BILL GRIFFETH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Critical point. Hiring
remains strong as more Americans decide to enter the workforce, but is it
enough to ease the intense labor shortage?
SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Digging in. The U.S. and
China levy tariffs on billions of dollars worth of goods and there may be
more to come.
GRIFFETH: Fungus to fixtures. Meet the entrepreneur whose manufacturing
mushrooms into lamp shades, creating what is literally a bright idea.
Those stories and much more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for this
Friday, July 6th.
HERERA: Good evening, everyone, and happy Friday.
On a day when a trade war breaks out, you`d expect the market to be down,
but not today and for that, you can thank the jobs report. Hiring was
steady, the economy added more jobs than expected last month extending what
has been the longest continuous job expansion on record. The unemployment
rate rose to 4 percent, but the increase was for the right reason. More
people entered the workforce and that seemed to please both Wall Street and
Main Street, at least for now.
Steve Liesman starts us off with the details tonight.
STEVE LIESMAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: A strong jobs report
for June cooling several concerns for the time being about the U.S.
economy, including worries about the impact of the trade war and a job
market that might be running too hot.
Payrolls in June surged by 213,000. That was better than expectations and
almost 40,000 jobs were added to the count of the prior two months. But
wages rose a modest 0.2 percent or 2.7 percent compared to a year ago,
easing inflation concerns.
The unemployment rate ticked up to 4 percent as more people entered the
workforce, but didn`t immediately find jobs. Every time the unemployment
rate has kicked up since 2010, it`s come back down since people say they`re
available to work in a single month, but don`t necessarily have a job so
they`re counted as unemployed, but over the next few months, they have
intended to find that work.
JAN HATZIUS, GOLDMAN SACHS: There is a lot of strength in this jobs report
as there have been other indicators over the past few months.
LIESMAN: But some are concerned it may be too much of a good thing.
Economists expect eventually for the U.S. to run out of workers and for
wages and inflation to rise as a result.
HATZIUS: I do think we`re running a risk of overheating the economy. I
think we`ll move past full employment and the tradeoff between north and
inflation`s going to get worse.
LIESMAN: And there`s the tariffs imposed by the Trump administration to
which countries including China and Europe have retaliated. It may be too
soon to see the effects where maybe that right now, they`re too small to
show up. Most economists agree, further escalation and retaliation will
hurt more, so the effects of future tariffs on the jobs report will be
harder to hide no matter how strong the U.S. economy.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Steve Liesman.
GRIFFETH: And for more on the nation`s employment picture right now, we`re
joined by our friend Mark Zandi, the chief economist at Moody`s Analytics.
Always good to see you, Mark. Welcome back.
MARK ZANDI, CHIEF ECONOMIST, MOODY`S ANALYTICS: Thank you, Bill. Thank
GRIFFETH: If there is a question about the jobs report lately, it has been
about wage growth. With full employment upon us for the most part, such
tight labor market, why aren`t wages going up anymore? But you have a
slightly different take on that, don`t you?
ZANDI: I do. You know, wage growth has picked up and if you go back two,
three, four years ago, wage growth was 1-1/2 to 2 percent. Now, it`s 2-1/2
to 3, and it`s steadily accelerating.
And the really good news is that wage growth for new entrance, folks coming
into the workforce is rapidly accelerating, and I think that`s a leading
indicator for wage growth more broadly because businesses, you know, they
have to pay their new workers more, they`re going to have to pay all their
workers more. So, I think it`s coming.
Just hold tight, Bill. It`s coming.
HERERA: You know, it seems to be kind of feast or famine for a long time.
We were talking about a lack of wage growth. Now, we`re getting wage
growth and people are talking about it being inflationary. But it doesn`t
seem to be at that point yet, is it?
ZANDI: No, it`s not.
HERERA: I mean, wage growth 2-1/2 to 3 is very consistent with the stable
rates of inflation. But here`s the issue, you know, we`re at a 4 percent
unemployment rate, job growth is a couple hundred thousand per month, labor
force growth is 100,000 per month. So, unemployment is going to continue
We`re going to go into the mid-threes by this time next year, and low
threes by the end of next year. And so, at that point, I do think wage
growth will be inflationary. So, the risk of overheating is rising.
GRIFFETH: Well, I was just going to ask you about that, and that we just
heard Jan Hatzius of Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) say that we run that risk of
overheating the economy, right now, and you wonder what the Fed thinks
about that. Does this get them to rethink some of their future rate
ZANDI: Well, it`s a debate, but I do think the Fed has to normalize
interest rates consistently and probably more quickly than they think right
now, at least the average of that number. You know, they are expecting to
raise rates a couple of more times this year to three or four times next
year. I think that`s the very least we will see. I mean, you know, a low
3 percent unemployment rate, we`ve only been there two other times in
history and both those times we were in the middle of very large wars.
So, this is very rarified and risky territory. So, I think the Fed is
going to have to be aggressive and start raising rates more quickly.
HERERA: We`re going to talk more about this as we continue our program,
but the trade wars that were launched basically today. If they continue
for some time, what`s the economic impact on the job market and the economy
ZANDI: Sure, there`s no good in this. None at all. I mean, so far, the
tariffs in the grand scheme of things are not going to derail the economy.
They`re modest and they`ve cost some job, but, you know, this economy is
strong and they won`t derail them, but if we continue down this path and we
continue to raise the ante, put higher tariffs on more products and Chinese
and our trading partners retaliate, this is going to become a deal.
So, you know, this is something that we need to watch very, very carefully.
It`s now the most significant threat to the economic expansion — not yet –
– but the trend lines here do not look good.
GRIFFETH: Mark Zandi with Moody`s Analytics — always good to see you,
ZANDI: Thank you, Bill.
HERERA: And now to that other big story, trade. The gloves came off when
the U.S. imposed tariffs on billions of dollars worth of Chinese goods and
China immediately punched back.
Eunice Yoon reports tonight from Beijing.
EUNICE YOON, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Chinese authorities
say that Beijing had no choice, but to fend off what it has described as
the largest trade war in economic history. The foreign ministry confirmed
today that China retaliated with its own tariffs immediately after the
U.S.`s move. Customs officials are already collecting duties for 545 items
worth $34 billion, matching the amount subject to U.S. tariffs.
The targeted products include cash crop like soybeans and cars and the
commerce ministry also said it launched a complaint about the tariffs to
the World Trade Organization.
The Chinese move escalates what many fear could become a protracted trade
war. President Xi Jinping has not shown signs of wavering and President
Trump appeared to double down on his stance during his visit to Montana,
threatening tariffs that could cover all $540 million of goods imported
The Trump administration has said that the tariffs are meant to force
Beijing to make changes to its industrial policies and to open its markets.
However, many American companies are worried that the tariffs could come at
their expense. I`ve been speaking to AmCham president in China, Allan
Beebe, who said that anxiety is running very high among American companies
He said regulatory issues like inconsistent interpretation of the rules and
unclear laws have been the top challenge for U.S. companies here for the
past three years. His numbers fear that barriers will only get worse.
Companies, he says, are scrambling to come up with contingency plans and
re-assessing supply chains, reviewing pricing and questioning investment
He said 23 percent of his members have already been planning to move
manufacturing out of China because of cost. He said that this could
accelerate the process.
Looking ahead, Beebe said companies are worried about President Trump`s
threats could hit hundreds of billions of dollars of other Chinese-made
goods because more companies would be directly imported or as he put it,
there are fewer places to hide. Companies here are asking how long will
the trade war last and how it will all resolve itself because there`s
little sign that the two sides are having meaningful dialogue.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Eunice Yoon in Beijing.
GRIFFETH: And along those lines, the U.S. trade deficit in May narrowed to
its lowest level in 19 months, as exports rose to a record. But the
deficit with China did increase by more than 18 percent. America`s deficit
with the world`s second largest economy is the largest imbalance that we
have with any country as has been the case for several decades.
HERERA: Ford`s drop in China is intensifying. The automaker reported a 25
percent decline in sales in the first half. That`s the biggest first half
decline in that country ever. Ford is blaming the lack of new models.
Over the years, Ford has invested heavily in the world`s biggest auto
market. Ford exports a significant number of cars to China and could take
a hit by the Chinese tariffs that went into effect today.
GRIFFETH: So, on Wall Street, as we mentioned, stocks did advance as
investors cheered that jobs report, sort of shrugged off the trade
concerns, but we did fade a bit at the close. The Dow finished up 99
points to 24,456. Nasdaq gained 101, the S&P added 23. And for the week,
all of the major indexes traded higher.
HERERA: Shares of Biogen saw their biggest percentage gain in more than 14
years. This after the company released positive results on its
experimental Alzheimer`s drug. The study showed that at the highest
dosage, that drug slowed the progression of the disease. And while that is
promising, the chairman of the company says there is still more work to be
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STELIOS PAPADOPOULOS, BIOGEN CHAIRMAN: It`s not as if we improved the
condition or we stabilized the decline. It slowed down the decline. So,
it`s the first step. It`s an encouraging first step, but it`s only the
first step and we need to do a lot more.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERERA: The stock soared more than 19 percent, making it the best-
performing stock on the S&P 500 today.
GRIFFETH: Time to take a look at the upgrades and downgrades for this
We begin with Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL). Their price target was raised to $210
over Lood Capital. The analyst cited momentum in its business service and
another new iPhone expected to be introduced in the fall. The firm
maintained a buy rating on the stock. Shares rose more than 1 percent to
Advanced AutoParts saw its price target raise to $155 at Argus Research.
The firm cited the company`s ability to reduce costs and improve inventory
management. The rating remained the same at a buy. The stock was up about
1 percent to close at $137.17.
HERERA: Argus Research also downgraded shares of Carnival (NYSE:CCL)
Corporation to hold from buy. The analyst cites fuel costs for headwinds
and what it called unimpressive advanced bookings. The firm lowered its
full year 2018 earnings estimates. Despite the downgrade, though, the
stock rose 1 percent to $57.55.
Shares of Gannett (NYSE:GCI) were downgraded to underweight from neutral at
JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM). That is the first sell equivalent rating on that
stock in about two years. The analyst cites ongoing weakness in print
advertising. The price target is $10. The stock closed right around that
level at $10.28.
GRIFFETH: Still ahead, a new type of whiskey sour.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CONTESSA BREWER, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Kentucky bourbon
distillers slapped with a 25 percent tariff from China and now, they`re
bracing for a trade war hangover.
I`m Contessa Brewer in Louisville, Kentucky. I have more coming up on
NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRIFFETH: Elon Musk is sending a team of engineers to Thailand to assist
in the rescue of that boy`s soccer team trapped in a cave there. The Thai
government confirmed that Musk`s engineers will arrive tomorrow. They may
provide services for location tracking, water pumping or battery power.
The team and its coach were reported missing late last month as you know.
They were found earlier this week deep in a cave where the passageways are
narrow and flooded with water.
HERERA: Satellite company EchoStar (NASDAQ:SATS) drops its bid for a
European rival and that is where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus”.
EchoStar (NASDAQ:SATS) said it won`t continue to pursue U.K. -based
Inmarsat after that company rejected a $3 billion takeover offer saying it
undervalued the company. EchoStar (NASDAQ:SATS) shares traded higher by
nearly 2 percent to $46.30.
JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) is denying a report by a German publication that it`s
interested in taking a stake in Deutsche Bank. Shares of Deutsche Bank
initially rose as much as 6 percent on the news but lost half of those
gains, finishing up nearly 3 percent to $11.46. Meanwhile, JPMorgan
(NYSE:JPM) shares were up a fraction to $104.06.
GRIFFETH: A “Washington Post (NYSE:WPO)” report found that Twitter has
stepped up its efforts to crack down on fake accounts. It has suspended
more than 70 million accounts just since May, but “The Post” did point out
that the post did eat into the monthly active user growth which is closely
watched by Wall Street. Shares were initially lower after that report, but
did reverse course and finished up 3.5 percent to $46.65.
BJ Wholesale`s credit rating was upgraded by Moody`s after the company used
the proceeds for its June 28th IPO to pay down debt. The firm says the
company`s operating performance does continue to improve and shares of BJ`s
were off a fraction to $23.65.
HERERA: This week`s market monitor likes growth stocks with strong
dividends. He is Oliver Pursche. He`s the chief market strategist at
Oliver, welcome back. Nice to see you again.
OLIVER PURSCHE, BRUDERMAN BROTHERS CHIEF MARKET STRATEGIST: Thanks for
HERERA: It sounds like the perfect combination. Growth plus dividend,
PURSCHE: Well, yes, and nothing is ever perfect, especially not in this
environment, but you know, the economy continues to be strong. Mark Zandi,
I think, made some very good comments earlier in the program and, you know,
so we like growth stocks, but we also like fortress-like balance sheets, so
these mega-cap companies, large-cap companies, and we always like dividends
and in particular companies that have a history of growing their dividends.
So, that`s something that we focus on.
GRIFFETH: All right. We`re going to be hearing some familiar names here
from you, starting with FedEx (NYSE:FDX).
PURSCHE: Yes. So, FedEx (NYSE:FDX), a great company. They`re very well-
positioned. There`s a number of events going on with FedEx (NYSE:FDX),
including that, you know, UPS.
And one of its main competitors is struggling a little bit. They`re facing
the potential of the union crisis. You`ve got President Trump waging a war
against Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) that may drive business away from the U.S.
Postal Service to FedEx (NYSE:FDX) and UPS.
And overall, you`re seeing a lot more shipments going from online retailers
and that, of course, benefits all shippers. So we like FedEx (NYSE:FDX).
It`s a strong balance sheet. It`s got good growth prospect. The dividend
is somewhat low, but we think it`s going to rise over time and that makes
the stock attractive to us.
HERERA: Second pick is Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL). Rising dividend and stock
buybacks, as well.
PURSCHE: Yes, enormous amount of stock share buybacks. As a matter of
fact, on that note, first quarter saw the largest amount of share buybacks
in history across the board for S&P 500 constituents and technology led the
way there, almost accounting for a third of all share buybacks.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has announced significant share buybacks. It`s
announced a dividend raise and it`s got lots of cash on hand. And one
thing that is being underappreciated and almost ignored by the market is
any potential innovation. It`s kind of being looked at as an old, tired
company a little bit. We don`t think it is and we think there`s a lot of
GRIFFETH: And, finally, a similar story that you`ve been telling us, but a
different name. This time, it`s Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX).
PURSCHE: Yes, Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX) is very, very well positioned. Again,
as the economy continues to grow, unemployment continues to drop, more
payroll processing, strong growth story, they`ve been raising dividends and
we expect that to continue through the year and into next year, and that is
a big positive for Paychex (NASDAQ:PAYX).
HERERA: Have a great weekend, Oliver. Good to see you again.
PURSCHE: Thank you.
HERERA: Oliver Pursche with Bruderman Brothers.
GRIFFETH: America`s whisky industry is not immune from the trade fight
that we`ve been talking about. It faces a 25 percent tariff from China on
top of those already levied by Europe, Mexico and Canada. And states like
Tennessee and Kentucky that rely the most on whiskey from revenue are
getting hit the hardest.
Contessa Brewer is in Louisville, Kentucky, for us tonight.
BREWER: At Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company, tourists belly up to the
bar to sample sips of bourbon crafted on site. This fifth-generation,
family-owned business has big plans for growth.
CARSON TAYLOR, KY PEERLESS DISTILLING PRESIDENT: We plan on being in, you
know, six to seven countries in the next couple of years. So, we`re
constantly expanding what we do.
BREWER: But new tariffs are throwing a wrench in the works or perhaps the
bug into bourbon.
FRED MINNICK, WHISKEY EXPERT & AUTHOR: Right now, there`s more than a
billion dollars of investment in Kentucky bourbon and a lot of that
investment is coming to Kentucky because people are very excited about
BREWER: Fred Minnick wrote “Bourbon: The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of
American Whiskey”. He says bourbon is the last, true, signature industry
for this state.
MINNICK: When someone thinks of Kentucky, they`re not thinking about fried
chicken anymore. They`re thinking about Kentucky bourbon. When you start
tariffing it, when you start, you kwon, taking away jobs and hurting it
from being exported to Spain, to the United Kingdom, to Mexico, to Canada,
wherever, you`re essentially gut-punching the state of Kentucky.
BREWER: The tariffs won`t just hurt the distillers in Kentucky. In this
state, more than 17,000 jobs rely on some way on the whisky industry.
Those are grain farmers, the manufacturers of glass and of those barrels.
Also, the entrepreneurs who are building their bourbon tourism businesses.
KAITLYN SOLIGAN OWENS, MATSON & GILMAN CO-FOUNDER: Bourbon is at a
critical moment right now.
BREWER: Kaitlyn Soligan and Nicole Stipp launched Matson and Gilman, a
luxury tourism company that specializes in bourbon experiences. They worry
about the trickledown effect of tariffs, forcing the big bourbon businesses
to contract and potentially putting the small craft distillers out of
NICOLE STIPP, MATSON & GILMAN CO-FOUNDER: Damaging bourbon`s ability to
reach a global audience is immediately going to damage businesses like us
trying to attract those tourists.
BREWER: Brown Foreman owns famous brands like Woodford Reserve, Jack
Daniels and Old Forester. It says China is important to its business. And
American whiskey companies are chipping away at Scots whiskey`s dominance
there, doubling their Chinese market share in five years to 9 percent.
In fact, globally, Kentucky whiskey exports are skyrocketing, up 23 percent
in just a year to $450 million last year, but now, 65 percent of those
exports are subject to retaliatory tariffs. And for tiny distiller
Peerless which has just launched its international business, there`s a lot
TAYLOR: I have two boys. You know, hopefully, they want to be distillers.
You know, being sixth generation. So, we`re not just building this as the
next place to sell out to one of the big players. What we do and how we
export and how build this business plan now definitely affects our future.
BREWER: For now, Kentucky distillers are bracing for whatever hangover a
lengthy trade war brings.
In Louisville, Kentucky, Contessa Brewer, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
HERERA: Coming up, an entrepreneur designed lamp shades that you can grow,
and it helped her grow a business. That`s tonight`s “Bright Idea”, next.
GRIFFETH: Here`s what to watch for next week. On Monday, President Trump
is expected to announce his nominee for the Supreme Court justice, a
decision that could impact business, of course. On Tuesday, executives
from the world`s biggest media and tech companies gather in Sun Valley at
the exclusive Allen and Company Conference. And on Friday, a number of
major banks report earnings including Dow component JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM)
Chase, and that`s all that we`re watching for coming up next week.
HERERA: Well, when we talk about drawing energy from Mother Nature, we
usually think about solar or wind. But there are lots of ways to do that.
Natural energy can be used to make things, as well, and that`s how one
entrepreneur in Brooklyn, New York, got the bright idea to use energy
produced by mushroom roots. Yep, it`s called mycelium to make lamp shades.
HERERA: In her Brooklyn design studio, Danielle Trofe is looking for
answers to a lot of what-ifs.
DANIELLE TROFE, DANIELLE TROFE DESIGN: What if all of our goods could be
HERERA: In 2014, she discovered mycelium, the root of the mushroom. It
was being used to Ecovative, a company in Upstate New York to create a
packaging material that would be friendlier to the environment than
Styrofoam. Trofe wondered what else it could do.
TROFE: I`m into the school biomimicry. It`s looking at nature`s form or
function ecosystem and emulating the deep patterns and principles.
HERERA: Mycelium are the fungus fibers that transport nutrients and water
under the forest floor. As they grew and multiplied, Trofe learned the
mycelium combine things together. Here, she`s hemp mixed with mycelium to
TROFE: This would grow over the course of four to five days.
HERERA: When it comes out of the mold, it dries and then it`s baked.
TROFE: It kills the living organism so it won`t sprout mushrooms. It
won`t spore or create allergens and it will basically be a safe, inert
HERERA: It is also lightweight. Extremely fire resistant and inspired by
TROFE: The original design which is this very iconic mushroom-like. So,
it`s the table lamp that actually looks like a mushroom. It was the
jumping off point.
HERERA: Trofe took her idea of Ecovative, hoping to put their technology
into the hands of individual consumers, growing their own lampshades. But
as she began to get the word out at trade shows, commercial buyers became
her first big customers. The one hotel, Brooklyn Bridge, put one 130 of
Trofe`s lamp shades in the living room of its fanciest suite.
WAAD EL HADIDY, SH GROUP DESIGN DIRECTOR: We wanted it to look like a
cloud that flowed nicely that invited people to touch.
HERERA: Waad El Hadidy is the design director for SH Group at Starwood
Capital. Their one hotel chain features sustainable designs like floors
made from reclaimed wood, designs that need large scale adoption, the kind,
a 200-room hotel can provide before they can have a positive impact on both
the environment and the bottom line.
HADIDY: Across that number of rooms, it starts to create momentum and
starts to impact the industry at scale.
TROFE: We love to work with commercial projects. We grew all 130 lamp
shades publicly, in the gallery phase, somebody had walked in during that
time and watched the growing process and learned about it.
HERERA: On track to become profitable this year, Trofe was able to stop
bartending in 2017, the same year she partnered with Ecovative to introduce
a do-it-yourself mushroom lamp called grow. It costs about $100, a lot
less than some of her higher-end lighting. Just add water, and in a few
days, you`ll have a new lamp just because she asked what if?
TROFE: You`re seeing this next generation of designers that are coming
into product design that are bringing this ethos and this respect of nature
and the finite resources that we have here on this planet.
HERERA: We can assure you that Danielle Trofe likes to eat mushrooms, as
well, but she won`t tell us what kind of mushrooms are used in the lamp
shades. That`s a heavily guarded secret, as the type and the materials
it`s mixed with can affect the texture, the strength and weight of the
Ecovative is also using mycelium to make biofabricated furniture, building
materials, and even leather-like consumer goods.
Finally tonight, a Statue of Liberty stamp could cost the Postal Service
$3.5 million. The Postal Service mistook a replica image of the Statue of
Liberty for the real thing. The wrong image was used on the Lady Liberty
forever stamp back in 2010, that you`re looking at there. The image use
was actually the Statue of Liberty replica at the New York New York Casino
in Las Vegas.
So, now, a federal court has ruled that the Post Office violated the
copyright of the replica`s artist and they must pay him damages.
HERERA: All right. Before we go, let`s take a final look at the day on
Wall Street. The Dow rose 99 points, the Nasdaq gained 101, the S&P 500
added 23. For the week, all of the major indexes were higher.
And that will do it for us tonight. I`m Sue Herera. Thanks for joining
GRIFFETH: I`m Bill Griffeth. Have a wonderful weekend. We`ll see you
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