Transcript: Nightly Business Report – December 17, 2019

ANNOUNCER:  This is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT with Bill Griffeth and Sue  Herera.  


BILL GRIFFETH, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT ANCHOR:  Record finish.  The major  averages extend their win streak closing at all-time highs as the bulls  stay in control on Wall Street.  


Trillion dollar deal.  The House approves a massive spending bill that some  are calling a big win for business.  


And delivery wars.  FedEx (NYSE:FDX) cuts profit forecasts for next year as  competition heats up and demand for faster service intensifies.  
Those stories and much more tonight on NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for Tuesday,  December 17th.  


And we do bid you good evening, everybody, and welcome.  Sue is off  tonight.  


Investors have been in a god mood lately and it continued today.  Stocks  made new highs again as Wall Street welcome better than expected reports on  the economy and more progress on trade.  And once again, the gains may have  been slight, but it was still good enough for more records.  The Dow today  averages just a gain of 31 points to 28,267.  Nasdaq rose by 9 and the S&P  added just one point, but they closed higher a fifth straight session, its  longest win streak in a month.  


Bob Pisani starts us off tonight from the New York Stock Exchange.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


BOB PISANI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  Stocks back in record  rally mode today, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq closing at new highs, just  barely, its 30th record close of the year for the S&P.  What`s fueling this  rally?  No major headlines today but the bulls are sticking with their  story of more clarity heading into the end of the year and particularly  into 2020.  


But it doesn`t appear to be a recession in sight in the U.S. economy.   That`s the most important.  Let`s look at today`s data.  Industrial  production finally rebounded in November.  Factor activity and auto  production picked up after a nationwide strike ended at General Motors  (NYSE:GM).  
And housing starts also jumped last month with single family construction  hitting it ten-year highs, lower mortgage rates boosting buyer confidence  in that sector.  That`s sending home improvement names like Lowe`s to all- time highs today.  Bond yields also spiked in that stronger report, pushing  big banks like Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Citigroup (NYSE:C), Goldman  Sachs (NYSE:GS), new 52-week highs for them, along with regional banks like  KeyCorp (NYSE:KEY).  


Elsewhere, of course, the market takes some comfort in knowing there`s at  least a partial trade truce of sorts, kicking in ahead of the holiday.   That`s also supportive for stocks.  But the global growth picture is still  a little bit murky especially after reports that Boeing (NYSE:BA) could be  looking to cut or halt production of embattled max jets.  That`s rippling  through the global supply chain.  It`s hitting key suppliers like General  Electric (NYSE:GE), Safran and Spirit Aerosystems, all of which contribute  to that jet.  


For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Bob Pisani at the New York Stock Exchange.  
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  So, Bob just mentioned some of the things working in the  market`s favor.  And tonight, there is one more.  Another major headwind  has been lifted by lawmakers in Washington and it include as gift for  business.  
Ylan Mui reports on that tonight from Capitol Hill.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


YLAN MUI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  The House passed a $1.4  trillion spending deal fully funding the government and avert another  government shutdown through the end of the fiscal year.  
REP. HAKEEM JEFFRIES (D), NEW YORK:  We kept our promise to the American  people that we would fight for every day Americans consistent with our for  the people agenda.  


MUI:  The legislation passed in two parts, with strong support from both  sides of the aisle.  The package of bills now heads to the Senate which  must vote on it as well before sending it to President Trump`s desk.  


SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), SENATE MAJORITY LEADER:  All of the  president`s priorities are in the bill, the two bills.  Our members,  Republican members are extremely happy with provisions both related to  taxes and spending.  


MUI:  The legislation includes some big wins for business, notably, the  permanent repeal of the health care taxes in the Affordable Care Act, the  Cadillac tax and high cost employer sponsored health care, the medical  device tax and the annual fee on health insurers are all gone.  Together,  they added up to tax reductions of more than $370 billion.  


The bill reauthorizes the Export-Import Bank for seven years, extend a tax  break for craft brewers and distillers for one year, and raises the legal  age tor buying tobacco products to 21.  But one of the major criticisms of  this deal is the price tag.  


DOUGLAS HOLTZ-EAKIN, FORMER CBO DIRECTOR:  If you want to grade the budget  outlook and the fiscal situation, you get a gentleman`s D at best.  I mean,  we have big problems are not being dealt with.  They`re getting passed to  short-term issues keeping the government open.  They`re not dealing with  the long-term issue of rising debt.  


MUI:  All of those additional provisions have earned bills like this and  nickname Washington — Christmas trees — because they got something for  everyone.  
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Ylan Mui in Washington.  
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  Then there`s the Federal Reserve, which is now in neutral mode.   And today, the president of the Boston Fed backed that position.  Eric  Rosengren says that he sees no reason to lower interest rates next year  unless there is material change in the economy.  He said right now is  simply a good time to patiently assess conditions.  


During his final meeting of 2019 last week, the Fed kept interest rates  steady after cutting them three times this year.  


And then there is the job market which, of course, has been a key driver of  this economy.  And today, we learned that the number of job openings rose  unexpectedly.  According to the Labor Department, there were more than 7  million openings in November.  The retail sector accounted for the bulk of  those, likely because of seasonal hiring.  The number of manufacturing  positions posted also rose in that time.  


As we mentioned, the real estate market seems to be perking up just in time  for the New Year.  Housing starts which measures new home construction,  that rose more than expected in November, and building permits which  signals how much construction is in the pipeline.  That was even better.  
Diana Olick rounds up the latest numbers.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


DIANA OLICK, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  With builder  confidence at a 20-year high, it comes as no surprise that housing starts  and permits are so strong.  Single family starts were the driver up to a  10-month high.  Builders are responding to strong demand as well as a  severe shortage of existing homes for sales.  Starts were strongest in the  west and south where builders are busiest.  


Single family building permits which are an indicator of future  construction jumped to the highest level since 2007.  That bodes very well  going into the New York, and the usually busy spring season which actually  starts in late February.  


Builders are banking on low mortgage rates driving demand.  Starts were  much slower at the beginning of this year when rates were about a full  percentage point higher than they are now.  


While the November numbers were strong overall, single family home  construction for this year is likely to end up flat compared to a year ago.   That`s because builders only picked up production at the end of the summer.  
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Diana Olick in Washington.
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  As we reported last night, Boeing (NYSE:BA) has decided now to  temporarily halt production of its troubled 737 MAX plane.  Hundreds of  suppliers are going to be affected by that.  And it is expected to ripple  through the whole economy because Boeing (NYSE:BA) is one of the country`s  largest manufacturing exporters.  As one economist said, it`s hard to find  another single company that could have the same type of impact.  
Steve Liesman has more.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


STEVE LIESMAN, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  It may be hard to  imagine but economists estimate that Boeing`s decision to halt production  of the 737 MAX can lower overall U.S. economic growth in the first quarter  and maybe do so measurably.  The negative affects they estimate could be  even larger than last year`s government shutdown.  Forecasters of both J.P.  Morgan and Oxford Economics say the production halt could shave as much as  a half point off of first quarter growth.  


The problem is that the first quarter outlook was already looking weak.   Now, it could come closer to 1 percent instead 1.6.  That will make it one  of the weakest quarters in years.  Growth is expected to rebound when  production returns.  But when that happens is an open question.  


KEN HERBERT, CANACCORD GENUITY:  At this point, you know, we`re facing a  situation where you are going to have probably about 450 aircraft in  inventory because Boeing (NYSE:BA) will finish producing currently the  aircraft in process now.  The international regulators still have to act.   And while we assume that Europe might be relatively soon after the United  States, who knows when the Chinese and other major markets may look to  obviously fall in line.  


LIESMAN:  For now, Boeing (NYSE:BA) said it won`t lay off the 12,000  workers who build the 737 MAX.  But if the stoppage grinds on, suppliers  might find it tough to hold the line on jobs and eventually Boeing  (NYSE:BA) could as well.  
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Steve Liesman.  
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  By the way, today`s Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) said it`s  going to once again delay the return of the 737 MAX to its fleet now until  mid-April at the earliest.  The airline previously planned to reintroduce  it in March.  Southwest operates more Boeing (NYSE:BA) 737 MAX planes than  any other domestic carrier.  Last week, American Airlines removed the plane  from its schedule until April 7th.  


Time to take a look at some of today`s upgrades and downgrades, and we`ll  begin with shares of homebuilder Lennar (NYSE:LEN) tonight, which was  downgraded to sector perform from outperform at RBC Capital Markets.  The  analyst there cited the stock valuation after a 45 percent run up so far  this year.  Price target: $62.  That stock fell 1.5 percent today to  $57.21.  


Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) was upgraded to overweight from equal weight  at Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS).  The analyst cited growth in really all of its  divisions.  Its pharma business, as well as the company`s consumer segment  and its medical devices unit.  Price target, $170.  The shares rose 1  percent to $143.56.  


Micron Technology (NASDAQ:MU) was upgraded once again today.  This time to  an outperform rating from neutral at Wedbush.  The analyst cited better  pricing and expected acceleration in demand throughout 2020.  Price target,  $65.  The stock rose a fraction to 53 even today.  
Still ahead, FedEx (NYSE:FDX) warns of another hit to profits as Amazon  (NASDAQ:AMZN) becomes an even bigger player in delivery.  
(MUSIC)


GRIFFETH:  Late today, FedEx (NYSE:FDX) cut its earnings target for the  fourth time this year.  


Now, you might think that the rise of e-commerce would be good for the  shipping giant.  But all the competition and the increase in volume has  meant higher costs.  So profits fell in the most recent quarter along with  revenue.  And that sent the stock lower in initial after-hours trading  tonight.  
Eric Chemi has more.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


ERIC CHEMI, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  It was a disappointing  quarter for FedEx (NYSE:FDX).  CEO Fred Smith acknowledged in the release  of the company`s fiscal 2020 is, quote, a year of continued significant  challenges and changes.  The company missed on the top and bottom lines,  citing weak global economic conditions, increased FedEx (NYSE:FDX) ground  costs, the loss of business from Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), a shift to lower  yielding services, more competitive pricing environment and a late holiday  shopping season.  


Looking ahead, the company is reducing guidance to reflect lower than  expected revenue and higher than expected expenses.  FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is  also implementing reductions to its global express air network and  restricting hiring.  All the help improved productivity and better match  competitive with demand. 

 
For example, FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is eliminating man of its international  flights to reflect reduce the global air freight demand.  The after-hours  move now means FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is negative for 2019.  
For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, I`m Eric Chemi.
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and its promise of next day free delivery  is a big reason why the shipping industry is being reshaped.  Companies  investing billions of dollars together items to customers a lot sooner.  


Our Frank Holland went to Kent, Washington, to talk to the person in charge  of making that happen.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


FRANK HOLLAND, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)  sees these blue vans as much more than just a way to offer free one-day  delivery to more than 10 million products.  
MARIA RENZ, AMAZON GLOBAL DELIVERY EXPERIENCE VP:  They are an important  first impress impression on the last mile delivery for Amazon  (NASDAQ:AMZN).  


HOLLAND:  Maria Renz is top adviser to Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos  and currently the global head of delivery experience.  
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is projected to see the volume it delivers increased  by 50 percent next year, becoming a rival to one-time partner FedEx  (NYSE:FDX) and current partner UPS.  


RENZ:  After moving to one-day this year, we have seen acceleration in both  revenue and you know it growth. 

 
HOLLAND:  The company has seen its fleet of delivery vans grow by 150  percent from June of 2018 when it started with 20,000 vans.  But these men  and women who are literally the driving force of Amazon`s free one-day  delivery don`t actually work for the tech giant.  Drivers work for  independent companies that handle the majority of prime deliveries.  


CHRISTOPHER LILLEY, AMAZON DELIVERY SERVICE PARTNER:  You couldn`t ask for  a better management team that I work with at Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN).  


HOLLAND:  Chris Lilley is a former Army captain who now owns Amazon  (NASDAQ:AMZN) vans and employs 60 drivers in Seattle.  He says delivering  free one day is the opportunity in a lifetime and a challenge.


LILLEY:  But with any challenge as you have, as along as you provide the  right equipment, the right task, the right purpose, the mindset, anything  is achievable.  And my drivers do achieve it and they provide feedback if  something is not working.  And then I work with my partner, Amazon  (NASDAQ:AMZN).


HOLLAND:  These delivery stations near residential areas where drivers pick  up your package.  Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has increased these by 36 percent in  2019 as part of an estimated $3 billion spent on free one-day.  
In North America, 100 warehouses known as fulfillment centers, 125,000  workers and 200,000 robots are all a key part of making free one-day a  reality.  


And expect to see more of the blue vans on the road.  Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)  delivers about half of what you buy on the site now.  That number is  expected to increase to 70 percent next year.  
For NIGIHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Frank Holland in Kent, Washington.  
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  Now, competition in the e-commerce business has become  especially fierce in that so-called last mile, when the package hits your  front porch.  That is where the game is won and lost.  
And joining us tonight with his assessment of the competition and who the  likely winners and losers will be, Donald Broughton is with us, the  managing partner at Broughton Capital.  
Don, good to see you.  Welcome back.  


DONALD BROUGHTON, BROUGHTON CAPITAL MANAGING PARTNER:  Always good to see.  


GRIFFETH:  And I would add to that, retailers like Target (NYSE:TGT) and  Walmart who now have their own customers coming to pick up the items at the  store after they`ve ordered online.  They cover the last mile as well.  I  mean, that really is where the competition is right now, isn`t it?  


BROUGHTON:  Oh, it`s across the board.  And yes, used to be that the last  mile was in your back seat of your trunk.  So, it`s in some ways a return  to that.  


GRIFFETH:  Who are the winners likely to be now?  Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is  clearly is the one that`s sparking this competition with all the money they  are spending right now.  But, you know, there are others that played this  game very well as well.  What do you think?  


BROUGHTON:  Well, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) certainly is grabbing the headline  right now.  But I think it`s important to step back and look at what the  chess game that`s being played here.  Don`t overlook the fact that FedEx  (NYSE:FDX) dropped Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) as a customer.  


GRIFFETH:  Right.  


BROUGHTON:  I guess Jeff Bezos didn`t get the memo that he had been broken  up with.  And so, we had petty announcements today that third party  surrenders are prohibited from using FedEx (NYSE:FDX).  Well, hey, here`s a  news flash, they broke up with you.  They don`t want to do business with  you.  


They kicked a billion dollars revenue to the curb.  Why?  Because they  weren`t making money on it to begin with.  And two, if you look very  carefully what they`re doing, they`re building strategic partnerships with  Walmart, Walgreens, strong competitors of Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) who are  partnering with FedEx (NYSE:FDX), one.  


Two, here is what I understand.  FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is the ground delivery  business is the lowest cost provider of that service per package with the  fastest service.  If Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is successful at penetrating that  marketplace at all, who is going to hurt?  It`s the highest cost provider  with the worst service, i.e., the Post Office first.  And then it`s going  to hurt UPS, the second highest cost provider —  


GRIFFETH:  OK.
BROUGHTON:  — with worse service than FedEx (NYSE:FDX).  
GRIFFETH:  But you have to admit, FedEx (NYSE:FDX) —  
BROUGHTON:  And that`s the way that plays out.  


GRIFFETH:  But you have to admit FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is suffering right now.   They got this higher coast, the stock has been coming down.  I mean, this  has been a challenging time for them according to Fred Smith.  


BROUGHTON:  Oh, absolutely.  Without a doubt, Bill, you are absolutely  right.  But the inability to produce financial returns in the last four  quarters for FedEx (NYSE:FDX) has been driven by severe declines in air  freight volumes in Asia, Europe.  We`re now seeing on year over year basis,  we`re seeing negative on top of negative volumes in those marketplaces,  which are a direct result of the trade tariffs and the ongoing trade war.


GRIFFETH:  Right.


BROUGHTON:  It`s just destroying prosperity in economy after economy after  economy.  So, that`s a different issue.  


GRIFFETH:  All right.  
BROUGHTON:  And that`s really a headwind to them.  
GRIFFETH:  Very good.  Donald Broughton with Broughton Capital Management – – again, thanks for joining us tonight, Don.  
BROUGHTON:  Always a pleasure, Bill.  
GRIFFETH:  You bet.  


Meantime, an executive shake up at Bed Bath and Beyond, and that`s where we  begin tonight`s “Market Focus”.  The new CEO there at the home goods  retailer is shaking up its inner circle, replacing six senior executives.   Mark Tritton says that this move is going to streamline decision making and  bring a fresh perspective to changing consumer trends.  Shares rose more  than 11 percent there at $16.88 today.  


Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) has issued an upbeat outlook.  The drug maker expects  some of key drugs like treatments for diabetes and psoriasis to boost  revenue.  The company also plans to launch up to three new drugs next year.   The guidance came one day after Lilly increased its quarterly dividend by  15 percent.  That stock was up about 2 percent to $125.33.  
But it was a different story for Unilever (NYSE:UN).  The consumer products  company says it`s going to miss its latest sales target due to slowing  growth in North America and because of challenges in other key markets.   So, the company now plans to cut some cost.  And the stock dropped on that  news about 9 percent to $56.28.  


And finally, truck maker Navistar posted mixed results.  It did beat profit  expectations but it fell short of Wall Street`s revenue forecasts.  It also  issued a downbeat outlook for next year, citing lower demand and supplier  production constraints.  Shares fell almost 10-1/2 percent today as a  result to $28.97.  


All this week we are getting ready for investing in the New Year by  bringing back some familiar market monitor guests.  And tonight`s guests  like three large dividend-paying stocks.  Last time she was on in  September, she recommended Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), which has risen 11  percent since that time.  She also liked Palo Alto Networks (NASDAQ:PANW)  which was up 8 percent, and Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM), which is 11 percent  higher.  


Nancy Tengler is back with us tonight — of course, chief investment  officer at Tengler Wealth Management.


Good to see you again, Nancy.  Thanks for joining us tonight.  


NANCY TENGLER, TENGLER WEALTH MANAGEMENT CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER:  You,  too, Bill.  Thanks for having me.


GRIFFETH:  And so, we`re talking dividends tonight.  And now, you start  with United Technologies (NYSE:UTX) tonight.  You start with United  Technology.  You like UTX, they have a pretty good dividend, don`t they?  


TENGLER:  Yes, it`s about a 2 percent yield.  The company just announced an  acquisition of Raytheon (NYSE:RTN).  Investors didn`t like the news but we  think it`s going to improve the balance sheet.  And decrease risk in the  company by increasing exposure to aerospace.  


So, we — you know, this is a CEO who is — has been very good at  acquisitions, Rockwell included.  They raising the dividend handily every  year.  And you`re — investors are getting Carrier and Otis by now next  year.  So, they`ll get two additional holdings.  


GRIFFETH:  OK.  You are sticking with Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM).  You  mentioned the last time, it`s up 11 percent in the meantime, and you are  staying with it.  Why?  


TENGLER:  Well, I mean, this is also another CEO you just don`t want to bet  against.  Hock Tan did the Computer Associates acquisition that had  investors kind of up in arms.  Yet he is paying out 50 percent of free cash  flow, raised the dividend 23 percent this week they made the announcement,  and it`s grown the dividend at about 50-plus percent over the last five years.  


I don`t need a lot to go right or with a 4 percent yield in this company.   It is in many of the sweet spots and with trade tensions easing, I think  this is a place investors will be glad they were two, three, five years  from now.  
GRIFFETH:  All right.  Finally, the current king of all media, I guess,  Disney (NYSE:DIS), which really is not known for its dividend.  It`s only  1.2 percent, but you can`t argue with the totals return you`re getting  right now, huh?


TENGLER:  Yes and they`re growing at about 8 percent a year, Bill.  I mean,  the 10 million subscribers on day one was a important milestone to hit.   But we think they`re going to hit their target about 60 million to 907  million five years out.  And they are going to be, you know, expand —  doing it without impacting margins materially because they are not paying  for content with cash they don`t have like Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) does every  year to the tune of $3 billion in negative net cash flow. 


So, we like this for the theme park, for the movies, and for streaming.   And Bob Iger is a great and leader.  So, we`re going to stick with our  holdings.  
GRIFFETH:  Once again, the CEO for you is an important component in that  decision making process.  


TENGLER:  Definitely. 
GRIFFETH:  Nancy Tengler with Tengler Wealth Management — again, thanks,  Nancy.  Good to see.  
TENGLER:  Thanks, Bill.  


GRIFFETH:  And coming up, with farmers, they have a growing appetite for  more peas.  
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)


JANE WELLS, NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT CORRESPONDENT:  We`re talking whirled  peas here in Montana.  This is cattle country, also top producer for a key  ingredient to replace meat.  Beyond Meat can`t get enough of this stuff.   So, why aren`t American pea farmers making money?  That`s coming up  shortly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(MUSIC)


GRIFFETH:  Here is what we are watching for tomorrow. 
Of course, in the world of politics, the full House of Representative is  scheduled to vote on the two articles of impeachment.  A number of Federal  Reserve officials are scheduled to be speaking on the economy.  And the  housing market will be in focus once again with the release of weekly  mortgage applications.  


That`s what we`re watching for on Wednesday.  
Ford said today it`s going to be adding 3,000 new jobs at two Detroit area  factories next year.  The automaker will be investing nearly $1.5 billion  to build new pickup trucks, SUVs, electric and autonomous vehicles.  Those  two plants are in Dearborn and the Detroit suburb of Wayne.  


Meantime, coffee futures prices today saw their biggest one day gain since  2015.  Brazil, which is the world`s largest coffee producer, is facing a  supply shortage right now because of drought conditions.  And the same  thing is happening in other South American countries as consumption remains  strong right now.  


Finally tonight, American pea farmers are hoping for better days.  During  the trade war with China, they lost key export markets and prices dropped  as a result.  But now, there may be new hope thanks to the plant-based  protein craze.  
As you saw, Jane Wells is in Flaxville, Montana, tonight.  
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)


PAUL KANNING, MONTANA FARMER:  I actually love this.  I love being out in  the middle of the nowhere.  


WELLS:  Paul Kanning is a fourth generation Montana farmer and Air Force  veteran at the center of America`s protein debate.  He grows peas in a  state better known for beef.  


KANNING:  There`s this kind of friction between beef growers and pea  growers on things like Beyond Meat.  


WELLS:  America`s pea farmers are on a tear.  Production is up 40 percent  from a year ago and acreage has grown 400 percent over 25 years.  But pea  prices are not good.  


TIM MCGREEVY, U.S. DRY PEA & LENTIL COUNCIL CEO:  You know, they`re trading  under 10 cents a pound to the grower, which is really below the cost of  production right now.  
WELLS:  Wow.  


Tim McGreevy says peas are split between domestic and foreign markets.   Most U.S. peas go out of the country but the two largest customers, India  and China, have slapped on huge tariffs and exports have collapsed.  


MCGREEVY:  We`re down about 300,000 metric tons in demand from our two  largest suppliers.  And so, it`s — that`s a little hard to make up.  
WELLS:  The hope is that as farmers in places like Montana decide what to  plant, domestic demand from companies like Beyond Meat will make up for the  losses overseas.  


KANNING:  So, these are yellow peas that have been treated.  
WELLS:  Paul Kanning has bought special peas for 2020 from a pea protein  company Puris Foods.  Puris has a $100 million investment from Cargill to  beef up pea resources and convince more farmers of any crop to use peas as  part of their rotation.  


TYLER LORENZEN, PURIS FOODS CEO:  There`s a lot of beauty in peas  specifically because they`re nitrogen fixating.  So, they take nitrogen  from the air and convert it to usable fertilizer for itself, but they  overproduce it, so they make fertilizer for the next plant.  


WELLS:  Beyond Meat isn`t the only customer.  Tyson has created a new pea  and beef blend.  In fact, last year in the U.S., 327 new pea protein  products hit the market up from 11 a decade ago.  


KANNING:  If this is something that`s going to be sustained, I want to take  the opportunity to kind of get in on the ground floor.  
WELLS:  Kanning hopes the hype around protein grown sustainable is also  sustainable.  


For NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT, Jane Wells, Flaxville, Montana.  
(END VIDEOTAPE)


GRIFFETH:  And once again, it was a record close for major averages today,  the Dow up just up 31.  That was enough, though.  Nasdaq rose nine.  S&P  added one.  


That is NIGHTLY BUSINESS REPORT for tonight.  I`m Bill Griffeth.  Thanks  for watching.  Have a great evening.  See you tomorrow.

END
Nightly Business Report transcripts and video are available on-line post  broadcast at http://nbr.com. The program is transcribed by ASC Services II  Media, LLC. Updates may be posted at a later date. The views of our guests  and commentators are their own and do not necessarily represent the views  of Nightly Business Report, or CNBC, Inc. Information presented on Nightly  Business Report is not and should not be considered as investment advice.  (c) 2019 CNBC, Inc.


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