March 22, 2023

Media Decoder: CNBC Buys ‘Nightly Business Report’ From Atalaya

WPBT sold “N.B.R.” to Mykalai Kontilai in 2010. Atalaya Capital Management took over in 2011.Michael Appleton for The New York Times WPBT sold “N.B.R.” to Mykalai Kontilai in 2010. Atalaya Capital Management took over in 2011.

“Nightly Business Report,” the pioneer public television series that has struggled in recent years, is getting a new, deep-pocketed commercial owner, the 24-hour business cable channel CNBC, a unit of Comcast’s NBCUniversal.

CNBC announced on Thursday that it would buy the rights to the show, available in 96 percent of television homes in the United States, from the investment firm Atalaya Capital Management for an undisclosed price. CNBC will begin producing “Nightly Business Report” from its New Jersey headquarters on March 4. The program now originates in Miami, with bureaus in New York and Washington.

The format will remain the same. Tyler Mathisen of CNBC will anchor with Susie Gharib, the current co-anchor, who is under contract through 2013. The co-anchor Tom Hudson and the remaining staff of 18 will leave.

In a telephone interview, Rick Schneider, president of the Miami public station WPBT, where the show is based, called the new owners “a good thing for the program and for the public television system.” Not only will the show survive, but “it will likely be enhanced,” he said. “ ‘N.B.R.’ has always lacked having a major news-gathering organization behind it.”

The purchase is the show’s third change of hands in less than three years. In August 2010, Mykalai Kontilai, an entrepreneur and former mixed martial arts manager, bought it from WPBT, which founded the show in 1979 before the era of 24-hour cable business news. Atalaya Capital Management, Mr. Kontilai’s backer, took over in November 2011, after few of Mr. Kontilai’s ambitious expansion plans were achieved.

In a telephone interview, Nikhil Deogun, CNBC’s senior vice president and editor in chief for business news, said the show’s audience “has very little duplication, as best we can tell” with the CNBC audience. He said it would provide additional opportunities for CNBC journalists.

PBS withdrew its financial support of “Nightly Business Report” in 2011 and stopped distributing it. American Public Television now distributes the show to 180 stations and will continue to do so.

Ratings have drifted lower and the show’s sole financial underwriter, Franklin Templeton Investments, withdrew in August, leading to layoffs and the closing of the Chicago bureau.

In a memorandum to the staff on Thursday, Mr. Schneider wrote, “It has been clear for months, even years, that the existing business model for ‘N.B.R.’ was unsustainable as national production underwriting dried up.”

Mr. Deogun said CNBC would seek new underwriters, adding that NBCUniversal “has a great sales team.”

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DealBook: U.S. Markets to Be Closed on Tuesday

The New York Stock Exchange was closed on Monday ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Sandy.Michael Appleton for The New York TimesThe New York Stock Exchange was closed on Monday ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Sandy.

2:32 p.m. | Updated

Stock markets in the United States will be closed again on Tuesday for a second day without trading as Hurricane Sandy roared closer to the New York area.

The New York Stock Exchange, the Nasdaq stock market and BATS Global Markets said in separate statements that they have agreed to close, after consulting with other exchanges and clients. The N.Y.S.E. added that it planned to operate on Wednesday, pending developments in weather conditions.

The decision came as little surprise, with market operators already hinting that they would stay closed as the storm’s impact intensified. And the Securities Industry and Financial Market Association, an industry trade group, recommended that United States bond markets stay closed on Tuesday as well.

The two-day stoppage is the first weather-related closure of the American stock markets since Hurricane Gloria in 1985. And it is the first unscheduled trading stoppage since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Representatives for the exchanges emphasized that the safety of their employees was paramount, relying on skeleton crews to run critical operations. And a slew of Wall Street firms, some of whose offices are based in evacuated areas of Manhattan, have asked employees to continue working remotely.

Hurricane Sandy Multimedia

A continued stoppage in trading is expected to have some costs for exchanges like the N.Y.S.E. and the Nasdaq stock market. Richard Repetto, an analyst at Sandler O’Neill Partners, estimated that stock and option exchanges would lose about $1 million in transaction fees for every day that they are closed.

That loss of revenue would likely have little impact on those companies’ earnings, he added, though Mr. Repetto added that he did not factor in lost revenue from exchanges’ other businesses.

Other Wall Street firms made contingency plans as well. Goldman Sachs advised employees in an internal memorandum to stay home on Tuesday, and that its offices at 200 West St. and 30 Hudson St. would be closed. The firm is relying on operations in London, Salt Lake City and elsewhere to keep its businesses running.

Here’s the latest memo from Goldman’s chief administrative officer, Jeffrey Schroeder:

October 29, 2012
Hurricane Sandy – Business Operations on Tuesday, October 30
Hurricane Sandy is expected to intensify this evening. Financial markets will be closed on Tuesday and transportation will remain suspended indefinitely in New York City and other locations affected by the storm. As a result, 200 West and 30 Hudson will be closed tomorrow.

The firm’s Business Continuity Plans will remain active throughout Tuesday, leveraging our teams in London, Salt Lake City and other offices around the world.

Unless otherwise instructed by divisional management, you should plan to stay at home tomorrow. The safety and well-being of our people remains our highest priority. We ask you to be mindful of communications from municipal and state authorities, your divisional leadership and your managers.

We will provide further updates as necessary and request that you pay special attention to messages from the Office of Global Security (OGS). Please also visit the OGS site for more information on Hurricane Preparedness.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Jeffrey W. Schroeder

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DealBook: Standard Chartered Signs Pact With New York Regulator

Benjamin M. Lawsky, head of the state's Department of Financial Services, at his office in Manhattan in January.Michael Appleton for The New York TimesBenjamin M. Lawsky, head of the state’s Department of Financial Services, at his office in Manhattan in January.

2:46 p.m. | Updated

Standard Chartered, the British bank accused of illegally funneling money for Iranian banks and corporations, signed a settlement on Friday with New York State’s top banking regulator.

Bank executives agreed last month to pay $340 million to settle claims that it moved hundreds of billions of dollars in tainted money and lied to regulators. Until Friday, though, the final details were not hashed out.

The finalized agreement allows the 150-year-old bank to move beyond its clash with Benjamin M. Lawsky and the agency he heads, the 10-month-old New York Department of Financial Services. The state regulator accused Standard Chartered in August of scheming for nearly a decade with Iran to hide from regulators 60,000 transactions worth $250 billion.

Federal authorities, including the Manhattan district attorney and the Justice Department, have their own investigations into Standard Chartered’s activities. The bank is expected to resolve any criminal allegations with the Manhattan district attorney’s office by next week, according to law enforcement officials.

Standard Chartered had maintained that only $14 million of the $250 billion in transactions violated federal regulations. In a regulatory filing shortly after the settlement was announced, the bank said that “a formal agreement containing the detailed terms of the settlement is expected to be concluded shortly.” In the agreement, the bank acknowledged the transactions under scrutiny were roughly $250 billion, but did not admit or deny wrongdoing.

The settlement that was concluded on Friday will be the final act in an international drama that pitted Mr. Lawsky against federal authorities who believed he was overreaching and British authorities who accused the regulator of hurting the reputation of their banks.

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