ANNOUNCER: This is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT with Sue Herera and Bill Griffeth.
SUE HERERA, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Mega merger cleared. Sprint and T-Mobile`s $26 billion deal gets the blessing of the Justice Department and it could usher in a new era for the wireless industry.
BILL GRIFFETH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR: Don`t bet against the consumer. Spending is powering the economy which grew at a slightly faster pace than expected in second quarter.
HERERA: From the battlefield to boardroom. How business boot camps are helping female veterans become entrepreneurs.
Those stories and more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Friday, July 26th.
GRIFFETH: And we do bid you good evening, everybody, and welcome.
Well, the S&P and the Nasdaq closed at record highs today. We`ll have more on that in a moment.
But we begin with that on-again, off again merger of Sprint and T-Mobile
which now appears to be very much on. After years of intense regulatory
scrutiny, the Justice Department today approved the $26 billion deal which
brings together the nation`s third and fourth largest wireless providers.
That news sent shares of both companies higher today, even though the
approval comes with conditions.
Ylan Mui reports for us tonight from Washington.
YLAN MUI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: The Department of Justice giving the green light to the $26 billion merger between T-Mobile and Sprint, but forcing the companies to sell some assets as part of this deal. Under the agreement, Sprint will have to sell its prepaid business to Dish and divest Spectrum to Dish.
Also, the companies will have to make at least 20,000 sale sites and
hundreds of retail stores available to Dish. Dish would also have access
to T-Mobile`s network for seven years.
Assistant Attorney General Megan Delrahim said that without this remedy,
the merger would substantially harm competition. And this settlement sets
up Dish as a disruptive force in wireless. This agreement has gotten by in
some five state attorney generals including Nebraska, Kansas, Ohio,
Oklahoma and South Dakota.
Still, the merger is pushing push back from a separate group of state
A.G.s. 13 states and the District of Columbia have filed an ongoing
lawsuit to block this merger.
MARCELO CLAURE, SPRINT EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN: I`m really hoping that this doesn’t turn into a political fight, that the state attorney generals are able to see the deal, on how good this is going to be for their state, how
good it`s going to be for their constituents.
MUI: And it is important to know that the merger cannot be finalized until
the case is resolved. Currently, a trial date is scheduled for October 7th
but that could get delayed.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Ylan Mui in Washington.
HERERA: So, how might the Sprint/T-Mobile deal reshape the wireless
Joining us now to talk about that is Jonathan Chaplin. He`s managing
partner at New Street Research.
Welcome, Jonathan. Nice to have you here.
JONATHAN CHAPLIN, NEW STREET RESEARCH MANAGING PARTNER: Thanks for having
HERERA: You say this ushers in and paves the way for, quote, real
disruption. How do you see that playing out?
CHAPLIN: It does. What the deal does if he goes through, and bear in mind
we still have a fight with the tats here and it is somewhat in the balance,
but if it goes through and Dish ends up building a network, you will have
two networks with a tremendous amount of capacity on them, with a very,
very low unit cost. That is a recipe for disruption.
So, to put it in perspective, between T-Mobile and Dish, they will have 65
percent of the industry`s capacity. Dish has no revenue in wireless today
except what they buy from Sprint. T-mobile and Sprint including what they sell to Dish has about 30 percent of the industry`s revenues, so they have
the opportunity to effectively double the share they have in the industry.
Because they`ve got all of this excess capacity and a very low cost, and
that spells the — that spells out disruption in our view.
GRIFFETH: All right. But the 13 states that still disapprove of this are
worried about job loss and higher prices for consumers. Do they have a
CHAPLIN: They do to some extent. If what they`re worried about is how
real Dish is as a new entrant. Dish has been sitting on the pilot
capacity, pilot spectrum for half a decade and done nothing with it. They
have made a lot of promises in the context of this deal that should
hopefully compel them to finally build a network, put it to use and get
into the business.
That`s what the fight in the courts is going to be about. It is about how
real Dish is, how much can we trust them to follow through on their
commitments. But if they do, things are going to get really, really
interesting in the wireless industry. Consumers ought to be big
In fact, any business that has a product or service that`s delivered over a
network ought to ultimately be a beneficiary of this deal because the costs
of connectivity are going to go down.
HERERA: And what about the cable industry?
CHAPLIN: Also a beneficiary.
So, they`re in the wireless business today in a very small way and they`re
relying on Verizon`s network. The degree to which they can be disruptive
is limited by what they pay Verizon (NYSE:VZ) for access to that network,
and Verizon (NYSE:VZ) has got no interest in giving it to them cheaply
because Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is their biggest competitor. But if they can go
and buy capacity from Dish much more cheaply, first of all, they will have
a better, more profitable wireless business, but it gives them the ability
to be more aggressive, go after more share, take prices down, all of which
is good for consumers.
HERERA: Well, they cleared a big hurdle today but still the legal issue to
face. We`ll see what happens. Jonathan Chaplin with New Street Research,
again, thanks for joining us tonight.
CHAPLIN: Thanks for having me.
HERERA: As we mentioned the S&P and Nasdaq ended the week at records.
Investors were encouraged by strong earnings from Alphabet and Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC), which we told you about last night. The Dow Jones
Industrial Average added 51 points to 27,192. The Nasdaq was up 91, and
the S&P 500 gained 22. The major averages were all higher for the week.
Also lifting the market was a report that showed the economy grew at a
slower but still solid clip in the second quarter.
So, where did the strength come from? Well, as with most things related to
this economy, it`s complicated.
Steve Liesman explains.
STEVE LIESMAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: The government reported Friday that growth slowed in the second quarter by a full percentage point following the 2.1 percent from 3.1 in the first. But the
economy did grow slightly more than Wall Street had expected as consumer spending did its best to offset a slow down on the business side. Rather
than focus on that slowing, many economists chose to see the number as a
reversion back to a more normal growth rate for the economy. The strength in the first quarter was really the exception.
Weak consumer spending in the first quarter gave way to explosive 4.3
percent spending growth in the second, best number since end of 2017, and
government spending, depressed by that shut down in the first quarter, it
rebounded to register the biggest quarterly gain since the financial
crisis. On the other hand, strong first quarter business spending and
inventory growth, well, they turned into negative numbers in second
quarter. Trade also dragged on GDP.
MICHAEL FEROLI, JP MORGAN: I think it is reasonable to suspect trade
uncertainty is a major factor holding back CapEx. In terms of the, you
know, the forward-looking indicators, maybe we`ll do a little better in the
third quarter, but that said, you know, the surveys aren`t suggesting
there`s going to be a huge rebound in capex at any time in the offing. I
think best thing to hope for is a return to moderate growth there.
LIESMAN: So, what does growth in the quarter ending in June tell us about
how we`re growing now?
ALEX BRILL, AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: It`s a solid number.
Obviously, the inventory piece just creates a little volatility and the
investment numbers are a disappointment but not a surprise. But overall,
we see strong consumers.
LIESMAN: Moderate growth would actually be welcome given many began 2019
forecasting a recession this year or next. Right now, growth is slowing,
but it`s not exactly slow.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Steve Liesman.
GRIFFETH: And that GDP report is one of the last major readings on the
economy that the Fed policymakers will see before they meet next week.
Now, some say the market is already priced in an interest rate cut which
leaves investors in an unusual position.
Mike Santoli explains.
MIKE SANTOLI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Wall Street typically likes when the Federal Reserve starts cutting interest rates, but what about when a rate cut comes with the economy in already in good shape and stocks up 20 percent in past seven months?
These are the questions consuming investors ahead of next week`s Fed
meeting. With second quarter GDP arriving better than expected and the S&P 500 at a fresh all-time high, a quarter percentage point cut in short term rates has been fully priced in to the bond market this month. Corporate bond yields have already rushed toward multi-year lows, giving companies the benefit of lower borrowing cost even before the Fed acts. The S&P 500 is valued above 17 times forecast earnings for the next 12 months, right about a high valuation for this bull market.
Does this mean a rate cut has front loaded the full benefit of the
anticipating easing of policy from the Fed? There`s a risk it is true but
certainly no guarantee. In past cycles when a rate cut averted a slide
into recession, stocks tended to perform well after the cut. Corporate
profits came in stronger than feared and are seen to grow at a healthier
pace late this year, and low inflation and firm credit conditions continue
to support equity valleys.
Still, the best rallies of this bull market have come when a widely feared
threat did not come to pass, not when a widely expected bit of good news
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Mike Santoli.
HERERA: Well, we`re just about halfway through the current earnings
reporting season and we have learned that some, but not all companies are
being hurt by the trade war with China.
Coke, for example, saw growth in the Asia-Pacific region. LVMH pointed to
strong demand, especially in China. And Texas Instrument said it`s seen
growth in its 5G products. But Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) noted competitive
pressures in China. Align Technology (NASDAQ:ALGN) saw lower shipments to that country, and Las Vegas sands noted weaker cash flow from Macau.
GRIFFETH: So, after all of this week`s earnings reports and this morning`s
GDP report, it becomes clear we almost have two economies. Things look
good when the consumer is involved, not so good when you talk trade.
What`s an investor to do with this duel economy?
Joining us tonight, we welcome Liz Ann Sonders, the chief investment
strategist at Charles Schwab.
Always good to see you, Liz Ann. Thanks for joining us.
LIZ ANN SONDERS, CHARLES SCHWAB CHIEF INVESTMENT STRATEGIST: Hi, Bill. Nice to see you. And, Sue, too.
GRIFFETH: So, there are clear haves and have notes right now.
GRIFFETH: What do you do with it when investing in the stock market right now?
SONDERS: So, we think it is an environment, given some of the things you
already mentioned, this bifurcation where you`ve got some decent strength in domestic industries on the consumer side of the economy, but weakness in business investment and confidence that the business leaders have, is that you — and given it is late in cycle, you want to kind of snuggle up to
benchmarks so to speak.
In other words, don`t take undue risk. What we`ve been telling investors
really for about the last two years is keep your equity allocation no
higher than whatever your normal long-term strategic allocation is. We
have had an emphasis towards large-cap stocks at expense of small-cap
Small-cap stocks generally have higher debt levels. They have lower
profitability. Larger companies have a higher quality stream of earnings
and they can be more nimble around things like the trade war and tariffs.
And then at the sector level, we are also relatively neutral. We only have
one out perform rating right now and one under perform rating, the
outperform being health care. So we think it is a trickier time and that
the best stance right now is not to try to make bets in one direction or
HERERA: And does the interest rate environment with the Fed expected to
cut next week influence that projection at all, Liz Ann, or not?
SONDERS: I think that an interest rate cut is extensively good for asset
prices, for risk asset prices. It`s been a support under the stock market.
What I think though is the appropriate question to ask is whether that is
going to fix what ails the economy. And I`m not sure the answer to that is
I don`t think what ails the economy on the manufacturing side, tied to
trade and tariffs, is that interest rates are too high. So, it begs the
question will a cut in interest rates, a quarter point or even a half
point, be enough of a solution to sort of reignite animal spirits,
corporate animal spirits, which I think has been the biggest thing that`s
been damaged, and I`m not sure the answer to the question is yes.
GRIFFETH: Before we let you go briefly here, the market has waffled
between defensive sectors and cyclical sectors. You seem to be suggesting
to, sort of, take the middle ground here. Is that what I`m hearing?
SONDERS: I think what investors should really focus on is less so on
things like sectors but more so on factors. So, I think what is important
for investors to look at, especially if they`re buying individual names, is
stability of earnings, quality of earnings, companies that have rising
earnings expectations. So it is that stability quality factor that quite
frankly you can find across the spectrum of industries and sectors. And I
think focusing on those factors is more upon than just trying to hone in on
a segment of the economy.
GRIFFETH: Liz Ann Sonders with Charles Schwab, we always appreciate your time. We will let you get back to the clam bake. Enjoy the weekend.
SONDERS: Thank you very much.
HERERA: A few stories out of Washington tonight. First, President Trump
said his administration will reject Apple`s request to exempt its Mac Pro
from U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has not
commented. The president also said he expects Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) to
announce it will build a plant in Texas.
Separately, President Trump is threatening retaliatory action against
France. The move would be in response to that country`s new tax affecting American technology companies. And in a tweet, the president suggested
GRIFFETH: Still ahead, not one, not two, but three different types of
dividend growth stocks our market monitor says you may want to add to your portfolio.
GRIFFETH: McDonald`s (NYSE:MCD) has apparently discovered a recipe for success. The global fast food chain has been modernizing its stores,
investing in technology and raising prices, all of which helped it log its
best global sales in seven years today. That news sent the stock slightly
higher in today`s session but it is a few dollars away from an all-time
Kate Rogers (NYSE:ROG) has more.
KATE ROGERS, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: The U.S. consumer is
strong and McDonald`s (NYSE:MCD) is reaping the benefits. U.S. same-store sales rose as promotions and store upgrades attracted more diners. CEO
Steve Easterbrook said this was the highest U.S. comp since the launch of
all-day breakfast in 2015. McDonald`s (NYSE:MCD) has also been investing
in its behind-the-scenes technology to improve and personalize hundreds of drive thrus, and because of it, people are spending more.
PETER SALEH, BTIG MANAGING DIRECTOR: The drive thru makes up about 70 percent of their sales across the U.S., and they`re making — and they`re
making investments in the technology there to drive the average check
higher. So in our view, it is just investment behind tech, which is I
think a smart move on their part.
ROGERS: As delivery competition heats up, McDonald`s (NYSE:MCD) is doing deals to keep up, recently inking an agreement with Doordash as a partner, while continuing to work with Uber Eats. Globally, delivery is expected to be a $4 billion business this year for McDonald`s (NYSE:MCD) and the company has maintained double digit delivery sales growth in restaurants that offer the service for more than a year.
One question remains, will the fast food giant make a move on what appears to be the latest fad, plant-based meat? CEO Steve Easterbrook has said that they are looking at that option closely, as restaurants from Burger
King to Tim Horton`s and Dunkin all expanded their offerings.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Kate Rogers (NYSE:ROG).
HERERA: Twitter has been experimenting with ways to attract and keep its
users. It appears to be paying off. The company reported better than
expected earnings and revenue, sending the stock up about 9 percent.
Julia Boorstin reports tonight from Los Angeles.
JULIA BOORSTIN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: Twitter growing its user base faster than expected, adding 5 million daily active users in the quarter. Twitter CFO Ned Segal saying this growth shows the company`s investments in making the platform easier to use and removing spam from it are paying off and showing it has more room to grow.
NED SEGAL, TWITTER CFO: Our results are a great reminder of how the whole world can benefit from Twitter, and the work for us is to help people find what they`re looking for quickly, to remind them about the events and
topics that they care about most, whether it is a sporting event in the
United States or a political event in Asia, these are things that people
all over the world should care about. And we just have to do a better job
surfacing the things that people are looking for.
BOORSTIN: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey says that now, they have a better
understanding of what Twitter is and why people use it, enabling them to
prioritize what they should be working on, and now, that includes improving the platform by making it easier to follow and participate in
MARK MAHANEY, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS: This company is starting to really generate a track record of consistency. Investors like that. Whether
they`re going to have to materially increase infrastructure investments
around trust and platform security, that`s the question mark for me and for some investors.
BOORSTIN: Segal and Dorsey both stressing the company`s focused on
becoming more nimble so it can quickly implement changes to keep its users hooked and work to prevent manipulation on the platform.
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Julia Boorstin in Los Angeles.
GRIFFETH: Higher prices give Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL) a lift. That`s
where we begin tonight`s “Market Focus”, with the consumer products giant reporting weaker than expected earnings but they did see an increase in organic sales. The company raised prices for its product to offset higher
raw material costs. Shares rose more than 2 percent today to $73.69.
Goodyear missed estimates due to slumping sales following global auto
production and higher raw material cost. The CEO says that the tire
company does continue to struggle in what he called a challenging
environment, and the stock fell more than 5 percent today to $14.16.
HERERA: Pharmaceutical company AbbVie topped estimates, thanks to a sales increase in its cancer drug, Imbruvica, but the sales of its blockbuster
arthritis drug Humira fell. AbbVie also raised its full year forecast.
Shares are up basically 1.5 percent to finish at $67.76.
Phillips 66 reported mixed results as it posted better than expected
earnings but it fell short in revenue. The energy company had higher oil
refining margins and more volume in its pipelines and its natural
gas/liquid terminals. The stock was up a fraction to $102.32.
And Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW) also reported mixed results with an
earnings beat, but it missed on revenue. The equipment manufacturer also
lowered its full year guidance due to soft demand. Shares fell about 2
percent to $155.63.
GRIFFETH: Time for our weekly market monitor who has three different types of different denied-paying growth stocks he feels should protect your
portfolio should equities sell off. Last time he was with us, by the way,
last October, he recommended these three companies: O`Reilly Automotive
(NASDAQ:ORLY), which is up 14 percent since then, IDEXX Laboratories
(NASDAQ:IDXX) which is 27 percent, and MasterCard (NYSE:MA) which is 39 percent higher.
Back with us tonight, Doug Butler. He`s portfolio manager at Rockland
Doug, good to see you again. Thanks for joining us tonight.
DOUG BUTLER, PORTFOLIO MANAGER, ROCKLAND TRUST: Great. Thank you for having me.
GRIFFETH: So, we`re starting — we were talking dividend stocks but we`re
starting with 3M (NYSE:MMM) which today became a controversial company because they revealed an internal investigation into potential violations of U.S./foreign corrupt trade practices. Here is their statement they issued to explain what this investigation is all about. They said through this internal process, they discovered certain travel activities and
related funding and record-keeping issues, raising concerns rising from
marketing efforts by certain business groups based in China. We just felt
the need to disclose all of that.
You still like the company or does this give you pause at this point?
BUTLER: I think any time you are seeing one of these foreign corrupt
trading, which largely tends to be bribes paid by — normally by people who
are not necessarily super high up, it always gives you a bit of a pause.
But I think 3M (NYSE:MMM) in particular is a company that has weathered so many storms. They have paid dividends for 100 years. They`ve grown their dividends for 60 years straight. They`re a global, global player, and
there`s always going to be some headline risk around them, you know, names that do a lot of business in China or parts of the world where the corrupt services may come into play.
But I think we are still confident in the long-term prospect and the
prospects of 3M (NYSE:MMM) again. You know, it is damaging if it ends up
being meaningful, but we`re comfortable with the mix.
GRIFFETH: Very good.
HERERA: Let`s go to your other pick, Cerner (NASDAQ:CERN), the leading
company in digital health records.
BUTLER: Yes. I mean I think everybody knows when you go to the doctor now you see an iPad in their hands normally and you see it at every hospital, almost every hospital in America now has electronic health records or every major acute hospital. And frankly, 87 percent of physician`s offices use electronic health records.
So it is becoming very prevalent, and we like them because they`re the sort
of stock that`s a dividend initiator. They just decided to pay dividend
for the first time and, again, this is sort of getting in on the bottom
floor of the mast of dividends we project a client earning for years to
GRIFFETH: Quickly if we can on Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST), the industrial
supply company. They have a dividend yield of 2.7 percent, suffered a bit
the last couple of months. What do you like about them?
BUTLER: I think they suffered, the news came out in terms of the GDP
numbers, this — this past quarter, and the business confidence suffered
this time. And we think business confidence will recover.
We still believe that the trade war will not be, you know, a full-scale,
full-blown, no-holds-barred trade war. We think there`s room for
negotiation and we just think it will take a little while. It will
probably take another six months.
BUTLER: But we still see them as a company with many growth opportunities
ahead of it, and especially in building there. Now, there are different
types of connectivity than we are used to talk about.
GRIFFETH: All right. Doug Butler with Rockland Trust, again, thanks for
joining us tonight.
BUTLER: Thank you.
HERERA: Coming up, closing the gap for female veterans.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CONTESSA BREWER, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT: From boots on the ground to boot camp for entrepreneurs, how military veterans are transitioning to the civilian business world. I`m Contessa Brewer. I will have that story coming up on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HERERA: The gender pay gap among veterans is wider than in the general
population, and that`s where a program out of Syracuse University comes in.
Contessa Brewer has the latest installment of our “Closing the Gap
BREWER: Natasha Norie Standard spent 20 years in the Army.
NATASHA NORIE STANDARD, NORIE SHOES FOUNDER: I had opportunities to be a commander. I was airborne. I was in Special Operations. I supported special operations around the world.
BREWER: When she retired, with all of her skills and logistics and
management, she took a job at Williams Sonoma.
There were some hurdles.
STANDARD: It was the lack of camaraderie, lack of values, you know,
civilian values are different than military values.
BREWER: After seven months, she quit. Though she landed an interview at Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Norie Standard opted to start her own business,
STANDARD: I remembered how much I loved shoes from being stationed in Italy.
BREWER: To get her shoe business off the ground, she needed a boot camp,
one designed especially for entrepreneurs and especially for veterans. She
found it here at Syracuse University. With an institute for veterans and
military families, Syracuse is tackling the challenge of transitioning from
the armed forces to civilian life.
For women, that can be especially challenging.
MAUREEN CASEY, SU INSTITUTE FOR VETERANS AND MILITARY FAMILIES: Getting their transition right is core to ensuring financial independence.
BREWER: Maureen Casey testified before Congress about the problem. Women vet spend longing looking for work, earn 30 percent less than their male counterparts and may struggle in a corporate environment.
CASEY: We have seen an uptick in the number of women drawn toward
entrepreneurship programs, running counter to the trend where we have seen a decrease in veterans going into entrepreneurship.
BREWER: With lessons on business strategy, marketing, pitching to venture
capitalists, the boot camp has been so successful, it`s been duplicated at
other universities, graduating 2,000. Another program aimed specifically
with helping women vets with small business skills has seen 3,000
graduates, 65 percent of whom started their own business, 90 percent of
those are still operating.
For Derica Davis, the coaching is invaluable is growing her health and
DERICA DAVIS, LEIZURE LIVING FOUNDER: These programs and the experience that you get in the military prepares you to be up for the challenges, and, you know, no matter what you can keep persevering.
BREWER: Starbucks` former CEO Howard Schultz gave $7.5 million to help
fund this effort and corporate partners include J.P. Morgan Chase, PepsiCo,
Walmart, Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT), Prudential, the private sector
stepping up to help veterans put their best feet forward.
In Syracuse, Contessa Brewer , NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT.
HERERA: And that is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT tonight. I`m Sue Herera.
Thanks for joining us.
GRIFFETH: I`m Bill Griffeth. We finish the week for a record for the S&P
and the Nasdaq and we have a Fed meeting next week as well. It should be
Have a great weekend. See you Monday.
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