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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Photo: Leah Puttkammer / Getty Images

Three of the wealthiest and most powerful companies in the U.S. — Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase — are starting a new health care company. Details are thin, but the new entity will be “free from profit-making incentives” and focus on employer-based health benefits, the companies said in a statement.

Why it matters: The health care industry was already beside itself over the prospect that Amazon, on its own, might enter the pharmacy business. Amazon along with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan can bring to bear resources that few existing companies have the power to match.

Key quote: “The ballooning costs of healthcare act as a hungry tapeworm on the American economy. Our group does not come to this problem with answers. But we also do not accept it as inevitable,” Berkshire Hathaway chairman and CEO Warren Buffett said in the statement.

The details: There aren’t many, but the announcement says this new entity focuses on “technology solutions that will provide U.S. employees and their families with simplified, high-quality and transparent healthcare at a reasonable cost,” beginning with the companies’ own workers.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Economy & Business

The billionaire balloon

Data: World Inequality Report 2022; Chart: Axios Visuals

The super-rich are getting stupid rich: New data out today shows the share of global wealth held by the richest slice of humanity swelled by almost a full percentage point during the pandemic.

Driving the news: The top 0.01% of individuals now hold about 11% of the world's wealth, compared to just over 10% in 2020, according to the "World Inequality Report 2022," written by Lucas Chancel, Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
1 hour ago - Health

Omicron gives a shot to boosters

Expand chart
Data: CDC; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Vaccination rates have ticked higher since the discovery of the Omicron variant, CDC data shows.

By the numbers: The seven-day average for vaccinations in the U.S. reached about 1.8 million on Monday, up from an average of about 1.3 million a month ago.

Scoop: Over 200 papers quietly sue Big Tech

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Newspapers all over the country have been quietly filing antitrust lawsuits against Google and Facebook for the past year, alleging the two firms monopolized the digital ad market for revenue that would otherwise go to local news. 

Why it matters: What started as a small-town effort to take a stand against Big Tech has turned into a national movement, with over 200 newspapers involved across dozens of states.