy`s (NYSE:M), Home Depot (NYSE:HD) and Best Buy
(NYSE:BBY) have been in favor of online sales tax collection across the
board and count today`s decision as a win.
RON JOHNSON, ENJOY INC. CEO: I think it`s about a decade too late, but I
think it`s the right decision. The internet has had an unfair comparative
advantage against stores for a number of years and it`s really hurt Main
Street, it`s hurt large retailers, and it`s just lovely in the playing
field. I think it`s the right thing to do.
REAGAN: It`s good news for state budgets. The Government Accountability
Office estimates state and local governments lost up to thirteen billion
dollars in uncollected online sales tax last year alone. However, many
smaller businesses that sell on their own Websites or on a marketplace like
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) or Etsy aren`t happy. While
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) does collect sales tax on items it sells, more than
half of what sold on Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is sold by third-party sellers.
These merchants aren`t always collecting sales tax because until now, it
hasn`t been required by law.
Etsy CEO Josh Silverman says the decision isn`t what his company wanted but
adds, quote: We urge Congress to thoughtfully consider today`s decision and
to act swiftly and in the best interest of the micro businesses they
Now, retailers of all sizes will need to invest in systems that allow the
collection of sales tax in thousands of U.S. jurisdictions.
Most retail experts don`t believe the decision will change, which merchants
consumers buy from online in a significant way, because of other factors
like convenience. Though consumers may think twice in some cases,
particularly with high-priced purchases not previously subject to online
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Courtney Reagan.
MATHISEN: Well, let`s talk now about what this Supreme Court ruling could
mean for consumers and the retail industry. We`re joined by Arun
Sundararajan with New York University`s Stern School of Business.
Arun, welcome. How and how soon will consumers potentially feel the bite
of today`s ruling?
ARUN SUNDARARAJAN, NEW YORK UNIVERSITY STERN SCHOOL OF BUSINESS: Well, I
think they`re going to start seeing it very soon especially if you shop
through retailers like Etsy or Wayfair.
I think Wayfair is probably one of the biggest losers here. They are a
site that advertises themselves as a place where you don`t have to pay
Amazon`s probably going to see some impact but they are big enough to be
able to absorb any losses that come from their sellers having to charge
So, it certainly sort of shifts the power in the online retailing space
away from the smaller players and towards the bigger players.
BREWER: And, Arun, talk a little bit about why previously bricks and
mortar traditional retailers like Macy`s (NYSE:M) and Best Buy (NYSE:BBY)
would be so supportive of this because after all it`s going to add to their
administrative cost collecting sales tax from coast to coast, isn`t it?
SUNDARARAJAN: Well, it`s because a lot of the bricks and mortar retailers
don`t have a significant online presence relative to their bricks and
mortar presence, and they have the systems in place to collect sales tax
anyway. And so, they`re probably seeing it as a small victory as they`re
facing the online retailing onslaught. But while it certainly works in
their favor in the short run, it`s certainly not going to be a big enough
change to sort of save them from the tsunami that has been building up and
it is going to wash over their business models over the next five years.
MATHISEN: You know, Arun, it occurs to me that that beyond the fact that
that a small retailer is going to have to charge and collect 8 percent
sales tax or whatever it is in whatever the jurisdiction, but it is also
going to raise that small retailers cost of doing business if they have to
buy software systems to help them comply and then they`re going to have to
one way or another remit those collections back to the taxing district
where the consumer lives.
How much is it going to hurt them?
SUNDARARAJAN: Absolutely. I think that it`s going to cause a lot of small
sellers to try and attach themselves to larger platforms that offer the
service. It would be an Amazon`s best interest to sort of handle or
shoulder some of this burden for the millions of sellers who sell through
their marketplaces. But it also forces and locks in the smaller seller
more and more into a big platform like that.
What I`m hoping will happen is us seeing Congress carve out like you know
space in this you know — in these regulations that imposes a high enough
minimum sales, only above which you`re going to have to pay a sales tax and
so if they say, unless you make a million or more in sales, this does not
apply to you. This would certainly protect a lot of the micro businesses
that sell through Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) or sell through Etsy.
BREWER: Arun, is there — is there any bigger winner here than the
SUNDARARAJAN: Really the states are the big winners. You know, consumers
have supposed to be paying these taxes on their own. It`s just that they
don`t do it and so sales — you know, states have a way of like you know
sort of reducing the volatility of their budgets. But in the long run,
things are going to even out.
And, you know, for the large retailers who might be celebrating this as
leveling the playing field, it`s certainly not enough to sort of — for
them to sort of counter the online retail sort of juggernaut that is going
to steamroll a lot of their business models in the years to come.
MATHISEN: So, Arun, I`m shocked that you don`t think consumers are already
paying this voluntarily.
SUNDARARAJAN: You know, I guess my faith in humanity is not as high as
MATHISEN: All right. Arun Sundararajan with New York University Stern
School of Business.
BREWER: Well, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) was one of the worst performing stocks
on the Dow index today after its CEO abruptly resigned for violating
company policy. Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) also raised its profit and revenue
forecast for the second quarter, but investors just focus on the departure
of its chief executive, and that`s what Josh Lipton is looking into
JOSH LIPTON, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: A shock for Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC) and Silicon Valley today. The company removed its CEO, Brian
Krzanich, saying he had a consensual relationship with an employee that
violates company policy which says managers can`t have relationships with
people who report to them either directly or indirectly.
It`s unclear with whom Krzanich had the relationship, but it ended sometime
back, sources tell CNBC.
The company only recently learned of all this, at which point it launched
an investigation and took action in a filing today, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)
said Krzanich is entitled to a $38 million walk-away payment in the event
of a voluntary termination. An Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) spokesperson didn`t
immediately respond to comment about whether Krzanich will receive that
Krzanich was an Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) veteran. He joined the company back in
1982 and became CEO in 2013, where he broadened the chip maker`s reach
beyond the PC and the data center, and into artificial intelligence, the
Internet of things, and self-driving cars. Analysts say he gets credit for
a stock price that rose about 120 percent under his watch.
CFO Bob Swan has been named interim CEO but who could replace Krzanich
permanently? That guessing game has already begun.
TIMOTHY LESKO, GRANITE INVESTMENT PARTNER: Certainly the last time we saw
something like this, it was Hewlett. But when Hewlett went through it,
things were not good at the company and you had a lot of high high-end
talent that people wanted to get the job like Cathie Lesjak that didn`t and
I think we`ve seen Hewlett suffer from the fact that they didn`t have a
good leadership succession, you know, in place.
So I think they need to look inward and I think they need to kind of make
sure that the street knows that it is business as usual at Intel
Some say that candidate to watch is Murthy Renduchintala, he`s Intel`s
chief engineering officer, an executive well-engaged in growth markets like
5G and the Internet of things.
And it`s those growth areas that Wall Street wants the next CEO to focus
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Josh Lipton, Santa Clara, California.
MATHISEN: Well, just as today`s market decline is being pegged to
lingering trade tensions, new research shows that trade is also the reason
behind the market`s recent bout of volatility, and investors are paying
attention. Steve Liesman looks at the ups and downs.
STEVE LIESMAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: For a president
that`s otherwise been friendly to business and stocks, new research by CNBC
shows Mr. Trump`s trade policies have cost markets hundreds of billions of
dollars and created head-spinning volatility. There been 35 moves of 1
percent or more in the Dow Jones Industrial so far this year. CNBC found
fully a third of these moves related to news on trade.
On seven of those 12 days, the Dow fell an average of 1.7 percent and cost
investors a cumulative $700 billion in market capitalization. But in five
of those instances, on news that trade tensions were easing, stocks bounced
back, restoring $560 billion in value.
So, how does it all mete out?
Trade ends up being a net negative. It looks to be one big reason stocks
are flat this year, even a big strong GDP and job growth, along with the
president`s profit-friendly tax cuts.
MICHAEL ZEZAS, MORGAN STANLEY: The markets are going to have to account
kind of a couple of steps ahead when it comes to the trade disputes with
the E.U., the trade disputes with China, and when you start adding up those
effects while there they might be small in an individual basis, you know,
very quickly offset the fiscal stimulus that you got from tax cuts and
spending increases, we think that was baked in the markets at the end of
last year. So, you know, negative trade news should be negative market
LIESMAN: The research shows the companies taking the biggest hits from
negative trade news are household names stocks deeply involved in world
trade. They include Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), Boeing (NYSE:BA), 3M
(NYSE:MMM) and Dow DuPont. Even big financial stocks like Goldman Sachs
(NYSE:GS) and J.P. Morgan end up being hurt when trade news comes over the
Among the biggest drops, on March 22nd, President Trump announced $60
billion in tariffs on China. Markets plunged nearly 3 percent. But four
days later, the Dow surged 2.8 percent after a “Wall Street Journal” story
said the U.S. and China were quietly negotiating to improve trade and
improvement that never came.
it`s worth pointing out we could not find a 1 percent positive move or
higher link to any news that tariffs would be increased. That`s a pretty
clear sign equity investors don`t see the economic upside from higher
tariffs or a trade war.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Steve Liesman.
BREWER: It`s time to take a look at some of today`s upgrades and
Shares of Nike (NYSE:NKE) were downgraded to neutral from buy at UBS. The
analyst says the markets upbeat outlook is already priced into the stock.
The price target is $78. Shares fell 1 percent to $73.94.
Verizon (NYSE:VZ) shares were upgraded to buy from neutral at Goldman Sachs
(NYSE:GS). The analyst says the stock has been unfairly punished falling
about 7 percent so far this year. The price target is $56. Shares rose 1
percent to $48.63.
MATHISEN: And that same Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) analyst, busy day for that
person, upgraded shares of Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR) to buy from
neutral. The analyst cites strong network assets. A large customer base
and strong financials. Price target now, $361. The stock closed the
session at $291.86.
And AMC Network was downgraded to underperform from market perform over at
Bernstein. The analyst there says it`s unlikely that AMC will be acquired
at a premium and that investors hoping for a take out will be disappointed.
The price target now, $59 a share. The stock fell 3-1/2 percent to $65.02.
BREWER: So, ahead, OPEC`s big decision.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRIAN SULLIVAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: I`m Brian Sullivan
in Vienna, Austria. Coming up next, why decision to actually raise oil
output, they also raise oil prices. That`s next on NIGHTLY BUSINESS
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREWER: The 35 largest U.S. banks have all cleared the first part of the
Fed`s annual stress test. The stress test is conducted to ensure that
banks would be able to maintain enough capital during times of extreme
stress. The central bank introduced the test following the financial
crisis. The results of the second part come next week.
MATHISEN: The world`s biggest oil producers are nearing a deal to lift oil
production and if that happens, it has the potential to change the dynamics
of the energy markets. But such a deal is very complicated and oil prices
today struggle for direction, ultimately settling slightly lower as you see
Brian Sullivan is in Vienna tonight.
SULLIVAN: It`s looking more and more like President Trump will get his
wish and OPEC will pump more oil on the months ahead. That`s the takeaway
from day two of the OPEC conference in Austria.
Tomorrow, right here, the world will be watching as the cartel will make
its official announcement of how much oil it plans to add to the global
markets reversing a decision that reduced output by more than a million
barrels a day.
OPEC secretary-general telling CNBC that he is confident a deal will be
MOHAMMAD BARKINDO, OPEC SECRETARY GENERAL: I am optimistic that our
conference on Friday, tomorrow, with OPEC, and then OPEC and non-OPEC on
Saturday, will come up with a consensus decision.
SULLIVAN: The question many have is why Saudi Arabia would want to pump
more oil when it`s perceived that higher prices are better for their
Oil expert and author Dan Yergin says that it was likely pressure from the
Trump administration that pushed the Saudis to demand more output.
DANIEL YERGIN, IHS (NYSE:IHS) MARKIT VICE CHAIRMAN: The relationship
between Saudi Arabia and the United States now is very close. It`s a much
better relationship than it was under the previous administration and I
think both sides want to see that relationship continue to be a basis, that
it`s very much at the center of the Middle East strategy of the Trump
SULLIVAN: But even an agreement to raise production may not be enough to
keep oil costs from rising, because sanctions on Iran, as well as
Venezuela`s continued economic disaster mean more than a million barrels
per day may still disappear from the market this year.
MICHAEL ROTHMAN, CORNERSTONE ANALYTICS: In the back half of this year,
even if OPEC exhausted its spare capacity right now, which is about 1
million barrels a day, we`re still going to draw inventories in the third
and fourth quarters. That means higher prices.
SULLIVAN: Which also means both OPEC and President Trump could come out
ahead. OPEC gets to pump more oil and also make more money, and the
president looks like he`s applying pressure to help the American consumer.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Brian Sullivan, Vienna, Austria.
BREWER: So, what`s in the cards for tomorrow and how does the decision
here impact oil prices?
We`re joined by John Kilduff, who`s the founding partner at Again Capital.
First of all, what are you reading in the tea leaves about what the
official decision will be tomorrow?
JOHN KILDUFF, FOUNDING PARTNER, AGAIN CAPITAL: From comments made this
evening by the Russian oil minister and Saudi Arabia`s oil minister, the
decision has been made to make a million barrel per day boost in
BREWER: Will there be enough supply?
KILDUFF: This will help a lot, but demand is robust and strong, and that`s
why they`re doing it now for this third quarter where we see a lot of fuel
demand from summer driving here in the United States and around the world.
So, it`s an important move and it looks to have really undercut the price
rally that was going on just a few weeks ago.
MATHISEN: You know, John, do you — do you subscribe to the analysis in
the piece just a moment ago that we could get the million barrel a day
increase in production, but that prices could go up as well?
KILDUFF: It`s — it bears watching, Tyler. I am not that constructive on
prices as that gentleman was in the piece, but we are at a deficit
situation. But I think this is an important move by Saudi Arabia. Saudi
Arabia has 2 million barrels of spare capacity in and of itself. So they
are trying to be generous and spread the wealth around here a little bit,
even as the Iranian barrels go off line here from the U.S. sanctions.
The wild card there, Tyler, is that there`s a country like China who
doesn`t care about the U.S. sanctions or the implications from the U.S.
banking system problems, still step up and fill the gap and buy that
Iranian oil. So, it`s not a certainty at all that all of that oil or
several hundred thousand barrels worth of it gets lost.
BREWER: You`re dealing with instability in Venezuela, in Libya, in Iran,
can the Saudi increase counterbalance some of that when you`re dealing with
growing demand in places like China and India?
KILDUFF: Right now, it has. Right now, this is sent a big signal to the
market that while the Saudis contemplated just about a month ago, that they
were thinking about letting prices float up to $85 to $100. They got the
message from Donald Trump. They got the message from India. They got the
message from China too, that this is hurting their economies and their
And the Saudis have come to realize the customers, this is their word, are
very important to this mix as well. So, that`s why they`re addressing this
So, this is a good start. They may have to do more. They likely will do
MATHISEN: And, John, the Russians go along with this because?
KILDUFF: Well, they are happy as clams, Tyler. The Russian oil companies
never wanted to be part of this program. They had to follow the lead of
their President Putin. But they want to be like our U.S. shale players,
our U.S. oil companies. They want to keep producing and growing and
putting more oil on the market and getting more market share. So, they are
happy as clams to be adding more oil now.
BREWER: What do you expect for gas prices?
KILDUFF: They have peaked for the summer. They should continue to trend
lower. We`ll see about what happens in the fall and everybody goes back to
work and school, they could pop up a little bit again, but we should see
the national average trend down to around to $2.55 to $2.70 a gallon.
BREWER: John Kilduff with Again Capital — John, thank you so much for
adding your expertise.
KILDUFF: Thank you very much for having me.
MATHISEN: Well, Kroger`s investments are paying off and that`s where we
begin tonight`s “Market Focus”. The grocery store topped earnings and
revenue estimates, increased spending on its digital operations. That led
to a sharp rise in online sales.
Kroger (NYSE:KR) also raised the low end of its full-year profit estimates.
Shares finished up nearly 10 percent on the session — it was a down day
overall — to $28.73. Best day for Kroger (NYSE:KR) in nine years.
Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI (NASDAQ:TBUS)) said an increase in customer
visits helped sales rise at a faster than expected clip. The owner of
Olive Garden, Longhorns Steakhouse, also beat earnings expectations and
said it sees same store sales rising as much as 2 percent this year.
Shares up more than 14 percent to $107.06.
But it was a much different story today at Barnes & Noble (NYSE:NE)
(NYSE:BKS). The bookstore chain reported a wider than expected loss and
disappointing revenue as weaker same store sales hurt results. Shares were
off almost 4 percent to $6.20.
BREWER: Conagra Foods is reportedly interested once again in merging with
Pinnacle Foods. Several reports say the two companies are once again in
talks one year after initial conversations fell apart. A potential deal
could create the second-largest U.S. frozen food company. Shares of
Pinnacle rose 2 percent to $66.01. Meanwhile, Conagra shares were off a
fraction to $38.28.
Shares of stamps.com took a nosedive today after the White House said it
wants to restructure the U.S. postal system to create a sustainable
business model. The U.S. government said it also would consider turning
the business into a privately held operation in the future. Shares of
stamps.com fell 10 percent to $251.85.
And after the bell, software company Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) topped both
earnings and sales expectations, but it was the company`s guidance that
worried investors. Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) expects results in the current
quarter and the full year to miss street targets. And so, as you might
expect, shares initially sold off in after hours. They ended the regular
day down 2 percent to $165.73.
MATHISEN: Coming up, defeating diabetes. A new program that can improve
health and curb costs.
BREWER: Spending on medicine to help control diabetes is on the rise, but
a new program is helping lower the cost while at the same time improving
patient health. The idea is relatively simple.
Meg Tirrell has tonight`s “Modern Medicine”.
MEG TIRRELL, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Rita Perkins has lost
more than half her body weight by walking more. She lost a hundred pounds,
but the scales stuck there as she couldn`t kick unhealthy habits. And
Perkins struggled to control her diabetes.
Then she received a different kind of prescription, a prescription for
fresh healthy food. We`re standing in the fresh food pharmacy at Geisinger
Perkins is part of a new program at Geisinger Health System designed to
control type diabetes and low-income patients, not with more medicine but
with food and education.
DR. ANDREA FEINBERG, GEISINGER HEALTH SYSTEM: In healthcare, we spend an
awful lot drugs and devices, because it`s business. But we spend a very
small amount on preventative medicine. It`s sort of like we`re upside down
TIRRELL: The program has resulted in dramatic improvements in patient`s
health, from cholesterol to weight loss to blood sugar. Some have been
able to reduce use of diabetes medicines. And it saves money too.
FEINBERG: Financially, we`ve seen probably a decrease in healthcare claims
paid out on our Geisinger patients by over two-thirds.
RITA PERKINS, GEISINGER PATIENT: This is the plate I used to eat on. Now,
I am down to this size of a plate.
TIRRELL: Perkins receives 10 free meals a week for everyone in her
household. She says the program helped her drop another 45 pounds and it`s
also setting a new path for her family.
PERKINS: I know they are learning to eat in a healthier way than what I
TIRRELL: With a hundred million Americans estimated to have diabetes or
pre-diabetes, use of medicines has been on the rise. Prescriptions rose 18
percent between 2013 and 2017, while spending on U.S. diabetes medicines
more than doubled to $54 billion.
But programs like Geisinger which the health system plans expand may help
make a dent.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Meg Tirrell.
BREWER: You can read more about this program to help control diabetes on
our Website, NBR.com.
MATHISEN: And before we go, let`s take another look at the day on Wall
Street. It was a down day. The Dow off 196 points, Nasdaq down 68, and
the S&P, folks, dropped 17.
BREWER: That`s NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for tonight. I`m Contessa Brewer.
Thank you for watching.
MATHISEN: And thanks for me as well. I`m Tyler Mathisen. Have a great
evening, everybody. And we`ll see you back here tomorrow.
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