tv Squawk Box CNBC June 8, 2017 6:00am-9:01am EDT
>> live from new york where business never sleeps, this is "squawk box." >> good morning, everybody. welcome to "squawk box" here on cnbc. we are live from the nasdaq market sight in times square. i'm become becky quick along with joe kernen and andrew ross sorkin. let's take a look at equity markets this morning. they're up once again after closing higher yesterday. stocks yesterday moving up after the release of comey's testimony. they didn't see any smoking guns. some morning, you can see dow futures are indicated up by about 24 points. s&p futures up by just over two, the nasdaq up by eight. overnight in asia, take a look and you'll see that the asian markets have been trading cautiously. the nikkei is down by about .3%. closed down by .3%. the hang seng and the shanghai composites ended up by .3%.
in europe this morning, as everything is under way, we'll be talking a lot more about what's happening there. but you can see the dax is up by .3%. the cac is up by .25%. the ftse is flat. the ten-your yield that we've been watching so closely after it's been sitting right around 2.15% for the ten-year is a little -- the yield is a little higher, pricer are a little lower. let's check out the currency board. the dollar index yesterday hit its lowest ten-year level before ending the day flat. this morning, the dollar is up across the board sitting at 112 for the euro. dollar/yen is at 110. if you take a look at crude oil prices, this was the big story yesterday, krooul crude oil is down by over 5% yesterday. the lowest settlement in a month after surprise inventory builds. you can see this morning, the prices are rebounding slightly. wti up 42 cents. back above $46 at $46.14. >> let get you caught up on the big top stories of the day. polls are now officially open
for the uk election. the ruling conservative party led by prime minister theresa may looking to increase 17-seat majority that it currently holds in the house of commons. the latest poll says the labor party is unlikely to win a majority, but could force a hung parliament where neither side holds more than half the seats. we're going to get a live report from london in just a couple of minutes where will is handinging out. in europe, the ecb will announce its latest rate decision. the central bank is expected to maintain its $2.6 trillion bond buying program and subzero interest rates. inflation has remained below ecb targets and wage growth has been sluggish despite a strong run in a decade. washington watch, we are here now less than four hours away from what is being described as the main event, former head of the fbi joem james comey director's testimony on capitol hill. >> it was a bit of a surprise yesterday when the senate
intelligence committee released the written testimony from james comey. that set off a flurry of headlines. let me bring you one of the key exchanges that comey details of the nine interactions he had with president trump. he details five in his written testimony and here is the crux of it all, the big moment when he said to the president, he was meeting with the president, the president said to comey, i hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting flynn go. he is a good guy. i hope you can let this go. i replied, that is comey, i replied only that he is a good guy. in fact, i had a.positive experience dealing with mike flynn when he was a colleague as director of the defense intelligence agency at the beginning of my term at fbi. i did not say i would let this go. now, this is problematic testimony for trump because on two occasions, both trump and the white house itself have denied that the president ever requested in any way, shape or form that comey back off the flynn investigation.
they've also denied that the president asked a loyalty pledge of comey. both things that comey asserts here in the testimony. there are some silver linings here for the white house in the sense that comey does confirm that he gave assurances to the president that he was not under personal investigation and also in the sense that comey very much narrows the scope here of what he says the president was asking, not to back off of the entire russia investigation, but just to back off of the flynn piece of that. so that's a bit of a narrowing there. we got some reaction from the president's outside council last night. he says the president is pleased mr. comey has finally publicly confirmed his private reports that the president was not under investigation in any russian probe. the president feels completely and totally vindicated. he is eager to continue to move forward with his agenda. so we'll see where the question and answer goes in the live testimony today that begins at 10:00 east coast time. you can imagine that the main question that comey will be asked today is does all of this,
all of the detail that comey laid out, does it amount to obstruction of justice by the president of the united states? whether he answers that question and what his answer is will be very much hanging in the balance today, guys. >> that quote was verbatim of when the memo was leaked. that quote was -- that was exact -- i mean, i felt like it was deja vu. that was the quote that we already had. and we've had -- when did that come out? like a mop. we've already parsed that language every which way with about whether it is obstruction or what it implies. we've also parsed whether the denial that you talked about that the white house did, whether that actually is a denial because there's a difference between saying i'm ordering you to drop this probe and god, it would be nice if you guys would see fit to move beyond this. he's a good guy. we've parsed all that language. so the questioning probably coget interesting to get more out of comey and see what he
says, maybe inadvertently. he doesn't slip, though. he's like mr. robot. he knows exactly you know, ease had a lot of experience. but -- >> look, there's some dramatic detail in here that's -- >> i was worried about you today spp. >> why? >> because i don't think this is going to result in impeachment. you're handling it just fine. but tomorrow is friday. >> you know what? it's so sunny out. >> there's no rain. so there's reason to be happy. >> there's reason to be happy. >> even though this isn't goinging to happen. >> i am not rooting one way or the other. >> you know what i mean. >> i'm only rooting for a good story. >> well, you got that. let's talk russia, let's talk the hookers, then. can you believe that, eamon, that 90% of what they're talking about is russian hookers? where are we in the world right now? >> it's tough for a white house press shop when you are spinning an fbi director's statement that the president said he never had anything to do with hookers,
right? >> wait a minute, wait a minute, never had anything to do with russian hookers. >> exactly, specify the type of hookers. obviously, that's a reference to the so-called dirty dossier which comey said he had to brief the president on. he said he briefed him on it one-on-one. it was so embarrassing to the president that he didn't want to force him to deal with a crowd of people, just one guy and comey was the guy. that's how their relationship began between trump and comey. you can imagine writ goes from there. which is why so many people will be watching today. >> now that i think about it, eamon, i'm shocked that washington and sexual pick dill lows are -- >> you know, i've been doing this for a while, joe, and i've covered a lot of sex scandals. >> when is it not? >> every gender, every type, every age, everything. >> so let's not act like we're -- i know, like our sensibilities are being disturbed here. we're going to survive. although i don't want my kids necessarily watching everything.
>> one thing i have not seen before, it was in this written testimony, he described where he and the president had dinner the at the white house, he thought it would be a family event, comey arrives and it's just him and the president. he said there were only two navy stewards coming in and out of the room and that's when he said the president asked for his loyalty pledge and, as comey describes it, there was just a stare down over the dinner table in the green room as comey simply refused to answer the question, looked the president in the eye, didn't change his facial expression and didn't respond at all and there was a long, awkward silence. a stare down and that level of detail is something else. >> that is -- we've heard this time and time again from others, that that level of detail is what's going to -- >> hey, the -- on my i want to get off twitter, but every day i see something that makes me not --
>> you follow me, right? >> i've got to watch you, eamon. you're right, i do. we've had a couple little -- yeah, we do. i saw this on twitter. robert gates said he felt pressured by obama to tell him he would be loyal to obama. did that happen? do you know about that? >> that's a good question. i do not know that. >> i'll send it to you. i saw that this morning. it's all over the place. gates said he felt pressured to tell obama he would be loyal. >> and that's the question, right? so what was this conversation about? was it just a general rah, rah, we're all on the team together kind of a speech? your job is on the line, i need loyalty and i need you to drop this -- >> look, the journal's op-ed pages say that at worst, mr. comey's account of mr. trump reveals a willful and naive narcissist who believes he can charm or subtly intimidate the fbi director but who has no idea how washington works. they say this is not new information.
they don't think it rises to any level. >> that's the chris christie defense yesterday. he said, look, the president just doesn't know how things are done in washington. he doesn't know what the standards of acceptability are. this is a new york business guys and this is how new york business guys talk. you guys would know better than do i if that's how new york business guys talk behind closed door. that's certainly not how presidents interact with fbi directors. >> i thought it was chris ray. i did. but you kind of look a little bit like him, john. not really, right? you're younger and better looking, obviously. let me intruts you. we're joined by john car lynn, former assistant attorney general for the justice department's national security division, also served as chief of staff for former fbi director on rolle robert mu eller. comey took very good notes because -- and whoever leaked it had very good access to his original memo because that's the exact language that we saw, that we knew about probably a month
ago. anything totally new that we didn't -- that we didn't know that was in the written testimony? >> well, look, i don't go off leaks. so until i saw -- >> until you saw it. >> until you saw the notes released yesterday, now from the point of view of a prosecutor or law enforcement agent, whether or not someone obstructs justice is you look at their intent, were they corruptly trying to influence an investigation? so you've got to prove there was an investigation, there was an attempt to influence it and what we have now is written testimony from the fbi director which was an fbi parlance, you call this a 302. you would write down what happened exactly after it happened. you have a very vivid account of the memo of the fact that he's literally writing some of these out in his car after leaving the conversation.. so it's a present sense recorded that gives it extra reliability of the statement. >> lots of details, too. >> lots of details. the president says to him essentially, can can you make this flynn thing go away? don't -- and i don't want you to
investigate flynn. then you look at all the surrounding circumstances and he asks for his loyalty, he's called him again, can you make the cloud of this russia go away? after firing him, the president said it had to do with this russia thing and there's a press conference where he's asked, did you ever do anything to interfere with the flynn investigation and he says no. >> so is it obstruction of justice because he fired comey snm is that where the poeshlg obstruction of justice comes in because he wasn't getting his way when you look at all these things? >> you have to look at it together as package and say do all of these acts together including and most significantly firing the man in charge of the investigation, was he doing that because he wanted to influence the investigation? because he didn't like the way that it was going. >> but obstruction of justice is pretty hard to prove, right? >> well, the thing here that you have to remember which is why today's hearing is a historical
event, under current justice department guidance, the prosecutor, special counsel, my former boss, bob mueller, he can't bring a charge against a sitting president. there's guidance that says you can't bring charges against the president. what does that mean? it means the judge and jury is congress. so what we're hearing today is a credibility. do they believe that this one-on-one conversation with the director of the fbi's boss, the attorney general of the united states is ordered out of the room, was there something improper in that conversation where with that intent he's trying to stop this investigation? >> so, look, there's people who are looking at this from different sides, maybe if congress ultimately is the arbiter of this from the different sides of the political aisle so the incentives might be slightly different. i'm going mention this op-ed, i helped prosecute watergate. commy's statement is sufficient evidence for an obstruction of justice case. this is phillip allen laca are
rba. my question for you is, if you were in the office and the guidance was different, meaning he wasn't the president, he was a man on the street but this is the presentation of evidence, would you prosecute him? >> so it's a good question, andrew, but i want to distinguish between what the bar is for congress versus the specific federal statutes that they have. there's a couple different ones on obstruction of justice. for congress, they've only impeached -- brought articles of impeachment against two presidents, nixon and clinton. with both of those presidents, obstruction of justice was one of the high crimes or misdemeanors. it's a much broader actual standard than the criminal standard is. and for the criminal purposes, there's a hook that doesn't exist for congress. so for criminal, you have to prove what type of proceeding this was. you know, was a grand jury impanelled? it's not clear if an fbi investigation alone would qualify for the specific statue of obstruction of justice. that doesn't matter for
congress. so for congress, i think their standard would be is he trying to impede an investigation and there's pretty strong evidence, if you believe director comey, and today he's like a witness, any other witness and essentially in front of a judge and jury and they have to decide whether they believe him. >> it's a republican-controlled congress, though. >> well, at the end of the day, they are elected represents and -- >> but comey said said under oath that he didn't pressure him and he didn't feel -- i don't know if comey matters because we just said that what will comey said about whether it's a prosecutable offense. that's not his point. it wasn't his place in the clinton -- in that situation, either quarterback yet he exercise it for some reason i think he is crazy in that respect. i don't know that it matters beforehand that he said he didn't feel pressured and didn't think it was obstruction or whether it matters now. as you just said, if you look at the broad -- i guess, letter of the law specifically, maybe it does. but i hate to tell you, i don't think it's going to happen.
i just don't -- and even though i hear what you say, i just -- when it's all said and done, i'm not going to say it, maybe i will say it. at the end of the day, i don't think it comes close to what you need to prove obstruction for a significant president and get an impeachment. i just don't think. that's why i said, andrew is doing well today, but i don't think -- the it's not going to happen. >> but i didn't realize there was a distinction between a criminal prosecution of this and a -- >> i'm putting the politics aside. does it meet on the merits, number one, the director, i think you're right that he's a fact witness today. and for obstruction of justice, it doesn't matter if you actually materially affected the investigation. it matters, again, was your intent corrupt? were you trying to stop this investigation because you wanted to. and think about how serious this is. put aside politics. if a president could fire an fbi director, because they just don't like who they're investigating, then that would poe lit size our fbi in a way we
haven't had in a hundred years of fbi -- >> and honestly, comey said in march that he didn't feel like he was being pressured. >> do you think it matters -- he will be asked, as you know, just very directly, not did you -- they'll ask him wle felt pressured or not, but they'll ask him the question i asked you, did he obstruct justice? and i imagine he won't answer the question or he'll dance around it or say that's for you to decide. >> there's certain things he can't say with an ongoing investigation. >> whatever it is. so if you're congress, what is the thing you would want to hear from him if he can't answer that specific question? >> if i'm congress, i want to look -- i want to get to the fact and i want to engage his credibility. because i recognize at the end of the day, it should be coming back to me as judge and jury. so i don't care about his -- i'm not using him as a legal
witness. i'll get tons of other legal witnesses. i want to get all the facts out about whether or not someone was trying to interfere with the investigation, anything that might give you a hint as to what was in the president's mind when he fired director comey and when he asked him to stop the investigation of flynn. and one thing that's critical there, and you guys have talked about it some is the president then goes out, there's a credibility contest because the president said it didn't happen. so at the end of the day -- he's saying i didn't tell him to drop the investigation. he sort of said could you see fit to let in this go, he's a good guy. that's not saying drop the investigation, right? i think we're parsing all this different language. >> there have been cases brought so you can do something legal like fire someone and it can stim be obstruction of justice if with the reasonable you're doing it is to stop the investigation. >> i don't know whether that happens in had case with the president. high bar. very high bar. it didn't happen to a presidential candidate. the bar wasn't high enough for -- he listed every offense
you possibly needed to bring a charges against hillary clinton in the e-mail. he didn't do it because she was a presidential candidate. so there are extenuating circumstances. >> would you agree with that? >> i think it's totally different because, again, this is a -- if a sitting president -- >> he's in more of a position of shouldn't be doing it, obviously, but i'm just talking about reality and whether it happens. wbl that -- counting votes is a different thing and not my area. >> okay. thank you. >> a reminder, you can watch live coverage of the today's hearing on cnbc starting at 10:00 eastern. mom gets breakfast in bed...
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welcome back, everybody. let's get back to the broader markets. joining us right now is julian emanuel, executive director for u.s. executive and derivative strategy at ubs and chris retzler, needham's growth fund portfolio manager. guys, welcome. you probably heard that last conversation we were just having. this is all the talk in washington. what we care about is what this means for markets, as well. markets rallied on this because there wasn't a significant smoking gun that people could immediately see. but julian b, what happens now? what are you watching for today and how much does this matter for the markets? >> well, it's the proverbial is anything there there? and we don't know exactly what specifically we'll be watching for, but the point is, is there going to be something that is judged by investors as likely to
derail the potential progression of legislation and initiatives in washington. we'll just have to say. >> fair to say that wall street is watching? >> no question about it. >> but isn't the larger calculus, even if you thought had that trump was going to be impeached and this was going to up end his presidency, that pence steps in and i could make the argument that that would actually even hasten some of the policy issues that people think have been sidelined by all of this. >> look, you could make that argument, but i would suggest that what we've seen so far is that washington is an even more volatile place, despite the fact that the markets are less volatile. you just don't know how the progression between republicans on both sides of the issues and democrats is going to unfold. >> but clearly, the market is -- there's more certainty in the market today relative to what we're talking about, what seems uncertain. isn't the certainty that
maybe -- is thing certain tuth that nothing is going to get done? >> no, the certainty in the market right now is -- it's not certainty, it's patience. we are waiting for the economy to reconcile itself towards the levels of confidence that people believe are going to manifest, given the fact that you have potential for pro growth agendas being initiated. >> chris, do you agree with that? >> well, i think if we can move on beyond some of this noise and news, we can get back to more of the business discussion which is are we going to see tax reform, are we going to see tax re-patriatition. if you're talking to management companies, i don't think they're probably changing what they're investing on this comb know news. i think the testimony yet showed you that there wasn't all that much in there. it didn't cause the market to drop. so we -- you know, we've seen
under the curtain here. i think if we can get past this, we'll be looking towards the end of the summer when maybe some policies become more certain. >> is that something that fuels additional gains from here or just keeps the market at the support levels? it seems to me like the market is not necessarily expecting anything to happen this year. >> well, i think the timing has always been further out than what they thought back in december and january. so that's where we've been positioned. but we still see some very supportive areas in the marketplace, the high yield market continues to remain supportive of small cap companies where we spend most of our time. so we're not seeing the breakdown yet. the yield curve is flattening. that is certainly something to keep an eye on. there is geopolitical risk out there, which is more having an impact on energy. but for the most part right now, it is patient investing that will probably be rewarded. >> the other huge story today, the uk elections. how much of an issue is that, how much rur thinking about that, julian? >> well, look, there's no question about the fact that the
unfolding next couple of years into brexit is going to be a very delicate issue. it has to be managed properly. but, again, here there is a view that may's party is going to at least retain power, that the pollsters after having a very bad 2016 appeared to be on the right side of things at this point. if there is an upset, that certainly throws the calculations off. . but, again, what's critical is -- and what we've seen over the last year is that no matter who ends up taking control one really do need some sort of cooperation to deal with these big issues. >> yesterday, and -- there's an expression, a cockeyed optimist.. he's not. >> he's not wearing rose colored glasses. >> we asked him what are the chances obamacare repeal and reform gets done.
he gave it six out of ten to get done. so the first time obamacare went down, the repeal went down in flames. people said it's done and it's over until, you know, they do tax reform. suddenly, these guys, whatever it was at the point of a gun, the house, you know -- felt the political need to do it and pass it before you knew. now anthem just left ohio. other stuff continues to happen as this collapses. the senate could surprise us. mcconnell is not saying what's going on right now. they could surprise us. >> larry kudlow said the way you make it -- >> if you -- if you expand -- interest that's not. this could happen. you know, i was -- >> it may will happen. i was making a very different argument which is actually today is a complete side show because if you thought the president -- >> that's -- he said the market is already going up because pence is going to be president sflp no, no, i'm not saying the market is going up because they think that's going to happen.
i'm saying either way -- i could make the argument that actually if he was impeached, it would be better for the arguments. >> he already did. he's not going anywhere. pence is not going to be president. cnbc.com wrote an article yesterday, what is a pence presidency going to look like? it's not going to happen. >> i'm just -- >> but you're right, most democrats think thekdz put elizabeth warren in after trump gets impeached because they don't know how it's going to work. >> you guys are both positive on the markets here? >> maybe joe biden, but probably not elizabeth warren. it would be pence and paul ryan is after him and some other republican after that. >> gentlemen, thank you. >> i'm just suggesting to you -- >> careful what you wish for. >> it may be worse than these other ones for a progressive agenda. for you progress agenda leave trump in because he don't get anything done. coming up, uk voters heading to the polls today. we're going to get a live report from london next. and then, crude prices tumbling in yesterday's session. wti logging its worst session
. morning, everybody. futures are indicated up once again. dow futures up by 28 points. s&p futures up by 3.5. nasdaq up by 10. you have comey's testimony coming up, you've got those uk electiones and we're waiting to see all of those issues. >> uk voters are heading to the polls today. let's get to wilfred frost in london with the latest. wilf, i'm going to listen and i'm not going to say anything. over here, i don't think we're supposed to really comment. >> i hope you're gon going to comment. >> no.the. >> but let might get the first minute out of the way. polls have been open for 4 1/2 hours. leaders have started casting their own personal votes. if there's one crucial level of perspective i want to put on how this campaign has played out, it's the level of expectation
coming into. yes, theresa may's star has fallen. she had a 20 point lead and she's not now as popular. area jeremy corbyn has done better than expected. but all of that is relative to expectations. some perspective on theresa may's lead, albeit reduced as it is. she, according to the ft poll of polls this morning has an 8-point lead on 44% of the vote. the current conservative majority of around 20 delivered by david cameron in 2015 was with a 4 1/2 point lead on 37% of the vote. that is why people are so confident that theresa may will win another majority. the question, of course, how big is that majority? now, in terms of the sentiment on the ground, i described it as disappointment and apathy. no deal is better than a bad deal that read no prime minister
is better than a bad prime minister. and that does sum up the sentiment here on the ground, albeit in light hearted fashion, both because of the level of campaigning being seen as pet poor on all sides, but also the fact that this is the third vote in as many years that uk voters have had the to endure. guys. >> very interesting, wilf. in a nutshell, i don't know, really, what is it that in the last three months that has soured the average brit on theresa may? the one that -- the average brit that had been behind her 100% and is now less so because we've talked about it before, i would think that these incidents, these horrific incidents that are happening way too much, i would have thought that would have strengthened her. and as you correctly pointed out early on, that wouldn't necessarily be the case. so what was it, then? >> well, it has, actually, in the final week in a way. i've come to that. firstly, why has may's lead
slipped inspect the headline reason is she's facing the scrutiny this year that she didn't last year. she became prime minister off conservative leadership vote, not general election. the scrutiny she's faced over the last couple of months has tested her in two main ways. she tried to frame herself as the only strong and stable leader that could deliver brexit. then in the manifesto as a simple policy error on social care, she delivered a huge you-turn. that undermined this idea that she was a strong and stable leader. secondly, she did have a lot of personal pop larry two or three months ago, but she's been seen as overcontroling, just a tight team around her, not listening to her cab threat, not listening to the rest of her mps. and that's undermined that personal popularity. you mentioned the terror attacks. after manchester, strangely, despite that being such a horrific, huge event, it didn't really change the nature of the campaign. this week, it has been front and center largely because even
though the london attack, terrible as it was had fewer deaths, it kind of established a trend, three attack necessary three months. it's really pushed that issue front and center and, joe, you're right, a poll out yesterday by the sun and survey monkey asked the question of who do you trust most on the issue of security? 47% said may, 27% said corbyn fp. that has helped her offset the decline she saw on the previous two months. >> that clears things up, wilf. we will be -- when it saw 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., that's here, right? is that on our time? what are are we talking about over there until it's totally done, wilf? >> so, yeah, 5:00 p.m. as you said eastern time is when the polls close here, 10:00 p.m. local time. >> okay. >> we'll get the first exit poll indication of results and that's when markets, no doubt, will be reacting. >> you would be very surprised if she lost the majority, i guess, wouldn't you?
>> very surprised. significantly surprised. even the closest of polls is a big spread. 1 to 12 points is the spread at the moment. but even the closest still has a lead. in terms of what could be the wild card -- >> if it's 1% win southbound is it a softer brexit? is that what it portends, is that what we should glean from this? although we can talk about this later, will. >> it's -- that's very hard to say. interestingly, back in april when people thought she would do well, the pound did rally, which you would think is converse to a harder brexit. >> well, that's you, not me. i think the pound is going to soar with a hard brexit, get out from under the yield of the unelectriced bureaucrats and get back to the greatness of the uk. it depends on where you're sitting. i'm going to eventually get you over here, back to -- you know what i was watching the other day, wilf? we've going to go, though. churchill saved the world. i was watching something on the history channel. his resolve and his moxy saved
the world. saved the world. i mean, what a great -- and here you are listening to these people in belgium now, these -- get back to that, my ma'am man, get back to that. >> i don't disagree in any way with your praise of sir winston churchill. >> love him. >> winston. >> good name. >> thanks, wie lf. >> i think i need a cigarette. we're going to talk about crude prices because they are bouncing back. joining us with more on what to expect from the energy markets, mike smith. good morning to you. we just said that this was on inventories. we could also argue about the sort of saudi/iran public spat, if you will, and what that means. but when we say they're rebounding, i mean, they're currently rebounding, but are they rebounding for good or what? >> it's probably a little bit of a dead cat bounce that we're seeing here. yesterday we sold off, as you
said, on the inventories. surprise bill. they're not just for crude, but for the products, as well. the fact that there is a low likelihood of escalation of geopolitical tension this the middle east means we're not getting too much of a bounce here. >> i want to read you something. some the fortune magazine. normally when saudi and iran, the traditional rivals for dominance of the region clash in public like this, oil prices spike. they go up. however, traders right now appear more worried that the friction will unravel a deal that forces producers to produce below their capacity in an effort to keep porld prices up. is that right? >> i don't think so. i think what we've got a situation of here more is just that we have low prices, the opec production deal is not necessarily work at the moment because they guys aren't cut canning back. they want higher prices from here, really, but they're not necessarily all willing to make those cuts. that's why we are where we are
now. >> what's the betting line as we move through the surgical? >> with prices? >> yes b, if i want to bite by the barrel. >> probably we'll go a little bit lower from here, sort of 44 maybe. >> so this is -- we're going to continue to dip? can we get back to 40? is it -- >> i think there's limited downside from here. i think we get too much buying interest coming in because there's demand coming through. but at the same time, as well, like joe was mentioning, u.s. exports increasing here in the u.s. and they really are ramping up. but that's because these bargain basement prices here in the u.s. that we're seeing for that wti price. but you've got nigeria, libya putting more crude on to the market. and what that is doing is basically weakening that brent price. .you've got wti, which has been sort of pulled down because u.s. production is increasing. but if we see those come closer to parity, then that will stop those exports, they'll keep more crude in the u.s. and then we
keep prices in these mid 40s levels. >> mid 40s levels. matt, thank you. >> thank you. >> great to see you. appreciate it. coming up, the uk election, we will get an update on the latest polls and sentiment in london this morning. that's coming up at the top of the hour. plus, former fbi director game comey is set to testify before congress today. we have details and a close here at the president's pick to replace comey. plus, what this all means for the markets. then the eyb is set to release its latest decision on interest rates. we have reaction coming up at 7:45 eastern. stay tuned. you are watching "squawk box" right here on krn. with advanced technology, so we can make sure oil and gas get where they need to go safely. because safety is never being satisfied. and always working to be better. apparently, i kept her up all night. she said the future freaks her out. how come no one likes me, jim? intel does! just think of everything intel's doing right now with artificial intelligence.
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welcome back, everybody. i'm it's time for the executive edge. many amazon shoppers were sent to a page that said sorry with, something went wrong on our end. a picture of a dog appeared each time. amazon hasn't commented. outages are pretty rare for amazon. >> in our amazon news, the the company has stepped up lending
to third party sellers on its site who are looking to grow their business. a company executive said amazon has loaned more than $1 billion to sellers during the year compared to 1.5 billion total over the five years prior. boosting sales for third-party merchant sess lucrative to amazon which takes a cut of the transactions on its site. loans range from $100,000 to $750,000. sellers have said interest rates are between 6% and 14%. did you ever see robo cop? they're in the future with robo cop, there's basically one company. >> that makes everything. >> not makes everything. loans you money, sells you groceries, delivers the groceries to you. >> it called the company town. it existed in the past. >> there may be the s&p 1 some day. >> in china, there's a company like that. it's called alibaba. >> yeah. >> they'll loan you money on -- >> absolutely. but amazon is doing web stuff,
too, and our flying cars are going to be amazon. and we're going to be exploring mars with amazon. >> i have an amazon credit card, man. >> do you? >> 5% off. all charges on amazon. it's a great deal. as you know, i love a great deal. >> i know you do. >> i do. >> i can't remember the name of the company, but there's really just one company left at that point. so i mean, i'm watching it happen. the futures -- a lot of times that happens. everything that happened in seinfeld came true. coming up, blackrock out with a new report on political risks to the markets. this may have been generated by humans or machines. we're not really sure any more with blackrock. that is next. as we head to break, here is sa quick check on what is happening in the european markets right now. ray's always been different.
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risk globally right now but i guess it on the map since it's the day. >> right. well, it's definitely on the map for the u.k. as you say, it's not probably a global risk. to us and to markets the significance is largely in relation to what this maneans f the brexit negotiations and to what extent the markets will mack it more likely or less likely that we're headed toward a very hard brexit. i think that's the main thing investors will be looking for and more specifically -- >> i'm sorry, we're going to have a delay and have problems and talk over each other again and again. is it even worthwhile the effort to cover all the black swans, you know, north korean mislaunch to the west coast or some horrific event somewhere that we
really can't anticipate or are we really looking at thanksgiving like italian banks or the disillusion of the eu? >> i'd say there's two different types of risks. one is event risks, something that's going to happen right before the election. and in practice it hasn't been that relevant because markets beyond the target and that's the right thing to do. and then you have your political black swans, which frankly you can't predict the timing and if they happen, the impact will be so beg that, frankly, it's really outside of the realm of what you can plan for in a portfolio. but when you have a number of the potential black swans on the
horizon, it increases the level of political uncertainty. it probably does contribute to weakness and investments because businesses are feeling more uncertain about the future. >> it's tough. it's a real quandary. i've said it before. if it was the end of the world, does it mart whether you're in cash or bonds or stocks? maybe you do need gold if you happen to live through it. and the risk is not zero. iran could develop a nuclear weapon. there are places that have nuclear weapons right now, not just north korea, given an argument with a neighbor, you never know how it's going to start. it's the previous war -- i don't know how you do it. i guess you know what i'd do? i'd say we can't do that, let's look at every single bank in italy and decide whether that's
going to be where it starts or greece or -- am i right on that? >> well, i think definitely in terms of planning for the black swan, it's just too hard and we don't recommend doing because obviously if something like that happens, you don't want to load up your portfolio with safe assets. for every day it doesn't happen, you're losing money compared to everything else you could be invested in. what we do recommend keeping an eye on, though, is the long-term and allying trends you still had more or less 40% of the voters who favor an anti-market,
anti-globanti anti-globanti anti-globalizati anti-globalization. frankly within a matter of years we're going to see the bad kind of policy responses coming back to the floor. so this is very much something we're keeping an eye on. >> so you want market-driven policy. >> the popular revolt in the u.k. results in a lot of new highs for a lot of the equity markets. i don't know which way to hope for that either. it could be scary down the road but so far so good. >> go ahead. >> welcome. >> thank you. we'll see you again soon. >> when we return, a very busy morning for the markets. we have james comey's testimony, the ecb decision. "squawk box" returns in a moment. a used car,
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voting under way across the u.k. as brits head to the polls to pick a new government. plus comey heads to the hill. the former fbi director delivering highly anticipated testimony this morning. and it's a trifecta of market-moving news straight ahead. the second hour of "squawk box" begins right now. >> announcer: welcome back. you're watching "squawk box," live from the nasdaq market site in times square. >> good morning. welcome back to "squawk box."
i'm andrew ross sorkin along with becky quick. nasdaq looking to open 15 points higher and the s&p 500 a little over -- the big news is the u.k. elections in europe right now which we have been watching very, very carefully. pretty much everything up across the board except the ftse 100 is off marginally. >> we are watching a pound at a two-week high. we await the european central bank's policy announcement. that decision is expected in less than 45 minutes. back here in the u.s. investors will be hanging on the testimony of form aer fbi director james comey. markets turned higher after the release of comey's testimony. that testimony did not seem to
include any smoking gun and included comments the president was not under investigation. as a result stocks turned higher with that release. the markets are moving higher ahead of all of these events. for more on the latest of today's big stories, eamon javers is in washington. litz begin with wilfred frost. >> reporter: good morning, becky. theresa may sits with an 8-point lead according to the "financial times" poll of poll this morning. that's why people are confident she will get a majority. but that is from a range of polls showing a 12-point lead down to just a one-point lead. could there be a surprise. here is the ceo of the polling company that puts her lead at only one point. >> we did have an 18-point lead
for the conservatives mid may and they had a disastrous campaign and that's reflected in our figures. it was indicate 41 to conservatives, 40 to labor, which would indicate a hung parliament territory and possibly the prime minister resigning. it's quite a big deal. >> if you had to point to one reason why you think you're right and the companies are wrong, what would you say? >> the world is showing the trends but it's this turnout question and i think they're being too aggressive. >> if he is right and we do have a hung parliament, we would likely see significant weakness in sterling. thereree at the moment let's move on to the comey story. eamon javers in washington. >> one of the big questions going into today is will the
comey testimony move markets. let's get a accepts sense of wh saga, has actually moved the markets. on january 27th that was the first time that trump and comey had dinner at the white house. that we know from the comey testimony was the moment of the famous stare-down over dinner at the green room. trump met again with chroomey, asked him to drop the investigation saying "i hope you can steer your way clear of letting this go." on may 3rd comey testified
before the senate judiciary committee. that's the famous remark he made when he said he's mildly nauseous over the idea his actions in the clinton investigation may have swayed the election. that comment and that testimony seems to have prompted the president to take the next step on may 9th in firing james comey on may 10th. and that's the day when he allegedly shared the sensitive intelligence with the russians and on may 17th, justice department appointed former fbi director robert mueller as special counsel in the russia investigation. as for the market reaction, there are two days that stand out, march 21st and may 17th. those are the worst two days since the trump inauguration. the dow and nasdaq fell
following the confirmation of russian election interference and the other would be when mueller was appointed special counsel. no doubt today, guys, markets are going to be closely watching this testimony. the question is whether we'll see anything new or if all of the details have been revealed in that written testimony that we got yesterday. >> so i like that eamon. we talked about how i needled you with the twitter. people should follow us actually. >> well, people should follow me anyway. >> but when i needle you and say there trump goes again taking credit for the 3 trillion in market cap gains. >> he did, yeah. >> he does. and my point to you is if he was as bad or policies were as bad
as the democrats would make out, it would be unlukely we'd be up 16% since november 9th. also, if we did go down like everybody said we would, if we lost $3 trillion -- just now, 400-point day that we were down, that absolutely is when it was questioning whether not trump, whether he stayed but whether his policies are hurt by, you know, by the appointment of the special counsel. so if you're going to def nutiny attribute that one, i think you can understand he could take credit for some of the 3 trillion. >> obviously as you say, the president is not standing in the way of this rally. if anything his policies are the things that have different -- >> that is such a mealy mouthed way of saying that these responses -- not standing in the way of something that was going to happen either way?
come on, eamon. >> what i just said, joe, was obviously the market rallied on the basis of these policies. they wanted to see tax cuts, deregulation, infrastructure and spending in this country all of that very much to what wall street was looking for. >> right. >> the on reason i flagged the fact that the president talks about the stock market -- >> because you live by the sword and die by the sword. >> other presidents haven't done that. that's one of the things we've seen with this president that's new and unique. all of the advisers, republicans and democrats, have told them for years don't talk about the stock market. it goes up and goes down. you want to talk about the broader economy and jobs for people. the president talks about the stock market as a scoreboard for his presidency. >> every time you talk about the obama eight years, was it a success, was it not. you got the low jobs will rate
but the critics will point out to not get to one year of single gdp growth and people come back immediately with the market double. they don't even attribute to the market was down 40% based on the financial crisis and the fed was at zero. you had zero interest rates the entire time. they immediately bring it up to me that obama doubled the stock market. >> i happen to believe that there is no dial inside the oval office that turns up o down the economy. it's a lot more complicated than that. i think presidents generally get too much credit when things are going well. they don't have all that much -- they can affect it indirectly. they can set policy antone. they can't move the needle on the stock market. >> you want to live like a republican vote like a democrat. it's because for some reason oaf the years there have been -- there may have been inflating it. in my view i think a lot of
democrats go into office like right after reagan or something. he sets it all up and clinton benefits from it. you've always heard democratic presidents are better for the market. >> they always blame the previous guy and say whatever happened before, it's not going well now. >> but when he was getting out of office, he was still blame being george bush for a lot of stuff. >> trump has blamed bush a couple of times for some things. >> he's a good target, all that money. they're going to throw flowers when we go into iraq. okay. anyway, eamon, thank you. >> we'll see you. >> i was just tweeting something to you right now as a matter of fact. if anyone wants to see it, you're going to have to follow me and eamon because i'm going to really needle him now. >> and i don't respond. >> you don't. >> no, i take the high road. >> high road. >> you don't believe in the high
road. >> but i wouldn't go up against me either. >> joining me now, president of the wells fargo investment institute, darrell krocronk. and you've never married diane swan because i wanted her to be diane swan cronk. comey, comey, comey, comey. anything to anticipate about this? >> donald trump is going to tn to be president. there's a few things that the market cares about but i think all this stuff in washington right now is not there. and if anything, the market's moving toward this belief that policy is probably not going to happen in '17 and they're pushing that expectation back because this noise just becomes a bit of a distraction.
short of that, i don't think we're going to get anything. i don't think anybody's expecting anything. >> i would agree with jonathan. it is consuming all the oxygen in d.c. you still have health care stuck in the senate. tax reformat this point looks like a number of bullet points on a single sheet of paper that's really not taken flight and gotten off. we're talking about a trillion dollars of infrastructure. >> that's the srnity in the market. >> that's what i was talking about -- >> i would argue there is a little bit of uncertainty. in the last week or two the dollar has come down, oil prices are coming down, oil has gone up. >> you can explain it by how much we have seen in supplies here. >> you've got a ten-year treasury below 2.2%. so even as the equity market as ground higher and some of those others are starting to pull back a little bit. >> you're tweeting eamon, aren't
you? >> tweeting eamon. you know, on four letter -- are you allowed to curse on twitter? >> on twitter? i mean, you're allowed to but not a good idea. >> not a good idea. >> to eamon? >> no, no, i'm kidding. that was a joke. so you guys are both convinced if it's tax reform, bullet points and no obamacare until 2018? i don't know. you remember what the house did? it was gone. three weeks later it was passed. supposedly it had been put on the back burner. >> the big story here, though, is that the likelihood of recession right now is really small. earnings expectations lk like they're 7% or 8% and the debate that people are having is why are we not having a better consumer, stronger wages when the labor market is so tight and
that's what the market cares about. >> what is the answer? do you think the answer is inflation is right around the corner or do you think there's a big are structural problem? >> it literally big institution, everything big hedge fund is having this debate. if i told you 4.3 unemployment rate, you're creating twice as many jobs ambassador people entering the labor market. you have a record number of help wanted signs. and you're saying, okay, take a guess on the way it's going to break? every one of us should guess it's going to break to the way up unless the economy is going to blow up and there's no indication. that's the call. what's interesting is the market doesn't break to the down side unless you move towards a recession. so a weak or good economy are probably both sufficient for the the market as long as the fed's not killing it. >> the previous recessions are the fed kills it a lot of times.
what's the -- is it possible that in this new low-rate environment that if rates doubled only to 4% that that could kill something or do we need an 8% or 9% that we used to do? could it be the change, the percentage change or does it go back to what we think of -- >> it's a lower number. >> really? so something as low as 4% could derail -- >> we estimated between now and a three and a half 10-year bond yield, it's like a get out of jail free card. >> because in the old days i think going to%, ubl got the structural -- >> do you remember volcker? we finally had stuck a stake in at like 19%. >> even when the fed from '03 to '06, every time they met, every
meeting, increased rates 17 times consecutively. you're not going to have an environment inlike that. if you did, you would tip over this growth that we have. >> and we're now talking about a globl and at. >> we've it and them from of to 14 trillion. in they'll go from 14 to 16. >> if if the fed is shrinking. we're not talking about a global draining of capitol. but they're moving in a more hawkish tone -- >> because we're going to go up before we come down. >> where do you think you are on the multiple expansion sort of scale sp. >> we did some work on this. in vast majority of the year
that woo don't have a recession, multiples go up 1 point. they'll go from 17 to 18 and 18 to 19 until the cycle end. when is your next recession? is it a 20 recession? >> what was the highest -- >> 30. the trailing 24 forward or something but -- >> but you're 20 trailing right now and multiples have gone from 02011 to today on 11 1/2 on 0s. >> when i walked to school uphill both way, there was a 16% mortgage rate. >> yes. >> my parents had one. >> i've had a chance to sell 13.5% triple a tax free bonds. that's a 26 percent guaranteed
return. 21.5% prime. >> my grandfather used to buy those bonds. no, he did because he used to tell me, you got to buy bonds. >> your grandfather. >> he was in retirement, he lived off of those bonds. >> you're talking about your grandfather. >> yes. >> had we come back, official data showed u.s. inventories rose in ten weeks. stay tuned. you are watching "squawk box" on cnbc. these days families want to be connected 24/7.
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oil bouncing back after hitting a one-month low. jackie deangelis joins us. >> good morning, andrew. it was crude's worst day in three months yesterday. the drop came on crude and r refined products. but the key could be gasoline demand. even with the holiday, it looks like it could be the weather. >> again, everybody blames the weather. >> everybody made fun of me when i reported that the models were calling for an el nino effect that would give as you coolers
are rainier summer. well, it's been cold and rainy. crude has every reason to rally right now, summer driving, geo political tensions and here we are testing 45. where do we go? there's evidence that opec members are cheating. people are worried about that. the new numbers say -- there's limited down side here but energy stocks and ets could see more pain, too. >> and it has to be the u.s., our production. opec could be cheating but we're the big ones. >> estimates are suggest we go could go from 9 million barrels a day to 10 billion barrels a day. we could ramp it up quite
quickly. >> thank you very much. when we return, the financial choice act is up for a house vote later today. this is designed to replace parts of the dodd fringe. >> 112-37. that ecb rate decision is straight ahead. the power of smart beta. power your client's portfolio with powershares. before investing, consider the fund's investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. call 800-983-0903 for the prospectus containing this information. read it carefully. distributed by invesco distributors inc. we cut the price of trades to give investors even more value. and at $4.95, you can trade with a clear advantage. fidelity, where smarter investors will always be.
good morning. welcome back to "squawk box" right here on cnbc. among the stories front and center, we're watching shares of alibaba this morning, the stock reacting positively after the chinese-based retailer projects revenue of 45 to 49%. you doesn't hear numbers that often. that stock up over 11% this morning. and shareholders will be voting to to approve core internet assets to verizon v.
and a policy statement from the european central bank, they are expected to leave key interest rates unchanged. >> today congress will vote to roll back the financial reform bill none as the dodd frank bill with the introduction the financial chose. >> >> also we're joined by american enterprise institute's policy studies director, michael shrahan. i can't imagine you're thrilled about the idea of repealing parts of it but what do think are the pro.
>> such as? such as the volcker rules and liquidity coverage rules. it's just an ideological swng in the other direction, rolling back the parts of dodd-frank that are likely bipartisan, like the resolution regime, which the them -- some of these provisions in there, are simple, smart policy. they have a come plant portal. where if you have a problem with your credit score and you think your bank did something wrong, you can complain and they'll publish the data pipt like yelp. imagine the government trying to ban yelp. how does that make people make better choices? >> michael, what's your response
to that? >> maybe we could get some of thos good thanksgiving back. bu the question is whether we need to fundamentally overhaul this law. the apes is yes. if you look at the effect on in many of america's outside the big cities. there are simpler ways to do this. why not just do this with simple liquidity coverage rate rather than have the government micromanage the affairs of individual businesses and impose enormous regulatory railroadments. >> the small braengs were so i'm not so sure that if you look at the klein. >> it doesn't even have any analytical data.
we can afford-to-have all these lawyers and keep us in compliance. >> but if you want to talk about what's driving compliance loss, let's look at ant oo laundering, know your customer religion eems. >> so what's a part of dodd-frank you think needs to be affectioned? >> in terms what i would get rid of, i'm not sure you want to throw anything out. you've seen modifications. i think the implementation of that rule has got i don't know to bizarre places and the regularors ought to rethink about that but that's one specific rule out of hundreds in dodd frank. if you could star begin. >> which porg would i change? i would change the vol kerr
rule. but frankly, if i want to address the real problem, the problem is not dodd franc, it's regulatory burden overall. i would change the ctr require men, i would change sars requirement. i've published a little bit about that. the choice act is mind lipless attacking dodd-franc without really thinking through the circumstances. >> there is truth to be told at that will are israel obviously there are politics involved here. dodd-frank was the result of a political process and there's a lot of vestedwell, you know, i
guess we'll see. the million dollar question is what happens in senate revolveding health care reform. >> let's go down that road. we've been talking about the washington agenda, the trump agenda, what goes passed and what doesn't. then you also have the freedom caucus saying they want to work through thing a recess because they want to get something on the table. how are you handicapping this? >> well, so i think a lot of what happens in the senate really depends on what happens with former director comey, what happens that is sucking out
condition can be -- and the problem is, as these scandals grow and grow, it it gets harder for democrats in the senate who have o to run in state woid so for those, which means you only have to do things with republicans, which means the senate starts to look like the house and we see a similar dynamic and that's not good news for significant passage of complexes pieces of legislation. >> i want to thank you for your time today. >> thank you. >> coming, who is krzysztof ray, the president's first.
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welcome back to "squawk box." let's bring in john malcolm, former deputy assistant attorney general under george bush administration. john, thank you for joaning us. your first impressions of the nominee. >> oh, i think chris ray is phenomenal. i've known him for a longtime we were both federal prosecutors there, though we just missed overlapping. i have known people who have worked with chris from defense attorneys to prosecutors, to federal agents who is long admired him and then i had the pleasure of working with him for three years at the department of justice and for about ten months
directly under how woo he have handled all of this? >> that's impossible to say. i certainly think that he will approach his job with integrity and dedication and win investigations in a nonpartisan way and i certainly don't think he'll do anything to interfere with the investigation that bob mule ser now conducting. >> we asked this yesterday of one of the guests. to the, tent that you know him as well as you do, is there any achilles heel that you'd identify? >> no, other than the fact that he's contributed to republican candidates, he represented chris christie in bridgegate. chris hey is a very principaled guy who had an outstanding professional career. there's no real reason why he shouldn't be appointed fbi
director. >> wait a minute, he's republican. >>. >> john what you do you think the relaying shupe shirt be kr the president has the constitutional authority, in fact a command, to make sure the laws of faithfully executed. i certainly don't think that the president should attempt to interfeern p fear with an investigation. it's a heavy-handed thing to do and it will undoubtedly fail. i mean, if the president pries to do that or there's even a hint me be iffing in will the last thing we need is j. edgar
hoover where political candidates are afraid to even get on himself bad side. he may have been more powerful than some presidents in his day. >> he was more powerful than some presidents. the fbi director has to be accountable to somebody, who serves in the executive branch as the president is credibly popular with the public. outread at least some of what we're going to see today. if you were a prosecutor and i know it's different given the rules and regulations around prosecuting a president in this instant but if to lk at -- no, not based on the facts as we have them now. at one point the pre iscying,
look, can mack mine go you need to announce i i'm not under investigation but if some of my satellite counterparts did, so, look, there's some smoke there. this will cause the president political problems but i certainly don't think he's in legal jeopardy. as you point out as president could not be invited anyway. >> do you think that because of the plain meeting and loretta lrch rahal no on that, do you think that gives comby i guess a
legitimate justification for deciding whether to put himself in a potion of whether -- you're asking if james comey thinks something is a crime when he's just the i go doing the investigating. and he's put himself in a place of where it normal and woor asking him like he he has some authority over it. >> john, i'm sorry to cut you off. we have some breaking news. the ecb is just out with its rate decision. >> yeah, leaving rates unchanged. the main benchmark rate, the refinancing rate is zero.
it also says it expects the ecb will remain at their present level for an extended period of time and well beyond the horizon of the net asset purchases. in the purchases will be made alongside of reinvestments, we know that. and that's about it. i'm trying to see if there's any other thing on language here. i'm not seeing too much of anything. i don't have the text right in front of me. let me tell you what the dilemma is here with draghi. first of all, the economy is improving. second of all, the fed is moving. so that's are two important elements here. third, inflation, the outlook is we believe will be said to be declining, as well as been sort of soft here as well. the euro is appreciating, that's more downward pressure on inflation and wages also are
subdued. so we're looking for ecb baby steps to normalcy. one, they may move down side risk to balance ultimately what draghi wants to do is basically keep policy in place and then sometime next year perhaps is the outlook here, possibly begin to taper its quantitative eases and then on to raising rates. tack a look here. the ten-year looks maybe a little pilt weaker than where it was before here. obviously you're going to print on the euro, which has been appreciating here. i'm seeing it here at 112.5, pretty much unchanged. back to you guys. >> steve, thank you. >> let go back to comey. the big news of the day.
>> comey, comey, comy. >> are you still with us? >> john, he was on himself way to j. ed car hoover, wasn't he? comey was on his way i think loretta lynch had recused herself in the matter because of her meeting with bill clinton and then it was look nchks prosecutors bring cases in court, not in the press. in both instances by saying what should happen and then by sort of painting her in a negative light had he was recommending
that she not be prosecuted, neither one of them is proper, in my opinion. >> appropriate or inappropriate? today you know comey is going to get grilled and asked specifically did you believe or do you believe that the president obstructed justice. do you think he should apes that question? >> i don't see that it worth he can say i felt pressured, this is what the president said. he can talk about his personal impressions but to o'pine about whether a crime was committed or about what was in donald trump's head, he's not a witness for that. >> and how should the public react or think about the disconnect between some of what we've heard in the written testimony today and some of the testimony he's provided prior on the issue of feeling pressured?
>> well, any inconsistency among he is statements will attack his credibility. he's certainly implied that no one sumted to upset his dax. >> we've heard so many times that it's the coverup, not the crime that we're not even talking about whether there's any conclusion. >> it's always the crime of upholstery. >> crime of the -- i've soon some of your sports colts look like upholstery from a couch, too. i would say those are a crime at times.
i want to talk to andrew just for a second here. i really think sometimes it's good. i feel like you're a defense attorney and you're a prosecuting attorney and would you like to cross-examine? >> and i cross-kpen. but i think it good because we both are interested in this. john, would you say it's about right? who about it sounded thebut every question was what a prosecutor would do, trying to get the jury to give the guilty herd. and our yes whether --.
if you were chris frfrm heritage found's, i have not unfollowed them. >> you cut the people you follow to 100. >> i keep trying to put them down. >> blinds are. >> now that the ecb decision is out of way, we're counting down -- i mean, that was one major market event. now there's two more, former fbi foob director james comey starting at 10:00, that hearing. and then the outcop of today's election in the u.k. stick with cnbc for complete coverage and markets reaction. we'll be right back. there's this. 'a bit of this. why not?
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a check on how currencies are reacting to today's top stories. the futures at this hour are looking up. a limb less up than they were a little while ago. we are back in just a bit. as we head to the break, tack a quick look at the found pound right there on this u.k. election day. "squawk" returns in a moment. >> you're out of order.
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where can make some headlines and that can move markets. unloch and it's definitely going to have more people watching the comey hearing and we're also watching the snap election in the u.k., voting is under way. and also there'sle will thing happening, ex-james comey. u.s. equity we saw the dow up, the nasdaq indicated by just almost 15 points. in europe eve seen most of the imagine market as little by higher. the dax the ftse down about.
>> f we also have experts from mark worner as prp ffrm and water grachlt put place after watergate to have any whiff. and the president asked comey to lift the cloud of the russian investigations. comey says in this written tom he had this meeting with the president and he try to sfn we have told those kbrnks he
receipt peatedly told me oo fwhchlt the president was still urging him mabb prchl nrchl. >> they did not have free trade for a number of reasons. mostly because it would cause a duty to correct should that chang. comey brrp he is legal team issuing a statement saying the pred is cleaned that mr. comey has finally dishon ed the hugs appropriation. the to move form with himself
frfrmgs. . it's good to see you. the thing we've been trying to understand all morning given the testimony -- the written testimony that we've seen is whether this constitutes obstruction or not. legally there's the issue -- that is right. the way i've been thinking about it so obviously there is a legal definition of obstruction of justice and lawyers will debate, a lot lawyers out already saying this is obstruction of justice. i don't think we can draw that firmly until this investigation is completed. it not just what he said to james comey and that he fired jimmy, when if what there a and
the members of the house and the senate, i think we're a long way from that. but what we're going to see today is someone who was the chief investigator into the cam and is now is a possible witness. >> thome is going to be asked repeated he thinks or thought that trump was trying to oub instru instruct, if sflnch i can't get in to what pr pcht tell you whether it obstruction for.
thome fmtd and will prm himself as an ektive decision. >> this is more of a political call being question. let say flfrm he believes the, tent was to obstruct justice. do you think politically johnson reto frrchlout anything, without republicans turning on the present. so stwrfrm what did the prz tell
you about how he was firing james comey who can be be frrngs sfrrks then i think you could see a shift. >> okay. i seed my time. >> thank you. >> it's now my witness and i've got judge judy -- no, judge becky. i hope we don't get calledfront of the judge and i hope i don't get contempt of point here. if mueller ppd because it could
have been husband tent really was at -- you know, leave this guy alone. he's a good guy instead this guy knows exactly what's going on with the big conspiracy working with the russians. >> it matters to showing the president's intent but it's not dispositive as the lawyer would say. kbl otherwise i'm obstructing justice. >> you don't have to have even succeeded in ob to be charged for it and there doesn't have to be an underlying crime that is charged for you to be charged with it. >> matt, you're a good witness. on the defense side -- i was worried about you being corrupt. you were eric holder's communications guy. you know exactly -- with all
this stuff, you had a pretty -- you had stuff to deal with over the time you were there, too. so i think you've given some pretty even keel answers so i'm not going to ask that you be removed as a witness. >> that's very kind of you. >>. >> reporter: union. >> we'll continue to watch this as it plays out live throughout day. you can watch this live on cnbc starting at 10 a.m. and time and i imagine many americans are going to be glued to the tv today. >> but none of us being -- i don't want to go to jail myself. and be in a freaking tent. >> but i don't think you can handle the truth.
>>. >> i'm telling al you have delighted f which is possible. the -- and there's a big meeting happening at the white house today dealing with infrastructure. and we're counting down to o mario draghi's news conference. it's part of that super thursday that we planned. >> must-see tv on thursday! >> someone planned this yesterday. >> my loyalty is to becky. >> we're going to bring you the highlights and talk market strategy at 8:30 a.m. eastern time.
and later, the polls are open and voters are going to go love s sta. >> the power of 100 of t the power of qqq. the thinking we put in, clients get out. power your client's portfolio at powershares.com/qqq. before investing, consider the fund's investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. call 800-983-0903 for the prospectus containing this information. read it carefully. distributed by invesco distributors inc.
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. welcome back, everybody. stocks to watch this morning, shares of alibaba surging in the free market. the company says it expects revenue growth of 45 to 49% in fiscal your 2018. it's very specific. they are holding an investor conference today. it posted 50% revenue growth in its latest fiscal year. the stock is up by about 14%. >> infrastructure week is in full swing. joining us now one of the participants scheduled to begin, scott pattison, director of the bipartisan organization of the
nation's governors. >> really, scott? there are biep things -- mean the way we do it people might difficult. but i think there's consensus that it a problem we need to go after, right? >> it really is. we see all kind of controversy like health care but infrastructure there's agreement that we read need to do something. as you said, what governors and state election level feel is we have to dlab rate with the government, finance and make infrastructure maintenance and building go forward. >> that might be one of the differences between democrats and republicans. republicans do think that maybe states have a bigger role. is that fair to say?
>> well, i think it's too early. there needs to be a lot more dialogue. right now you're hearing definitely proposals by the democrats in the congress for significant amounts of money. you're still seeing more dialogue with republicans and the administration. but i think we're at a point where it's early enough in the process that with the administration wanting to hear from states and localities, i think we are going to get so tom proposals. >> and they might pretend that, you know, the federal government -- state's rights, et cetera, but they don't say no to money very upon. >> the states have heal and the
other things that are really being talked about by governors and other state and local officials and that is whether it comes to infrastructure, have to have a lot of tools. you need more resource and money, you need to issue it slow pi ping. >> would there be a federal gas tax? you think you could get all the governors to say, yeah, let's do that? would they do it individually in their states? is that an additional arrow in the quiver, do you think? >> el washit's not so much a gas tax and i'll be honest, i don't know if i could get consensus among the governors in our association. but i will say that i think what it is is i think we can get consensus on how to put more resources into infrastructure. again, the key is a variety.
you're not going to solve this just by govern that and can is every state different? each state must be different. some of them they need bridges that are ready to fall. in new york we -- everybody says laguardia and jfk. and then i hear security and -- >> penn station. >> yeah. >> internet, power grid. infrastructure encompasses, every state has a different top three, don't they? >> yes. that's why we we keep talking about the importance of so many tools. you have states that have put a lot of money into their airports. you've seen that in a lot of places out west in contrast to
some of the east coast airports so they may not need to put money moo that but you might have water problems. but there are also places where, for example, on the east coast you have cities that for over hundreds of years and they have many more infrastructure. >> but they may have a track congestion problem and they may need to put money m into that. that's why it is different. and that's why i emphasize over again you can't do it with one type of proposal. you have to have all kinds of tools or, as you say, quivers to deal with this very serious problem. >> they are all booking for this. thanks. >> okay. >> have you -- where are you on blood lien? i'm way behind. >> i'm so behind i'm -- >> finally there's a trial. >> don't say anything. >> that's why i'm thinking about -- >> sshhh.
welcome back to "squawk box," everybody. we've been watching the futures this morning. yesterday the markets rallied a bit as we got the release of the comey testimony and got to see what was likely going to be in today's. you can see while we're waiting for all these major events still, for the u.k. polls to close and the comey testimony, things are relatively flat. the market seems to be watching and waying. dow up by 3, s&p up by 2, the nasdaq um by 15. >> lawmakers will soon have a new tool to take to constituents. the feature will help lawmakers better respond to the issues
that people are worried about. it's the latest civic engagement tool with facebook which has grappled with its place in the political landscape. >> "game of thrones sets a record for its new season. one scene alone has 73 fire burns. i remember when that one leader of the waldings was going to get burned. do you remember that? >> no, i only saw the first season of that. >> doesn't expect "game of thrones" to be awarded. they don't track setting people on fire. why they don't, i don't know. >> they track everything else, the longest finger nails in the
world. >> did you see that john shee-- sheerin and john -- i'm still on that song -- ♪ i'm in love with your body and now your bed sheets smell like ♪ i don't know. >> i saw him as a backup at a taylor swift concert. organizatio oh god. >> i'm in love with your bed sheets, who would say this? >> when we return, jobless claims about to hit the tape.
♪ ♪ ♪ i'm in love with your body ♪ last night you were in my room and now my bed sheets smell like you ♪ good morning. welcome back to "squawk box" here on cnbc live from the nasdaq market site in times square. the baseball, the l.a. dodgers, a whole new meaning, does it not, for -- >> yes, now that you've explained it. >> if you look at the story itself. but i didn't know that. maybe wilf will fill us in.
>> wilf is the only one that would call it bed sheets. >> we are just a few seconds away from jobless claims. let's check out the ten-year note. the yield has been sitting just below 2.2%, 2.195. we're going to get additional data. rick santelli is at the cme in chicago. take it away. >> all right. initial jobless claims, we were expecting 240, we had a handful more than expected at 245,000 from an upwardly revised 248 that ended at 245. in english that means we're down 10,000 from 245 from 255. both of these are hovering at rather low levels, trying to factor that into a profitable strategy, they've been trending at low levels for a while.
unemployment is trending closer and closer to 4%. the problem is growth is actually distancing itself a bit under 2% and of course we need to see what our most recent read will end up for q2 gdp. 219 on 10s, yields are up from tuesday's new low going back to november, a new low for 2017. that was around 214.5 rounded to 215. the bounce like the bounce in the dollar index and the steadying more of the equity markets. might give you the best read in the context of hours and hours of -- i can't talk politics but i can certainly look at markets. the pound isn't any the worse for wear. it's just a question of seeing how everything turns out in the end. becky, joe, back to you. >> stay right here. jim, what's your immediate take
on the data we're getting today combined with what we saw last friday from the jobs market, too, and that disappointing number? >> it's two out of the last three big job numbers have been disappointing. one significantly so. so this is just a little worse than expected. this doesn't take anything away from the bigger story and the bigger story is several months ago the stock market believed that things are getting better and there was probably going to be pro growth macro economic policy coming down the pipeline. as that has changed, the numbers have gotten slightly worse, we don't have the same confidence in the pro-growth policy but the market is looking at the fed and said you got our back on this, don't you? but the feds walked back a little bit. if the number start to deteriorate even worse, the feds will talk more dovish and then we'll be in involved in what we've been involved in for the
last ten years. >> do you think that explains why we're looking at a 2.2 on the ten-year yield? >> i think the biggest elephant in the room is continued ongoing purchases and ownership by central banks. that is the biggest channel, bigger than the english channel in terms of why rates are where they're at. all the other things jim said are true but they're by far not the driving force in any way. you want a steeper curve, talk to one of the central banks who sell little portfolios. they own like a third of the tradeable securities in the world. real quickly, let me finish. we're all talking about we don't like the fact that these policies aren't being enacted. clue here, the feds policies haven't worked for years but yet we always talk about escape velocity and we give him a lot
leash. when it comes to this guy in office, whether you look him or not, less than 200 days, game, set match. it's not what he'll try to do, it's what he won't try to do. he's monot going to go backward and one thing for sure, we're mott going to get less pro-growth policiesup. >> -- policies. >> two things. as far as the are yield curves flattening, the ten-year yield and the bunds has gone from .5 to -- >> on the year -- >> amen, brother. we've followed -- i'm trying to agree with you here.
it's a global we're awash in money so it has it to end up somewhere. i don't believe it's commentary on any big recession coming up. >> we did have a strategist earlier today that said with the big four banks around the world you'll see an increase, not a decrea decrease. we got to run but rick, jim, thank you both. it's great to see you. >> thank you. >> in the meantime we want to go across the pond where voting is under way in the u.k. will. >> hey, andrew. some polls have been open for section and a half hours, you see i'm at a polling station in central london.
>> labor. >> i don't like conservatives or the labor party. >> now, from the actual voting to something that is trending number five globally on twitter and that is the #dogs at polling stations. this is something that started a couple of years ago. it picked up significantly last year in terms of people dismayed and wanting a little bit of happiness, they started posting pictures of their dogs at polling stations and 8,000 were posted this morning. and i'm joined affectionately by rito. what was that you were saying? you wonder whether the poor campaign from theresa may has opened the labrador for jeremy
corbin to win. it's a very smart hound we have just here with around about eight hours to go, theresa may in the lead. a very small chance for jeremy corbin. guys? >> thank you. and more importantly thank your guest for joining us. >> rita will be with us all day. >> when we return, mario draghi holding a news conference after the central bank's latest big decision, which is we're not doing anything. and after the break we'll talk comey, comey, comey. check out the dollar as we head to break. it's all yours. wow! record time.
welcome back. comments from european central bank president mario draghi saying he does expect gdp to rise at a faster pace but he says we need a substantial amount of monetary accommodations. first he backed off on this issue of whether or not they're going to need rates at lower levels, and he did say that the risks now are balanced, they had been to the down side but he did leave in the prospect of whether or not they would do additional quantitative easing. not a lot of market reaction. this is pretty much what was expected from draghi but making has to very incremental steps towards normalcy and that may not happen until next year.
joe, back to you. >> let's get back to the broader markets. joining us now, david wu, phd, hence dr. wu. >> dr. whoo-hoo! >> it's not even friday, is it? that was -- this comey thing has got you -- >> he wants to come get me. >> whoo-hoo! >> people everywhere can't believe this. head of global rates and research -- it's giddy, giddy. it's the comey thing. and joining us from london, david zaun and senior vice president at franklin investments -- >> glad to be here. >> yeah. exactly. >> dr. wu, i think we're going to get at this point you saw what the ecb did, we're going to have another rate increase, are we not?
things are moving along. >> i thought it was very dovish. they made a small little concession to the hawks by saying we're not going to be cutting anymore. i think from our point of view, we said, yes, the economy is on fire in europe but inflation is very, very low, much below the expectation. i think they're going to go very slow. >> listening to steve, i thought that was the key thing, that they weren't going to cut any further. that's like a fed removing one of the -- from our point of view, our view is maybe in september they'll tell you that they're thinking about basically tapering. maybe in october they start to taper a little bit and probably cut their purchases from 60 to 40 at the end of this year. and it's going to be very, very, very gradual withdrawal of accommodation, which i think is
still bullish for equities. i don't think it's going to be that constructive for the euro. >> david, your take on that similar? >> well, actually i guess compared to the other david it's slightly different. i think we won't have rate hikes in europe for as long as draghi is actually in charge, which is through 2019. i think it's qe will go into next year and probably for quite some time. the ecb is an inflation targeter. they have to care if they're just below 2% and they're not there yet. so they will continue to be accommodative and i think they also have this institutional memory when triche hiked rates and it didn't go according to plan and they want to make sure they didn't waste this couple of
trillion in qe. >> dr. woo, we were talking with rick santelli who makes a good point at that the reason you're seeing rates for treasury as low as they are, around the globe there's so much money out there, it doesn't matter if the fed starts shrinking its balance sheet and they'll probably be ratcheting money up. will it keep all of us in this captive audience through 2018 and beyond? >> i think because the rates are so low, the dollar having collapsed since the last time i was on the show, it's concluded that u.s. tax reform is now officially dead. i think that is the main reason. i think the reason why the equity market has decoupled from the rates market by trading at all-time high is because the equity market somehow concluded that tax reform no longer matters. i think both of these is going
to basically prove to be correct. >> one of the markets is wrong. >> i think one of the markets is wrong. >> which is wrong. >> in this controversial view, i'm still hopeful, even though i'm disappointed, i'm hopeful. i think the only way to get it done is through the hard way now. think about this. last week i was in dallas speaking in front of 120 cfos. at the end of my presentation, i asked a question to the audience. i said how many of you think the u.s. economy will be in a recession without a tax reform? 95% of audience raised their hand. i think what people don't realize is every company i'm talking about tells me they're withholding major decisions on hiring and investment without clarity on tax reform. mile-per-hour view is that uncertainty is acting as a damper. they know they can't go into the mid term next year without tax
reform. >> the roundabout way of saying you think that stock market will -- they're not going to wait until after the summer recess. you say why is that? in september they'll have to basically come up with a budget until 2018 to avoid a shutdown on september 1st. why would the president want to throw tax reform in the middle of that? now i cannot rule this out but is it possible this white house is now thinking they want to lever a potential crunch to turn this into a high-stake game to basically strong arm the republicans to coalesce around a single tax reform plan? that is the kind of gamble -- >> your question talked often about wanting to do this
cleanly. >> the question is when. the day before yesterday the president met with the congressional leadership. they didn't say let's raise the debt ceiling now. it looks look it's going to get postponed into september. in september you might get a mini tart moment. to me a mini tart moment is the way you'll get tax reform done. the easy way is out and now it will have to get done the hard way. >> when you measure this, how much is happening in the united states versus how much is happening around the globe? >> i think we look on a globl basis, a lot of easy money coming out of japan and europe and that does keep yields lower. investors think where can i get some yields? i think it keeps yields artificially lower in the u.s.
given everything that's going on there. >> so if they're going to stay accommodative, that kind of explains why we can stay at 215, doesn't it? we may not have a horrible economy in the united states -- we shouldn't extrapolate that there's weakness here just because we're stuck down here at 215 because the rest of the world is not going higher. is that part of it? >> joe, maybe. but that's not what i think. i think the market is underpricing the volatility -- >> you said that for a while. >> other david, do you think that's part of it? it's different than it used to be. >> it's definitely a global phenomenon. european growth is doing really well. we cannot get inflation to kind of move upward in a sustained fashion. in that environment, they're going to continue to be accommodative. >> that's a sweet spot. they're doing better here, we're doing better there.
we're still at 215. we should be like goldielocks. nonfund payroll. without tax reform u.s. base economy is set to slow. the rebound everybody is looking for in the second quarter is going to be much small aresmall. >> so you're saying everything says they're doing in anticipation of this and they're doing nothing at all? >> it's lower. >> there's certainty you're not going to do any crappy stuff like we may have done previous in some administrations i won't mention. maybe we don't get the good things done but maybe you don't actually hurt things. anyway, davids and dr. woo --
>> whoo! >> i like the steely dan. i don't know about the whoo. >> like yahoo!! >> it's like liesman is here. he has more from mario draghi. >> yeah, he said we did not -- the ecb did not discuss an exit strategy or tapering. i'm with dr. woo on his idea this is dovish from the president. you have the euro weakening down to the 1.12. a little more hawkishness from draghi. the idea of a september taper announcement looks a little more remote now that we did not discuss tapering at this meeting. andrew? >> thank you, steve. always good to watch all of the news coming out of europe. when we return, jim cramer is going to be live from the new york stock exchange. we will spend some time with him.
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we'd like to talk business news, but it's tough today, jim, it being -- you know, we're cable news. i mean, it is comey. so i mean can you relate -- >> it's comey agedden. one those things underneath it. >> can we talk markets without at least having in the back of our minds? i guess. >> we have to go to china, because they're a stable government. if you get out of line there, they have capital punishment. if you sell alibaba obviously there could be some sort of repercussions. because that stock is up huge on the big guide up. moving a lot of stocks. >> really? >> it presents a rosy view to those who are willing to focus on stocks rather than comey gedden. >> we have the uk, although -- >> i saw wilf interview the whippet. that's a fascist component to london and then you have dr. woo
who made me feel like thermonuclear war is coming and if that's the case, buy amazon. >> if i say to you the l.a. dodgers that's just a baseball team to you? >> kershaw versus kofax. we have to find out. let's find out, okay? >> wainwright. what happened the other night? >> i don't know. where's the san diego chargers going to go? what is that about? >> that's a good point too. who would leave san diego? i mean, what -- >> mine, san diego i was trying to get the yesterday with that fellow -- i was thinking of catching a san diego game and going to him. they don't even want to go to l.a. the world is upside down. the china syndrome, go buy wee bow and ten cent. china syndrome turned out to be positive. >> don't leave, please. we're coming to you in 4 1/2 minutes. >> i'm not going anywhere. neither are the phillies. >> all right. as we head to break, a reminder.
don't miss full coverage -- see -- of ex-fbi director of james comey's testimony here on the senate at 10:00 a.m. eastern. stay tuned. we'll be right back. what's ha? we're facing 20 billion security events every day. ddos campaigns, ransomware, malware attacks... actually, we just handled all the priority threats. you did that? we did that. really. we analyzed millions of articles and reports. we can identify threats 50% faster. you can do that? we can do that. then do that. can we do that? we can do that.
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let's do this together. i want to show you the hotel i just booked for davos next year. this room in switzerland costs $306 per night. the catch -- it's a double bed suite in a field. that is open to the outdoors. you do get a drink on arrival though. and the services of the butler. usually a local farmer in rubber boots and an outhouse bathroom. three minute walk away. that would be cold at night. >> in january you're going to freeze. >> nearby alpine hut. this zero star hotel is a conceptual art project designed to allow guests to take in unobstructed views of the swiss landscape. that you would get. we stayed at a place that has walls, but that's -- that's basically the only -- you know, actually they added a kitchen
this year. added a kitsch then year. it's worth it, because we get to be with all the other davos men, right, andrew? >> we get to hang with becky. >> worry about the stockholm syndrome while we're there. we come back being socialists after being in europe. >> i don't know what say. watch comey all day. we'll talk about it tomorrow. "squawk on the street" begins right now. one of the most anticipated congressional hearings in decades takes place today. former fbi director comey testifies before the senate select committee on intelligence nearly one month to the day after being fired by the president. good thursday morning. welcome to "squawk on the street" i'm carl quintanilla with jim cramer and david faber. the yields have ticked higher. ey