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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS

iPad Hits Stores; U.S. Creates 162,000 Jobs in March

Aired April 2, 2010 - 14:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


RICHARD QUEST, HOST, QUEST MEANS BUSINESS: U.S. payrolls jump, but the numbers have an air of March madness about them.

A shiny new Apple hits the shops this weekend. What makes the iPad an "iWant"?

And bare faced cheek. Stewardesses put a rocket under Air Comet, plus. Also-

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(GUNFIRE)

QUEST: Ending the week with a bang. A movie stuntman shows us his "World at Work".

I'm Richard Quest. The end of the week, but I still mean business.

Good evening.

March was the best month for the U.S. job market in three years. There was a net gain of 162,000 jobs. Expectations were high. Analysts had been hoping perhaps even for a bigger number of new jobs to be created. Unemployment, though, still isn't coming down. That nationwide rate was unchanged at 9.7 percent. Nonetheless, the news is positive. This graph just shows how bad it has been in recent months, and the last 12 months, or so.

In January 2009, they've had 700,000 were lost. Now this shows exactly the position. January '09 was the worst point in many ways, but if you think that nearly 12, 13 million jobs have been lost throughout the whole of the recession, including the underemployed. The fact that we get to this part of the process where there is a gain of 162,000 jobs. And that, of course, is a turn around worth noting.

The U.S. jobs market has been very much the source of misery, but also perhaps the potential barometer of success, of this recession, which is why President Obama today welcomed this move.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And this month's increase of 162,000 jobs were the best news we've seen on the job front in more than two years.

(APPLAUSE)

At the same time it is important to emphasize, though we've come a long way, we've got a ways to go. We shouldn't underestimate the difficulties we face as a country, or the hardships that confront millions of our fellow citizens, some of your friends, some of your neighbors, some of your relatives, you know are still going through a tough time.

Eight million people have lost jobs over the past two years. That is a staggering sum. Economic statistics don't do justice to the pain and anxiety that results from unemployment.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

QUEST: News of jobs being created won't come as much of a surprise to citizens in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where unemployment is below the national average and one of the strongest sectors is construction, an industry that was hit hard by the recession. Poppy Harlow is in Harrisburg and joins me now live. Is there a fundamental difference between what they are doing there, in the rest of the country, are they just lucky?

(LAUGHTER)

POPPY HARLOW, CNN FININANCIAL CORRESPONDENT: I think it is a combination of both Richard, I mean you see the city skyline behind me. This is a city located n central Pennsylvania. You have people here that are more conservative than elsewhere. They didn't make big real estate bets, so they didn't have that housing boom, and then the housing bust.

But what is also interesting is it is the capital, so they have a number of government jobs here, along with education, healthcare, but in order to find out what is really going on here, you have to talk to the business owners, or the workers, Richard. So that is what we did. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is a good American town.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's been very stable. Very good for the construction industry.

DAVID BLACK, PRESIDENT, HARRISBURG AREA CHAMBER: We didn't have the boom, we didn't have a lot of speculation.

HARLOW (voice over): And that is why residents say, Pennsylvania's capital is fairing better than many cities when it comes to jobs. Especially in construction jobs, which are in short supply almost every where else.

BLACK: Our economy is based on government, it is based on health care, it is based on higher education, when you have a balanced economy that helps you when you hit a recessionary period.

HARLOW (On camera): All right. So, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, is clearly bucking the trend. Their construction industry a lot stronger than other cities across the country. Their unemployment rate a lot lower. But you have to talk to the people who run businesses here to figure out why that is. We're going to see Jessica Myers, she runs a construction management firm. She actually just hired employees. Let's find out why.

Thank you for having us. Can we go see some of the projects?

JESSICA MEYERS, FOUNDER, JEM CONSTRUCTION: Absolutely.

HARLOW: Because I know they are right around here, right?

MEYERS: Yes.

HARLOW: So this is like, what midway through renovation or so.

MEYERS: Yes, I would say we are probably two-thirds of the way through the project.

HARLOW: Jessica Meyers started her construction here six years ago, growing it to 18 full-time employees by expanding into property management, not just construction.

That has allowed her to bring on three recent hires.

MEYERS: I got over 100 resumes for one position.

HARLOW (voice over): Justin White got one of those positions, but only after being out of work for almost a year.

JUSTIN WHITE, NEW HIRE, JEM GROUP: It was definitely a humbling experience, being out of work. No health insurance.

HARLOW: You said the first time you were unemployed was-when?

WHITE: Last year. It was the first time ever, I mean, have had a job since I was 14 years old, never been without a job. I just didn't know how to react without one.

HARLOW: But Meyers hired him, just before the unemployment checks ran out.

Another one of her employees, Feron Clouser, moved to Harrisburg back in the `80s, for the job stability. And stayed for the same reason.

HARLOW (on camera): It is interesting, when you look at the monthly jobs report, every month, construction, one of the worst sectors. But not here?

FERON CLOUSER, SUPERINTENDENT, JEM GROUP: Yes, we are very lucky. And I just attribute that to the, you know, the local businesses, you know, the people who live here have a strong work ethic.

HARLOW (voice over): But it takes more than that, these days, to find work, even here.

WHITE: Without jobs like this, people like me are standing in the unemployment line.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HARLOW: And as you said, Richard, the unemployment rate here well, below the national average, it is about 8.4 percent, expected to drop from there. You heard Justin White, he is working on building the baseball field right over my shoulder. But Richard, the answer here is that you have got a lot of government jobs, a lot of education jobs, universities all around. And also health care jobs, major pharmaceutical companies and hospitals.

And, Richard, as you know, those were the three areas that have grown most during this recession. And that is why it is this town that is bucking the trend, Richard.

QUEST: All right. But, Poppy, the question of course is if the rest of the country is in such a dire position, or potentially dire positions does Harrisburg feel different? When you go down the street? When you look at the shops? You see the cars. You see what is in the shops?

HARLOW: Yes, it is a great question. They absolutely do. I just met a woman and her kids up here in the park. It is obviously Good Friday. A lot of people are off of work. And she saw our piece and I asked her, is Harrisburg different? And she said, yes, there is more employment here. Some of her friends are unemployed, right now, Richard. But there is a sense here that because of the government jobs in this capital town, there is more stability here than elsewhere. The question is, really, will it continue? They have had some pharmaceutical layoffs here as well. But there is a sense here, you feel a whole lot different than you do in a lot of the other towns I've been in across the country. At least when it comes to the job picture, Richard.

QUEST: Poppy Harlow, and we both clearly go the memo that we should wear matching red, on Good Friday.

HARLOW: Yes.

QUEST: Poppy, many thanks indeed.

Now, we need to turn to Todd Benjamin, who joins me now, a financial analyst.

TODD BENJAMIN, FINANCIAL ANALYST: You know, terrific report there from Poppy. And it is very interesting, what she says about Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; And then juxtaposing that with other parts of the country.

Let me just give you a couple anecdotes here, Richard. Because I was talking to somebody today in Texas. They were telling me about a lawyer they know, who was a very high-powered lawyer for Texas Instruments. Lost her job, very high paying job, and has sent out over 100 applications, for resumes, and has I think two or three interviews.

Another family, that I know very well, the woman was a lawyer in L.A., may be bad being a lawyer, nevertheless, is still out of work. The brother, who had low-skills, like a Justin White. He's been unemployed for more than a year. Still can't find a job.

QUEST: So, 162,000, 163,000 new jobs were created in the U.S. Only a small part of those were from the Census scheme, the government creation scheme, if you like, or the government payroll. So, most economists believe that this was an important month.

BENJAMIN: Oh, absolutely. It is a very important month. It shows that, you know, the economy is improving. And when you, again, put it against that back drop that you showed, in January of 2008, where we lost almost 800,000 jobs. You know, any job creation is welcomed.

Now, you know, will the good job creation continue? It probably will in the first half of the year. You know, manufacturing certainly improving. You mentioned the temporary workers, right? 48,000 temporary workers, the government is going to hire 1.1 million temporary workers for the census they do every 10 years, in the first half of the year.

After that is all over, then you are not going to have that same sort of support. And the question is whether or not the private sector will be generating enough jobs to continue the good news.

QUEST: So, so-I hear your caution and I hear your warning. But what I don't quite get yet is should we be concerned?

BENJAMIN: I think you should be concerned anytime when your unemployment is still a 9.7 percent. Even by year end, you know, economists think it will be around 9.5 percent, in part, because no more people will be looking for jobs, as they think the prospects have become better. But you have to remember you still have a lot of long-term unemployed; 44 percent of those unemployed have been unemployed for 27 weeks or longer. That is very painful for anybody having to go through that process. There are people also who are working part time, who rather work full-time. And then also there is the political headache for President Obama.

QUEST: Right, now let's talk about that.

BENJAMIN: Yes.

QUEST: The midterms-he had a good, he's a good-

BENJAMIN: He's had a good few weeks.

QUEST: He's had a good few weeks.

BENJAMIN: Absolutely.

QUEST: So, things are looking rosier, if not rosy?

BENJAMIN: Well, I think things are looking rosier. You still have to know, though, come November, when they have this midterm elections, you know the economy is still going to be front and center. And even if unemployment is slightly improving then, and more jobs are being created, you know, he hasn't had very good marks for what he's done on the economy.

QUEST: Right.

BENJAMIN: This is a weakness for him. And it has hurt his approval ratings so, he can't hope but that the jobs situation improves as soon as possible.

QUEST: And you rightly point out to me, Todd, that our Dow, which has now just left the screen, must have been last night's close.

BENJAMIN: Yes, exactly. It was closed today for Good Friday.

QUEST: Closed today.

BENJAMIN: But obviously the futures, on the back of this report, were pointing up slightly. We'll see if that holds come Monday.

QUEST: All right. Many thanks. Have a good weekend.

BENJAMIN: Great seeing you, Richard.

QUEST: And good holiday, long weekend.

BENJAMIN: Thank you so much.

QUEST: Right, now, you are up to date with the economic news. Interestingly, of course, that economic news coming out, even though it is a holiday in the United States.

The news headlines now. Max Foster is doing duty for us at the CNN London News Desk.

(NEWSBREAK)

QUEST: It is nearly the weekend in large parts of Europe. If you haven't made plans yet, maybe a trip to the beach or a bit of gardening. You might even care to go-well, stand in line, outside a shop waiting for a new computer to go on sale. What could be worth the wait? We'll show you in a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Are they mad? Apple fans have been queuing outside Apple stores across the United States for several hours. It is only Friday and the iPad doesn't even go on sale until tomorrow. Ever since Steve Jobs officially announced the existence of this iPad, Apple has given us three months to get excited and to save around $500, they are charging for the basic version.

Now, if you are an Apple Mac user, then you are messianic about what might be about to happen. If, of course, you are PC, or whatever, you maybe less excited about it. CNN's Richard Roth is in New York.

Richard, I won't invite you to show us your colors and declare which- whether you are a Mac-er or a PC-er. But you have got people there who can't wait?

RICHARD ROTH, CNN SR. U.N. CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and the following is not a commercial report. We are standing here in front of one of the main Apple stores in Manhattan.

Did you know, Richard, that they have done a study that this Apple store is the fifth most photographed landmark in New York, even more than the Statue of Liberty. There are many crowds and people behind me. Some of them are for FAO Schwarz, the children's store, and some are just browsing and going in and out of the store. There is not the big pandemonium that you saw with the iPhone. This wait is for the iPad.

So, this line, rather skimpy by lines standards in New York, though, it is expected to grow. The product, the iPad, the touch computer goes on sale 9:00 a.m. local time in New York. Here is the Bravo family from Brooklyn, New York, that has been dining on pizza.

When did you get here?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 11:30 last night.

ROTH: So, how do you know that you are the line, because it is a big store and a lot of sidewalks?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, we made sure. We spoke to the manager and then head of security also came out and spoke with us, too. So, we're at the front.

ROTH: Why are you willing to stay-and sleep here-for two nights? Did you really sleep here last night?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, we did.

ROTH: Why?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is for my sister. So she wasn't able to order it online, so we're here for her.

ROTH: But how many-do you really like the products, the gadgets? I mean, you are doing it just for your sister? Do you use computers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm a PC person, but she really wants it and has to have it-so, sorry.

ROTH: So, the pizza, that is what is keeping you going?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

ROTH: OK, we have apparently a New York Yankee fan here. Why are you on the line and how long have you been waiting?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We got here about 5 o'clock this morning. And we're in line because I want the iPad to see if I can use it for work and business and she wants the iPad for fun.

ROTH: Several European tourists said that it was too big, and it was not needed. They weren't basing on using the product. What do you know about it? And what do you want to use that you haven't been able to use on the 400 other technology devices that are out there?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, I can't speak for my daughter and the game playing on it, but I can speak, from my standpoint, from the business perspective, I'm looking to read on it. I'm looking to read magazines and books that come in color. Then I can use the accelerometer for it. Because it is going to be a lot more portable for me.

ROTH: OK, you can translate that for me later. By the way, this woman spilled her bagel, French fries and an actual apple, I am not making this up, Richard. This apple fell out of her bag, now that soda is leaking.

Here is your apple back, by the way, Ma'am.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.

ROTH: Thank you. She's here on line representing, affiliated with the product, so we are not going to double up you might say. We're walking back here. This line believe me will grow and there are some professional line sitters and standers, that are famous for trying to get on camera at these types of events. All this for the iPad, new from Apple. Have you heard? Richard, back to you.

QUEST: It was very interesting there, Richard, that is real dedication, Richard. The woman who is a PC user and is prepared to stay out for two nights, to get one for her sister. Would you do that?

ROTH: Well, I would, but I don't have sister.

QUEST: Excellent. Richard Roth, many thanks, indeed.

(LAUGHTER)

Richard Roth, who I suspect has many more hours of duty to do, standing in-with that line.

In a moment, one day you are crashing a bike, the next you are laying face down in a river. And before you know it, you are getting shot at.

(GUNFIRE)

It is all in a day's work for a stuntman. We are going to have a "World At Work"-that looks painful, in a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: I never fancied a life in film. It is not exactly the cakewalk standing in for Colin Firth. We now take a walk on the wild side. We have been to Pinewood Studios. Now if one of the beauties of this segment on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS is that over the course of the month you really do get to understand some of the extraordinary things that people do.

For instance, how would you like to be a movie stunt man in your "World At Work"?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROY TAYLOR, PROFESSIONAL STUNTMAN: Stuntmen are the unsung heroes of the movie business. And that's not a bad thing, I don't think.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Putting it in there, make sure it's home, then you're ready to fire.

TAYLOR: All right.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'll leave it on full auto.

TAYLOR: For years and years to come these films will be watched again and again, and even I suppose, when I'm dead and gone. Aye, even my kids and my grandkids will be watching the film and they can say, you know, there that's me great, great granddad, or whatever, and you'll still be entertaining them. It's a good feeling.

(UNINTELLIGIBLE) I did force in training, this was the first movie. I doubling Colin Firth, I get-the girl's is throwing Colin Firth's character out the window. So, I had to jump out the window, which was 28 feet up, and I was landing in three feet of water.

(BEGIN MOVIE CLIP)

COLIN FIRTH, ACTOR: You wouldn't know the way to the hockey pitch would you?

Whoa!!

(SPLASH)

(END MOVIE CLIP)

TAYLOR: If I landed in feet first, I probably wouldn't have been walking again. If I landed in head first, I probably-may not have been come out of there at all, to be honest.

So, at the moment we are putting on some squibs, squib hits, which you'll be able to explain better than I will, but basically, there are blood packs in here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He'll basically have a single hit button and he'll be able to control the hits. As he hears the shots of the gun, he'll be able to hit this, and then obviously explode the detonator on the bags on the front of his chest. And it will part the shirt, and we'll see the bullet hit.

TAYLOR: You need a high physical fitness. You need a hell of a lot of skills to be a professional stuntman over in England, that's for sure. You need to be professional in like at least six different sports, like martial arts, horse riding, trampolining (sic), rock climbing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On action, they'll open the doors, get out, go through-

TAYLOR: The scene we're going to do today is we're going to have- there is going to be this character that is up on top of this building and he's gotten on top of this whole city hall type building and he's going to- he's got a gun, an automatic weapon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I may need to move the box switch right further out.

TAYLOR: Can you move that about-?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Three foot?

TAYLOR: Yes, about that.

Police are going to come in, they are going to ask to throw out his weapon. He doesn't, he gets shot twice, in the chest, and then he'll fall to his death, obviously, hitting the floor. So that is what we're going, hopefully, achieve today.

(SIRENS)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Halt, police!

(GUNFIRE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You all right, Roy?

TAYLOR: There are a lot of times where you do end up with-either broken bones, or bruises, sprains, aches. I'm only 40 years old and to be honest, when I get out of bed in the morning, I feel like a 60 year old. I'm creaking and I'm aching.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You all right?

TAYLOR: I think sometimes a lot of other people on the set will look at the stuntmen and go, what are they doing? They're not even doing anything? But then when we do it, it hurts.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey! Well, done!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good job.

TAYLOR: That's good. Did they cut-

(CROSS TALK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The rigging, too?

TAYLOR: Is that all right for you?

I'm standing up, talking to you, so I think it has gone pretty good.

I've got a adrenaline going through me at the moment. So it is kind of a nice feeling. So, you have to forgive me if I sort of go a bit, sort of in and out. But yeah, it was good.

(GUNFIRE)

TAYLOR: There are only 208 of us in the U.K., that are professional and do this job. And to be part of that elite group, I'm really proud. I get to meet some great people, like some of the best actors in the world, which is great.

I get to die, and still go home at the end of the day, as well. So, it is kind of-it's a really good feeling because I've always got a different story to tell when I get home.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

QUEST: Wow! That is quite some way to earn your money. And we want to know how you earn and spend your cash. Send us pictures and stories that make up your "World At Work". You can find us on Facebook, @Questmeansbusiness. E-mail, Quest@CNN.com, and of course the Twitter address, as always, @RichardQuest.

No one else does it quite like we do. The U.S. economy is creating jobs, can the White House continue that hope? Because they are not opening the champagne yet in just a moment we talk to the chairman of one of the biggest U.S. banks and his thoughts on the way ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, this is CNN.

We have looked at the evidence for a jobs rebound in the United States and today the optimists got decent ammunition, with that latest jobs report showing more than 160,000 new jobs created in the U.S.

Some people still believe, and talk of, the potential for a double dip recession. That would happen later on in the year, as stimulus is withdrawn. CNN's John Defterios spoke to Jacob Frenkel, the chairman of JP Morgan Chase, International, and asked him if we would see growth return to the rates we had before the great recession.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JACOB FRENKEL, CHAIRMAN, JPMORGAN CHASE INTERNATIONAL: Well, I believe that the pre-crisis growth as not sustainable to begin with. It was fueled by non-sustainable processes like excessive leverage. So we will never see this, hopefully.

By the same token, I believe that the likelihood for a double dip is very low.

JOHN DEFTERIOS, HOST, "MARKETPLACE MIDDLE EAST": Mr. Bernanke was saying before Congress recently that accommodative monetary policy is here to stay. And he didn't define when the Federal Reserve is going to be more aggressive with interest rates.

What are you looking at in terms of a time line yourself?

FRENKEL: Well, the issue is not the calendar in terms of time, but rather the fate (ph) of the recovery. Once the authorities, in this case, the Federal Reserve, recognizes that the recovery is something more robust, I'm sure they will withdraw their excessive stimulus, which was the -- needed beforehand, but we should really be careful not to leave it in the system for too long, because, at some stage, when the recovery takes hold, the dangers of inflation may come back to us.

So it's a very, very delicate balance to be stricken and it's all against the background of a huge budget deficit and a huge challenge for the fiscal authorities.

DEFTERIOS: How long are we looking at here, though, this accommodation, if I can put it that way, another six months is about right, from what you can see now in the pipeline?

FRENKEL: I will not rule it out. But as I say, the fiscal challenge -- large budget deficits, large public debt, crisis in the sovereign debt market -- this will take years to address. And I'm sure that we hope that the recovery will take hold beforehand so that it will actually support the way in which the fiscal challenge is being addressed.

DEFTERIOS: As a result of this downturn that we saw in America and Europe, there's been rumblings in Congress to really point to China and say let's strengthen the renminbi to correct the imbalance we have today.

Is this the right methodology, in your view, or is this a dangerous slope into a trade war?

FRENKEL: It's a very slippery slope. And I hope that the Congress is not going into the direction of announcing that China is a manipulator and everything of that type. The real issue is to recognize two facts. First, the U.S. has a very high rate of unemployment, around 10 percent. And this is a breeding ground for short-term policy temptations.

DEFTERIOS: Sure.

FRENKEL: We should resist it.

Second, China is not a threat. China is an opportunity. China is the place where much of the economic activity takes place.

DEFTERIOS: Because this is a -- a source of global demand, is what you're saying, then, for imports?

FRENKEL: Of course. And if you look at the structure of U.S. exports, you see that over the past several years, the percentage of U.S. exports that goes to China has been on the rise more than into any other place.

So I would say that's the destination of our -- of the U.S. product. But by the same token, I think that the focus on the exchange rate in public debate is misplaced. It is not to say that the Chinese currency does not need to appreciate. In fact, I'm sure it will appreciate. But it will appreciate within the context of a much broader reform in China.

(END VIDEO TAPE)

(END VIDEO TAPE)

QUEST: That's Jacob Frenkel of JPMorgan Chase talking to John Defterios in Italy.

Now, in the field of industrial relations, there are pay disputes and then there are naked pay disputes. Not too many of those, admittedly. We managed to find one. We lay bare the facts of the matter in just a moment.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

QUEST: Welcome back.

From rip-off to strip-off, flight attendants at an airline that went bust in late last year say that for months before the airline stopped flying, they were working without pay, nine months, in fact. Now, they're protesting and they're doing so by taking off their clothes.

There are nine hostesses who have posed nude for a calendar from the jet set theme. The airline involved was called Air Comet. It stopped flying in December.

Now, the hostesses or the flight attendants say they haven't been paid since the middle of last year and the reason they are doing this, besides maybe to cheer up the day, is to draw attention to their plight. They don't necessarily believe they're going to get any money back, but they don't want to draw attention to more than just -- well, you get the idea.

We're on thin ice here. We had to talk to Irene Rodriguez.

She is the lady who appears as Miss September and she explained to me what it was all about, why they took their clothes off and what they hope to get out of it.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

IRENE RODRIGUEZ, AIR COMET FLIGHT ATTENDANT: The problem is not that we haven't been paid for more than nine months, the problem is that we lost our jobs. And so we probably, we don't have a chance to work as air hostesses again, because this is a tough (INAUDIBLE) here in Spain. If you want to work as an air hostess, you have to be younger than 30 years old.

QUEST: Right. And so what does -- what does this calendar do?

You're not going to get -- I don't want to be cruel, but the money isn't there, because the company has gone bankrupt. So you're not going to get the money.

What did you achieve by this calendar, do you think?

RODRIGUEZ: OK. I want to -- yes, I want to make clear this point, because we don't want to earn any cash off this. We just want to make impact of the -- in the media and, you know, and also to solve this problem, because I -- we realize that, from the government and from any, you know, boss and everything, we don't have any solution for this, you know?

So we just want to make an impact on -- in -- on the media.

QUEST: Well, you've certainly done that. Taking your clothes off on the planes or being photographed around the planes has certainly had an impact.

Are you pleased with that impact?

RODRIGUEZ: Yes, we're really satisfied for -- for that impact. But the thing is that our last -- our final target is to find a solution about our situation, because there are much more than 670 families right now that we cannot pay the mortgages, the rents, the bills. And, you know, you can imagine our situation right now, because we haven't been paid for more -- more than nine months, you know...

QUEST: Yes, but you see...

RODRIGUEZ: -- and, also...

QUEST: But you haven't...

RODRIGUEZ: (INAUDIBLE).

QUEST: You haven't been paid for nine months because the airline...

RODRIGUEZ: Yes.

QUEST: -- because the airline has gone out of business. The airline is not (INAUDIBLE)...

RODRIGUEZ: No, no, no, no. But listen, in -- the airline going out of business last December, that we haven't been paid our salaries since July 2009.

QUEST: Right.

And what did your family say about you taking your clothes off?

RODRIGUEZ: Now, I think you -- probably it's not the best way that we -- we thought that is the -- you know, the most effective one. Nobody can deny this fact. So my -- my family is -- is agreed with that because I can be in my home doing anything. We have to do something for our rights. We are not asking for anything. Just we want just to -- our -- our salaries and also we want a job, for sure.

QUEST: Would you work for Michael O'Leary and would you work for Ryanair?

RODRIGUEZ: Well, you know, I've been -- yes, if I want to work with Ryanair...

QUEST: Yes.

RODRIGUEZ: Well, yes, it would be good. I -- I really want to work in -- in any place. I don't know. The thing is, also, I don't know, I want like a -- a work, like to work in an -- you know, as her hostess for my life.

QUEST: Right.

RODRIGUEZ: I don't want to work in one place just for one year or two years, like, you know, we are in Spain and after that I have to look for something else.

(END VIDEO TAPE)

QUEST: Now, my question, of course, about working for Ryanair, you'll be aware that Ryanair has its own calendar of lovely flight attendants that they put out every year. So, Michael, if you're watching, there's somebody who'd like to work for you.

Guillermo is at the World Weather Center.

And I'm just wondering what a weather forecaster's calendar might look like.

Perhaps a bit wild around the edges. I don't know. Listen, it -- it's far too dangerous to go down this road. Let's just leave it right there.

GUILLERMO ARDUINO, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I'm not -- I'm not looking for another job, that's for sure.

QUEST: Yes.

ARDUINO: Well, let me tell you one thing, I think that you should come to the mother ship, like you called it some years ago, to CNN Center, because the weather here is so good, but it's so bad where you are. And it's -- on Saturday, I think. You're going to see a lot of rain.

Then Monday, Tuesday, maybe things get a little better. What we have is system after system coming through -- the April showers that we were talking about. And we are going to see some more rain, especially on Saturday, intense. Sunday there will be rain again. It's a low pressure center that we have here.

Of course, we have another one coming right after. And -- but it's going to clear out a little bit on Monday. Remember that. So, as I said, through Monday, this is when you are going to get, I think, a couple of days with OK conditions. I think that this got caught with my microphone in the back.

OK. So, you see it here sandwiched in between the two systems. One goes away, the other one is going to move northward. So it's going to allow the nice conditions on Monday over there.

France with some bad weather. The Mediterranean Sea and the south looking fine. And I have some observations. In Leeds, we have rain as we speak.

In Germany, here in Dusseldorf; Cardiff here in Wales with rain; and Brussels, also, over here in the Low Countries. Birmingham in England with some rain.

Spain, in the south, is looking OK; and, also, the temperatures are not that bad. But add the wind, in this case, and you will see it. Saturday, 10 degrees for London; 12 in Paris; 21 in Athens.

And this is it -- above average. I don't like it really warm. Like today, it's going to be 25, 26 degrees. It's 2:42 p.m. right now. So I like it a little bit cooler. But I can't complain, because it is very dry, sunny, nice. Flowers are blooming. I mean it's gorgeous here in -- in this part of the state. And I'm not talking about this because of me. I want you to know, international viewer, that if you come to the States in the next days, especially for the weekend, it is going to be a nice welcome on the Midwest and Eastern Seaboard.

The problem is here. In B.C. British Columbia, in Canada, in the Northwest and Northern California, where we have some bad weather and some cool conditions, some rain showers. Twelve for Saturday in San Fran. It's a wonderful city, anyway, no doubt about that. Twenty-six in Atlanta. So here it's perfect.

Montreal, 27. And 23 -- no, 23 in Montreal.

So we're through right now. So that is the forecast. I hope -- I hope you have a great weekend despite the rain -- Richard.

QUEST: Thank you, Guillermo.

There's nothing worse than the smug enjoying good weather.

See you next week.

ARDUINO: Yes.

QUEST: And I've got a cold.

And that's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for tonight.

I'm Richard Quest.

Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead, I hope it's profitable.

"MARKETPLACE MIDDLE EAST" is next.

I'll see you next week.

END