ANNOUNCER: This is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT with Bill Griffeth and Sue Herera.
BILL GRIFFETH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Hitting the gas. The largest East Coast refinery is shutting down. And that could send gasoline prices higher just before the July 4th holiday.
What`s next? With stocks near record levels, where the market heat up this summer? The options market may be giving us a clue.
And, streaming wars. Hollywood heavyweights are pulling their shows and movies from Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), which leads to questions about Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) future.
Those stories and much more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for this Wednesday, June the 26th.
And we bid you good evening, everybody, and welcome. Sue is off tonight.
The next big driver for stocks could take place a world away from Wall Street in Japan at the site of the G-20 Summit later this week. That`s where President Trump and Chinese President Xi will be meeting to discuss trade. Analysts call it an important moment in the trade dispute between the two largest economies in the world.
And today, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said the two countries are close to a deal.
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STEVEN MNUCHIN, TREASURY SECRETARY: I`m hopeful that we see a deal, but there needs to be the right efforts in place and this isn`t, you know, a deal for having the sake of a deal. We were about 90 percent of the way there. I think there`s a path to complete this. But we`ll see what we`ll get.
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GRIFFETH: Market watchers know we`ve heard comments like that before, which may be why after initial excitement this morning, reaction ended up being muted. The Dow was down 11 points, we`re at 26,536. Nasdaq was up 25. The S&P slid by three, falling for a fourth straight day.
Actually the real action today was in the energy market. Gasoline futures moved higher when it was announced that refinery outside Philadelphia had exploded last Friday. It`s going to be permanently shut down.
It was the largest and oldest refinery on the East Coast, accounted for nearly 30 percent of that region`s refining capacity. Today, gasoline futures rose nearly 5 percent on that news and that in turn gave shares of rival refiners a lift and the price of oil settled above $59 a barrel today, thanks to a report pointing to a massive decline in supplies.
Joining us with his analysis and outlook tonight, John Kilduff, from Again Capital is back with us here.
Good to see you. Welcome back.
JOHN KILDUFF, AGAIN CAPITAL FOUNDING PARTNER: Good evening, Bill. Thank you.
GRIFFETH: That refinery is in one of the most densely populated parts of the country. This has got to hurt at some point, yes?
KILDUFF: We`re not quite as bad off as California continues to be, but we have become a close second. I will tell you, Bill, that the refining industry in the East Coast and Gulf Coast has actually gotten a little overbuilt over the past number of years.
KILDUFF: Yes and a number of these refineries including this one, were scheduled to be marked off several years ago. The private equity took a look at them. The $100 a barrel plus oil environment, got a gold rush going, and that`s why they have a second life now. Notice you don`t really recognize the names of these refineries, like PBF owns one of them. This is Philadelphia Energy Solutions.
KILDUFF: Again, typical sort of private equity name. Not Exxon, not Shell, not Valero.
GRIFFETH: Are you saying that we may not see much of a change in the price of gasoline because of this going offline?
KILDUFF: That`s right. I believe — it couldn`t come at a worse time because, of course, we`re heading into the peak weeks here around the Fourth of July.
KILDUFF: This is Black Friday for the industry. But yes. The answer to that question is yes, the pipeline capacity out of the Gulf Coast, the ability of Gulf Coast refineries to barge up gasoline to the region also, too, European refiners.
When the window opens as we call it, when the price of gasoline gets geared near a high, on the East Coast, the barrels find their way. So, there will be pain.
GRIFFETH: Short-term at least, yes.
KILDUFF: Short term at least pain. And there maybe a higher floor for prices going forward. But this is an industry that`s highly competitive, and again, there still needs to be more rationalization or more mothballing of some refineries so ensure profitability. There was just a gasoline glut nationally, Bill, as recently as February.
Very quickly. Another pop in the price of oil today, this after that recent big gain of 9 percent, week over week. Is it still jitters about geopolitics or what`s going on here?
KILDUFF: It`s been a slew of things. Obviously, the Iran tensions are front and center. Actually, the hopes for maybe a trade deal, or hope — are ramping up demand prospects again, that`s helping. But also too, we`re in a period now where U.S. crude oil inventories are declining at a rapid rate because of refiners ramping up to meet the summer demand season here for gasoline. So, that too is just making a sort of witch`s brew of higher prices for now.
GRIFFETH: John Kilduff of Again Capital, always good to see you. Thanks.
KILDUFF: Thank you, Bill.
GRIFFETH: See you later. And there are just two more trading days left in the second quarter this year and a noticeable trend is taking shape. Bob Pisani has details for us tonight from the New York Stock Exchange.
BOB PISANI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: We`re going to wrap up the second quarter and the S&P has rallied about 3 percent, but the gains are far from being evenly distributed, just a handful of super large cap stocks leading charge. Mid caps are flat, small caps are down.
Call it a triumph of indexing. A few companies have gotten so big, they are essentially the stock market. Well, maybe when the markets do well.
We told you this before. Five of the largest stocks in the S&P are responsible for about third of the index gains this quarter: Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Disney (NYSE:DIS) among them. Of course, some other very large companies, Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) and Exxon and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) parent Alphabet suffered losses in the second quarter, but investors are continuing to pay off for growth wherever they can find, and that`s primarily in technology.
So, here`s a simple way to look at how dominant these big cap stocks have become. Supposed the 50 largest stocks in the S&P were up 1 percent on the quarter and all the rest, 450, down 1 percent. You think with 50 stocks up, 450 down, the S&P would down, right? Wrong, the S&P would be flat. That`s how powerful these big names have become. That`s how much the world is willing to pay for growth at any price.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Bob Pisani at the New York Stock Exchange.
GRIFFETH: So where does the market go next? That question is always on the minds of investors an tonight, we look to the options market for some answers because options are a good gauge of investor sentiment and perhaps good forecaster of future market moves as well.
Jon Najarian of the Najarian Family Office, himself a long time options trader for more than 30 years I think. He joins us tonight from the New York Stock Exchange.
Jon, always good to see you. Thanks for joining us.
JON NAJARIAN, NAJARIAN FAMILY OFFICE: Very good and always good to be on with you, Bill. Thank you.
GRIFFETH: Quick primer of options and how they work.
NAJARIAN: Sure. Well, an option is really just an upside in the call options. That`s what we`ll discuss, are upside bets that the market will go higher, whether it`s for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) or whether it`s the S&P 500. When it`s trading at a certain level, if somebody thinks that the level it goes to is up here, Bill, they`ll buy the calls up at that strike because if they`re right, those calls can make them 50 percent, 100 percent.
The returns are astronomical because the leverage bet and some of the biggest players on the street use options every day.
GRIFFETH: And you`re seeing a lot of call buying at higher levels right now, aren`t you?
NAJARIAN: We are. So, that gives me some optimism about President Trump and Xi when they meet in a summit out in Japan. I have seen short-dated call-buying. Again, if the levels here and they`re buying up here, Bill, that`s bullish. They`re also buying way up here.
So in other words, there are some bets that the market will rise in the short-term over the next week or so, 1 to 2 percent. That`s not extraordinary.
NAJARIAN: But out there a month into the future and more, there are bets the market rise between 7 and 10 percent as we go into September, and that`s a little bit of outperformance if you will, going into what are normally summer doldrums. And I guess those are bets based on a positive outcome between our president and the president of China.
GRIFFETH: And I would remind everybody that — I mean, you know, we had a tough month of May in the stock market, but we had a very — have had a very good month of June, the best in decades here. Are we getting a little overbought perhaps do you think at this point?
NAJARIAN: Well, we`re right back up against resistance level, Bill. So when you look back at a six month chart for instance, you`ll see that we have topped out and hit and hit resistance, which is what technical folks call it. When you are underneath a level and you trade up there, but you can`t breakthrough. That`s upside resistance.
We have hit this a couple of times, but now the bets are we`re going to break through that especially in the summer and that would be something that would really put a booster on the markets and on your returns this year.
GRIFFETH: So the options market is bullish right now. All right.
NAJARIAN: Yes, sir.
GRIFFETH: Jon Najarian, always good to see you. Thanks, bud.
NAJARIAN: Likewise. Thank you, Bill.
GRIFFETH: See you later.
Elsewhere, investors got new information on the economy today. Orders for long lasting American goods fell more than expected In May. According to the Commerce Department, durable goods orders dropped 1.3 percent. That was much of the decline due to aircraft orders which economists attributed to the grounding of Boeing (NYSE:BA) 737 Max jets.
But within that report, a gauge of business investment did perk up. Some say that`s a sign companies have not necessarily halted spending amid the trade fight with China.
Time to take a look at some of today`s “Upgrades and Downgrades”.
We begin with shares of ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) tonight. They were upgraded to buy from neutral at Mizuho. The analyst cited improving margins and declining costs. Price target now $80. Shares rose 5 percent today to $62.75.
Micron Technology (NASDAQ:MU) was upgraded to buy from hold at Needham. The analyst says that the company`s earnings per share may be bottoming in light of its latest earnings report which we told you about yesterday. Price target now $50. Shares rose 13 percent to $37.04.
Stage Street was downgraded to neutral from buy at UBS. The analyst cited little confidence in when the company will be able to get past some of its headwinds. Price target $58. That stock fell more than 11 percent today to $55.24.
Changes are coming to Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX). The streaming video service is going to lose its number one show in 2021 when NBCUniversal moves “The Office” to its own platform. In a tweet today, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) said we are sad that NBC has decided to take “The Office” back for its own streaming platform, but members can binge-watch the show to their heart`s content ad free on Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) until January of 2021.
You know, competition in video streaming is growing. NBCUniversal, which produces this program, is just one of many Hollywood powerhouses developing their own service. And that could mean even more shows leaving Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX).
Joining us tonight is Tuna Amobi, senior media and entertainment analyst at CFRA Research.
Tuna, good to see you.
TUNA AMOBI, CFRA RESEARCH SENIOR MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT ANALYST: Likewise, Bill. Good afternoon.
GRIFFETH: And Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) has already lost the Disney (NYSE:DIS) library. Disney`s own streaming platform gets underway in just a few months here. Are we going to see more of a migration away from pioneer streaming Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)?
AMOBI: Absolutely. I think that`s the way that the trend has been unfolding. And this is, by the way, inevitable consequence of the streaming wars.
I think all these studios are trying to strike a balance between, you know, having some of the most popular, you know, offerings, available for their own direct to consumer platforms, and also not foregoing too much revenues from third party platform such as Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), which for top shows like “Office” can run to potentially $100 million per year.
So that`s not a very easy balance to strike, and that`s what see a lot of studios grappling with as they look to kind of launch their own direct to consumer platforms.
GRIFFETH: Early in the streaming, there was a lot of collaboration going on. Hulu was a good example of that. Now, everybody wants their own service, don`t they?
So, does that mean prices for production are going to go up even more as the competition heats up?
AMOBI: Indeed. I think that`s been the trend. I mean, look at what`s happening now where Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) is battling with the top studios for some of the talent. Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) is trying to have a direct relationship with a lot of this talent because they`ve seen the handwriting on the wall. So, they want to kind of buffer their own original shows —
AMOBI: — and be able to have direct relationships.
So, to your question, you know, we`re still in the early beginnings of this war and constant spending continues to rise. And with companies like Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and others also jumping many, I mean, this is really kind of an ideal, you know, confluence of events for — if you`re kind of a sought- after Hollywood talent.
GRIFFETH: So, on the one hand, they`re going to be spending more on content, but they`re going to be charging less because there will be a price war going at the same time. This is going to be interesting to see how this plays out when it finally gets going here.
Tuna Amobi with CFRA Research, thanks for joining us tonight.
AMOBI: Thank you.
GRIFFETH: Coming up, why health care is the number one issue on the minds of voters ahead of the first Democratic presidential debate.
GRIFFETH: Of course, the next presidential election is more than a year away, but that first debate of Democratic candidates is tonight and one of the top issues among voters is one we discuss often here on NBR. That would be health care.
Ylan Mui is at the site of the debate tonight in Miami for us.
YLAN MUI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Twenty candidates are here in Miami for two nights of presidential debates and they`re going to cover a lot of ground.
Elizabeth Warren is a front-runner among the candidates appearing tonight, but Cory Booker and Beto O`Rourke are hoping to change that dynamic. Tomorrow, it`s all about whether anyone can steal the spotlight from Joe Biden.
Sharing the stage with him will be Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris (NYSE:HRS) and Pete Buttigieg.
What issues do voters want them to tackle?
We asked a few to find out.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Obviously, health care. Make health care more affordable for small businesses.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What the plans are for health care and how we can modify the system we have.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want to know about health care, people of my age. You know, what`s going to happen with the elderly people. You know, you stop work. We can`t work until we go in the grave.
MUI: Health care, it dominated the midterm elections and it`s still at the top of the agenda for voters.
The latest poll from Morning Consult shows that 22 percent of Democrats want the candidates to talk about it during the debates. That includes Medicare-for-All, abortion and expanding Medicaid. The economy ranked second at 19 percent. Taxes, wages, jobs, government spending, they all fall under that umbrella, but with an employment rate at a 30-year low and the economy growing at 3 percent, many voters don`t think those need fixing.
Americans generally approve of the way president Trump is handling the economy, 51 to 43 percent according to the Real Clear Politics polling average. That`s making Democrats message a little tricky.
DAVID WESSEL, HERITAGE FOUNDATION: Obviously, the economy is doing well and people aren`t feeling it. So they will be speaking to people who feel insecure — people who have a lot of student debt, people worried about health insurance costs, people in communities aren`t doing well. So, they will appeal to people who are worried.
MUI: The next two nights will give the candidates a chance to find out if that argument will resonate with America.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Ylan Mui in Miami.
GRIFFETH: And as Ylan mentioned, another big issue for voters is taxes with many candidates proposing a number of issues — wealth, taxes, higher top rates.
John Harwood is also in Miami for us tonight.
John, the president got his tax cut passed two year ago. Where do you see the Democratic candidates taking the tax debate from here?
JOHN HARWOOD, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Well, they`re going on offense with it, Bill. This is an unusual situation because you`ve got a range of tax increases — you mentioned wealth taxes, estate taxes, higher top rates, higher corporate rates. All those things Democrats feel embolden to take up now in ways that they simply haven`t done before and we`re going to get a range of disagreement on that score in the debate stage tonight and tomorrow night.
GRIFFETH: Yes. Talk about some of the differences that exist within the Democratic Party on some of these issues, on taxes specifically.
HARWOOD: Well, Elizabeth Warren is the most aggressive. She has a wealth tax, a 2 percent tax on varying high amounts of accumulated wealth and 3 percent if it`s over a billion dollars. That`s something that other more moderate candidates have not embraced. So, that`s a point of disagreement.
She`s also got a minimum corporate tax for large corporations. She wants to put 7 percent on corporate profits above $100 million to try to get money from corporations like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) that have not been paying it. Other Democrats have a more muted approach to that.
So, really, you`ve got Bernie Sanders, the Elizabeth Warren, the more aggressive people in terms of tackling income and equality. People like Joe Biden, Amy Klobuchar, Cory Booker, who are much more cautious there. And that`s going to be highlighted in these debate stages.
GRIFFETH: Is it still the economy this time?
HARWOOD: The economy is not likely to drive the issue overall. But I do think it will be a differentiator within the Democratic primary in terms of how aggressive do Democratic voters want to be versus beating Donald Trump. Donald Trump is the backdrop for the entire election. He drove the midterm campaigns. Ylan mentioned in that piece that —
HARWOOD: — health care was a big part of it. But Donald Trump, his personality, his style of operating, that is going to be the dominant issue when we get to November 2020.
GRIFFETH: John Harwood in Miami — thanks, John. Good to see you.
HARWOOD: You bet.
GRIFFETH: Elsewhere, people splurge on their pets, but not their snacks and that hits General Mills (NYSE:GIS).
That`s where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus” with the maker of Cheerios missing revenue estimates as sales were hurt by lower snack demand in the North American market. The bright spot, though, was the company`s Blue Buffalo pet products business. That had growth of 38 percent.
Shares of General Mills (NYSE:GIS) fell nearly 4.5 percent, though, today to $51.31.
BlackBerry posted better than expected earnings, but revenue was short of forecast. The miss was due to slow sales in its software and services unit. The communications software company did benefit, though, from its purpose of cybersecurity firm Cylance. Blackberry shares dropped nearly 9 percent today to $7.56.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is buying self-driving start up Drive.ai. That was on the verge of shutting down. Drive.ai, once valued at $200 million, planned to close Friday and lay off all 90 workers. Price of the deal was not disclosed. Shares of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) were up more than 2 percent to $199.80.
Schnitzer Steel beat analysts` expectations, but the recycled metal maker and exporter saw sales drop due to a decline in its auto and metal recycling segment as well as its cascade steel and scrap business. The shares did rise more than 5 percent to $25.82.
And then after the bell, KB Home (NYSE:KBH) beat expectations with the home builder seeing an increase in deliveries and average closing prices. Shares initially rose in afterhours trading, but they did close the regular session down more than 1 percent to $23.53.
At a time when there`s a lot of focus on the pay gap between men and women, this next headline certainly is going to get your attention. Women CEOs are out-earning their male counterparts, but there`s a lot more to the story.
Leslie Picker takes a closer look at the results of a new study.
LESLIE PICKER, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: There`s at least one place where women are making more than men, in the C suite. Women CEOs among America`s biggest companies took home a median pay of more than $13 million in 2018. That compared with a $12 million that male CEOs took home.
In fact, by that measure, women chief executives have made more than their male counterparts over the last five years. That`s according to new Equilar study which looks at base salary, bonus, stock-based compensation and benefits.
But there are several factors that skew those numbers. For one, small sample size. The study looked at the 500 largest companies by revenue and there were only 21 female CEOs or just over 4 percent of data set. Additionally, women tend to run larger companies.
In 2018, the median market cap for a woman-run business was about $22.5 billion. For men, it was $16 billion. Typically, the larger the company, the higher the compensation.
And lastly, compared with the median male CEO, women tend to have a slightly greater portion of their compensation tied to performance. So, it would make sense that in a rising market environment, women would take home more. Overall compensation has grown 25 percent over the last five years in part due to that rising tide.
Only one woman managed to crack the top 10 list of highest paid CEOs last year. Safra Catz of Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) made more than $100 million behind Tesla`s Elon Musk, Discovery`s David Zaslav, and Catz`s co-CEO at Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), Mark Hurd.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Leslie Picker.
GRIFFETH: And coming up, a major American city moves to ban e-cigarettes.
GRIFFETH: Here`s what we`re watching tomorrow.
Dow components Nike (NYSE:NKE) and Walgreens will be reporting their earnings. The third and final reading, the first quarter GDP is due out, estimates are for growth of 3.1 percent and the Fed releases the second part of its bank stress test. Those results will determine potential dividend increases and shared buybacks. And that`s what we`re watching for on Thursday.
Delta Airlines (NYSE:DAL) is allowing passengers now to change or cancel travel plans to the Dominican Republic without the usual penalties. The flights covered by that new waiver are those going to and from Punta Cana, where several American tourists have died in the last year. The airlines said the decision was made in light of those recent events.
Other airlines have said that they will work with passengers on a case by case basis and as we`ve been reporting, flight cancellations to and from the Caribbean island are rising and new bookings have fallen sharply.
J.P. Morgan is increasing its investment in Detroit. The bank is adding another $500 million to the already $200 million they`ve invested in the city. The money will go toward loan programs for small business, job training programs, access to affordable housing and financial health programs.
San Francisco City officials voted last night to ban the sale of e- cigarettes in that city. The bill still needs to be signed by the mayor, but that sent shares of Altria and British American tobacco lower in part because it leads to questions of whether other cities will follow. And what that could mean for industry that`s grown into a multibillion dollar business.
Aditi Roy has more for us tonight.
ADITI ROY, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: San Francisco is taking a stand against the e-cigarette industry with the decision to ban sales of the vaping products. The measure would prohibit all sales of e cigarette products to anyone living in San Francisco. That includes online sales. The irony, Juul, which owns three quarters of the e-cigarette market is headquartered in San Francisco.
The company`s response of the vote was swift. In a statement, Juul says this full prohibition will drive former adult smokers who successfully switched to vapor products back to deadly cigarettes, deny the opportunity to switch for current adult smokers and create a thriving black market instead of addressing the actual causes of underage access and use.
Some groups say San Francisco`s move is a sign that the FDA hasn`t acted strongly enough against the industry as a whole. A spokesperson for the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids says San Francisco`s action is a reflection of its frustration with the FDA`s failure to react.
The FDA has proposed draft guidelines, putting restrictions on retailers and manufacturers to curb the teen vaping epidemic. Last fall, then commissioner Scott Gottlieb ordered five manufacturers of e-cigarettes, including, Juul, Imperial Brands and British American Tobacco to come up with solutions to the problem.
And some big tobacco companies are pushing for legislation, which would raise the minimum age to buy tobacco products to 21. While it`s unclear whether more cities will follow, some believe it adds pressure on regulators and lawmakers to take tougher action against e-cigarette makers and retailers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You see other cities that share San Francisco`s values may want to do that. Like I wouldn`t be surprised if you have to see some more progressive cities do the same thing.
ROY: Juul for its part is backing an alternative proposal in San Francisco. A voter initiative which will put tougher restrictions on selling vapor products to use that stop short of a total ban.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Aditi Roy, San Francisco.
GRIFFETH: And before we go, a final look at the day on Wall Street, kind of a quiet day with the Dow down just 11 points, Nasdaq up 25, the S&P slid by three, falling for a fourth straight day.
That is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for tonight. I`m Bill Griffeth. Thanks so much for watching, everybody. Have a great evening. See you tomorrow.
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