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tv   Nightly Business Report  PBS  April 8, 2014 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT

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this is "nightly business report," with tyler mathisen and susie gharib. failure to comply, general motors safina ed fined by its safety regular later for not answering all the questions on the safety recall. what it all means for the automaker. and they're off, alcoa out of the gate with a mixed bag of earnings, but the season is not expected to be strong and too cou that could lead to a bumpy road. and tax deadline, one week to go, if you have not filed your taxes yet. we have a few strategies you can still use to all of your advantages, all this and more for tuesday april 8th. good evening everybody. another big setback for general
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motors, another recall for 2 and a half million cars for the defective link. the automaker had not met an april 3rd deadline to respond to its requests for more detailed information about the recall. the regulator said that gm failed to answer multiple questions about the defect and why it waited to issue a recall after learning about the problem, gm has been facing fines of $7,000 a day until it fully complies. phil lebeau joins us from chicago. phil, what does it mean for general motors? >> susiusie, this is another example of them saying knock it off, give us all the information as quick as possible or else we'll go to federal court and demand it if you don't turn it over as quickly as possible.
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some people will hear it and say $7,000 a day? will that really compel general motors to come forward and turn over the documents? that is not the point here, that, the maximum allowed by law, $7,000 a day which is what they were fined per day. this is more of the frustration that they have dealing with general motors on this recall ignition switch recall issue and not getting documents. just a quote i want to give you guys. at the end of the letter it says to be clear a complete response by gm means gm fully and substantively releases all documents, in other words, gm is not complying completely and the federal government says enough, we want all the answers and documents. >> has gm said anything? why wouldn't they produce all the documents? >> well, gm answered the questions and said we're looking into it and doing our own investigation and we'll turn
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over all the documents when we have all the documents and all the information. some of it is technical relating to documents and relating to the design switch, things like that, dealer, but when you look at this letter they make it very clear, some of it is not technical answers, some of it is you should know what you were doing when you were doing it and you should be telling us. >> no more stalling on this one, from gm, phil lebeau reporting from chicago. and earnings investments, first numbers on the quarterly numbers, alcoa posted profits that came in a little better than expected, 9 cents a share, compared with estimates at about a nickel a share. and this excludes charges for smelters, this is on lower aluminum prices, the ceo sounded upbeat on the company's prospects saying global growth is solid. alcoa's shares did trade higher in the session and rose slightly
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higher. now that alcoa's numbers are in what can investors expect? reuters expects it should be a percent higher, a lot lower than the 6 and a half% out showers look at the start of the year, others like fax set are forecasting a decrease in profits. >> reporter: four times a year, publicly traded companies in america have to tell investors how much they sold and how much money they made. earning season kicks off this week and investors will be laser focused on the results given the near-record highs in the stock market. >> were the valuations as high as they were? and certainly they were bumpy against the historical norms, there has to be a focus on earnings. we have had so many disruptions that there is an increased level of anxiety which is
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understandable. >> that increased level of anxiety could be a big part of the recent pullback in stocks, wall street experts are already reducing their expectations. first off, you should know the bar has been set very low when it comes to profit growth. analysts expect a percentage in growth for s&p 500 companies at the same time last year. but there is little reason for optimism. the same survey expects sales to grow by a slim 3%. that means that businesses are actually expanding and selling more product to customers, however, not all types of companies are expected to do well. companies in the telecommunications sectors are expected to do well, energy and financial stocks are expected to show profit drops, of course, everyone has their own view. some like the prospects for the technology sector.
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>> we're seeing a very significant amount of growth there, and we see them with the most amount of cash on their balance sheets. they are fundamentally sound and have a lot of cash to use. >> whether you're bullish or bearish, you definitely want to pay attention to all the stock numbers coming out. on wall street today, stocks snapped a three-day slide, investors bought the momentum in the bio tech, seeing the sharpest decline in weeks, that helped the nasdaq have the biggest gain, dow rose ten points, nasdaq lost before and was up 33 points, the s&p added seven points. well, the market was up today, since the s&p 500 hit a high last week we had a little bit of a high in the nasdaq, as you may expect some of the biggest losers on paper would come from the top dogs of the
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tech world. take a look, facebook had mark zuckerberg down more than $4 and a half billion on paper since just last friday. the amazon founder, nearly $3 and a half billion lighter in the wallet. and the google guys, about one and a quarter billion dollars less rich each. on capitol hill today, the senate passed a bill that would retroactively restore jobless benefits to more than 2 million of the nation's long-term unemployed. that bill heads to the house and could face significant opposition, if it is renewed, the aid would mean a payment of $256 a week through the end of may for americans out of work for longer than six months. the white house is trying to control the gender pay gap. both of them were targeted at contract workers, the order prohibits contract workers for retaliating for discussing pay.
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it encourages them to be more transparent based on gender and race, the order says they will level the playing field for all workers so no one becomes a second class citizen. >> when any of our citizens can't fulfill their potential for reasons that have nothing for do with their talent or character or work ethic, they're not living up to their work capability. we don't have second class citizens here, certainly not in the work place, so tomorrow the senate has a chance to make it right. >> and the senate is scheduled to take up legislation that would equal the pay act strengthening the workers and equal pay. it was another good day for investors in utility stocks, the s&p utility index closed higher again during the recent market selloff, the investor money has been pouring into utilities thanks to their high dividends,
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and some of the big names like duke energy, first energy and conn energy are seeing themselves safely in the green. and more exposure to hackers as microsoft stops giving tech support for its windows xp software, it is still used by many power companies, more on who is vulnerable and what is being done about it. >> with windows xp, we're taking it to a whole new level. >> a 12-year run comes to an end. as of today you can keep using window's xp, but microsoft will no longer offer technical help if you get into trouble with the old operating system. microsoft wants customers to migrate from window's xp to more moderate systems such as windows 1, the operating system has an estimated 30% market share. but with technical support
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coming to a halt, some cyber security experts are voicing concern, they say microsoft's decision could expose companies that still rely on window's xp to hackers, companies they say that could be especially vulnerable. >> the vulnerability is real. i think it kind of goes without saying that the threat act ors are out there. and we've seen various types of interests. >> analysts say some utilities could be stuck with window's xp because they require authorization from regulators before making any updates to software, and there could be a huge price, up to $10 million to upgrade. but some say the threat is exaggerated, saying that most companies have extensive security measures in place and the dirty little secret about microsoft's decision to end xp's support is not really ending, power companies worldwide can still get temporary technical support from microsoft.
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they're just going to have to pay for it. microsoft has already struck deals with the british, the irish and dutch governments to continue support for xp, the deal with the uk government is for $9 million. analyst is say there is also a lot of hype about this issue but any utility company that has not gone to great lengths to protect itself from hackers is vulnerable to not only legal liabilities but also a public relations disaster. if the power goes out and they have not protected their computers. so who is right? with microsoft at least formally ending tech support today we could soon find out. josh lipton, "nightly business report," silicon valley. and a demand for some of your favorite brands is falls. what that could say about the economy and some big new american companies.
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the energy information issued its short-term price outlook, they will average about $95.60 a barrel this year. and brent crude is expected to sell for just under $105, today, west texas jumped 2% for more than $102 a barrel, while brent settled in at eight. and a new government report says that the u.s. is sitting on a massive stockpile of reserves. that has energy producers pushing to export more of that gas, but it won't be easy. >> reporter: the energy business is booming in the u.s. and part of the surge includes natural gas. the energy information administration says the u.s. is sitting on more than 2 trillion
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cubic feet of natural gas reserves, roughly 92 years of supply. so is now the time to export? supporters say exports will help to stabilize the prices worldwide, especially in light of the political tension in russia and the ukraine. they say it will add valuable jobs to the economy. >> i think we've seen real hard evidence that the shale gas boom, even when limited to domestic consumption has had a tremendous buoying effect on the economy, directly associated with the jobs for drilling in production and distribution. but also for the ancillary jobs associated with it. >> but environmental groups are also trying to slow the export process because of the concerns over the dangers of fracking. they also worry about prices for u.s. consumers. >> the major concern for the environmental standpoint and natural gas is that this will trigger fracking, the
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controversial drilling method that caused all sorts of drinking water problems and all sorts of problems across the u.s. and it will also raise gas prices for americans up to 20%. >> the department of energy has only issued a few approvals to export liquid gas and only one on the east coast, here, in maryland, if the $3.8 billion construction project gets off the ground it will create thousands of jobs, add millions of dollars in tax revenue and it is fairly easy to do. >> the export project requires very little equipment addition. we already have the pipelines we need, we have the storage plants, the offshore lines and the exports. >> while dominion is waiting, other companies are also waiting to see if their plans come through. but only time will tell how the war will play out and how the administration will play its
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cards. for nightly business report. and eli lily ordered to pay $9 billion over a drug linked to cancer. that is where we begin our focus, lily's portion of the fee is $3 billion for marketing the diabetes drug actos after they discovered the company hid the cancer risks. the fda warned there is a 40% increase in bladder cancer for people taking actos, both companies say they will challenge the verdict. shares of eli lilly, not much chan changes, shares dropping to 58 cents. and the firm upgrading their rating to buy from hold on the apparel maker, stocking a collection in the stock price and the standpoint fundamentals. the stock was about 3% higher
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today closing at $72.92. >> american airlines lowered their first quarter guidance, blaming cancellations, the carrier grounded more than 30,000 flights in the first few months of the year. despite the outlook, the airlines went up a fraction. and get ready for google glass at the office, google announced the wearable technology in the work place, they are creating software so the enterprises can fill out a form on line to be considered for a pair of glasses or multiple pairs. shares of google rose to $57.51. and wall street seeing how changes in consumer tastes and buying habits impact the revenues at some of the names in consumer products be p >> wall street says the economy
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is gaining steam. tell that to the companies that make food, beverages and household products, the latest tracking data from nielsen shows everything from cereal to canned soup posted a three in sales, others are ditching other foods for healthier options, the unusually cold winter didn't help keeping americans inside and pressuring sales further. but analysts say that it is flat wages that are the big problem for these companies. >> the concern is continuing, the consumer is struggling, the weather in the first quarter made things a little more difficult. we think it is going to be tough sliding. >> in household products, sales of hair color products dipped al 4%, sales flfor batteries and toilet paper,
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companies procter & gamble seeing the pain. >> companies have been struggling for the past few years and we think we'll see promotional activity for the next couple of years. >> we'll see what it s r the bottom line as earning season kicks off. keep in mind this has been a challenge for the market, and it will be key to see if there are signs of turn around, tomorrow we'll get a report from bed, bath and beyond. and next week, coke and pepsi, that will be key for the consumer. now, we'll talk more about the consumer staple sector and consumers, senior household and care manager for j.p. morgan. john, do you think the trends that sarah was just reporting on is because of changing consumer preferences or is it because of tighter household budgets? >> i think it is a little bit of both. i think depending on which category you're talking about it
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could be consumer preferences, for example, we're seeing a weakness in carbonated soft drinks because of concerns about aspertame, elsewhere there are concerns driving the pricing down, but volumes have been weak coming out of the recession and have remained that way. maybe it is fewer households and just people cutting back. it is definitely a long-term issue. >> a lot of the stocks when you think about the consumer stocks they are defensive stocks, everybody has to buy tooth paste and toilet paper and towels. but what we're beginning to see is the margins in some of the companies are being squeezed because they have to discount so much and do inducements through coupons to get people to buy. how material are these effects on those companies? >> i would say they're somewhat material. the bigger impact we see in terms of expectations coming down, in terms of how much the
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companies are going to your honor -- down, are mostly become of the dollar, what is really happening is emerging markets like brazil and china have slowed down so there is less growth elsewhere. and what that means is these companies are fighting more aggressively for the growth here in the u.s. >> so do those discounts really help? do they bring in more growth? >> yeah, what we're seeing is it is not bringing in more growth for the categories, the volums s have been weak the past couple of years, we see people not moving out of their parents' houses, not having kids, when echb is competing harder the prices go down, the overall level of volume doesn't go up. it is just fighting for more share. >> it is important, the discount being important but not as important as a stronger dollar
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and not as important as slower growth in some of the emerging markets and less mature markets, but turn to some of the stocks in the category that you actually like. leading off with monster beverage, which is a controversial company, john, and a single product company to my mind, they may have other versions of the monster beverage, but this is not a company without baggage. >> no, they definitely have baggage, we upgraded the stock in december, what we learned is although there is concern about the marketing and they may need to change the marketing up, most of the consumers who buy monster drinks are looking for extra caffeine and energy. the product actually has less caffeine than the normal starbucks company. so while we think there are marketing tweaks they may have to do we don't think there is wholesale changes. >> john, we're going to have to leave it there, thank you so much for coming on the program. up next, a week to go before
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taxes are due, if you are a late filer, that would be me. tip the that may help you avoid leaving money on the table. some more news on geral motors today, some more on the highway safety latest crash te, th is the sisuv rating of good, the bh only nine tested received a may ,ehe gmc terrain. the highlander earned an d a atd fiy, is ju a goefore ur federal taxe due. if you have not done your 10-40s yet there is still some time,
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and if you're a last minute filer sharon epperson has last-minute advice on getting the return. >> the tax clock is ticking, yet one out of five taxpayers still have not filed their taxes, many late filers may be doing a refund. this year the average refund is $2800, according to the irs, yet many of taxpayers will wind up leaving money on the table. we found out 50% had inaccuracies, one in five actually left money on the table to the tune of about $500. >> it is not just a missed signature or a typo on a security number, last year filers failed to claim a billion to which they were entitled. according to h & r block, and the same thing could happen this year. still there are strategies you can take advantage of, some of them for the last time, tax professionals are keeping a close eye on the provisions that are called extenders.
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>> the extenders is essentially a bundle of tax provisions which are not permanent, they would have to be extended for people to claim. they have been extended four times out of the last seven years. but at this point, some of the really popular tax breaks, 2013 could be the last year to claim them. >> the tax breaks impact millions of and homeowners and other taxpayers. 2013 may be the last opportunity for filers to claim deductions for college tuition and fees, teacher's expenses, mortgage insurance premiums and local and state sales taxes. there are new options that have come this tax season. if you're self-employed and work out your home there is an easier way to claim the tax deduction, multiply the square feet up to $1500, while charitable deductions are not new tax breaks, this way to claim one is often overlooked. if you are driving around to do
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the volunteer work you actually get a mileage deduction. >> if you're a very late filer and have not filed your return, april 15 is the deadline, the government is holding $760 million in unclaimed refunds, but after the 15th, that money becomes the property of the united states treasury. i'm sharon epperson. >> i am leaving after the show and getting a tax break. >> that is the report for us, i'm susie gharib, thank y for joining us. and i'm tyler mathisen. wish me luck as i go to my accountant. have a good evening, we'll see you back here tomorrow night.
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revolutionary in video game design. in his 30 year design he's built games for every platform and his work includes the legendary sonic the hedge hog. here he talks about gaming and rich element of electronic arts. majority funding is provided by the intel corporation. usually what happens in the game business that you talk about what people have worked on, i have a small list on here and it's

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