The Amazon logo is displayed at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York. Photo: Richard Drew / AP

U.S. stores have been closing at a faster rate in 2017 than at any time since the recession, an American phenomenon being dubbed "retail apocalypse." Though this has so-far been largely a worry for U.S. retailers, the Wall Street Journal reports that investors in Europe are worried that it is now spreading abroad.

Why it matters: As Amazon expands abroad and continues to win market share, expect accusations that this American juggernaut is stealing business from domestic firms and killing traditional retail.

The European retail sector had been buoyant until as recently as 2015, when the Stoxx Europe 600 retail sector had gained 8%, compared with a 9% decline in U.S. retail, largely because European brands are less reliant on struggling department-store sales, and because European firms resisted opening too many stores as their American counterparts did.

The turning tide: Amazon's international sales are up 16% so far this year, while Amazon has been responsible for one-third of all new retail sales in Britain and Germany, according to Morgan Stanley.

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Updated 51 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m. ET: 20,188,678 — Total deaths: 738,668 — Total recoveries: 12,452,126Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8 p.m. ET: 5,138,850 — Total deaths: 164,480 — Total recoveries: 1,714,960 — Total tests: 63,252,257Map.
  3. States: Georgia reports 137 coronavirus deaths, setting new daily record Florida reports another daily record for deaths.
  4. Health care: Trump administration buys 100 million doses of Moderna's coronavirus vaccine.
  5. Business: Moderna reveals it may not hold patent rights for vaccine.
  6. Sports: Big Ten scraps fall football season.

Voters cast ballots in Minnesota, Georgia, Connecticut, Wisconsin and Vermont

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Primary elections are being held on Tuesday in Minnesota, Georgia, Connecticut, Vermont and Wisconsin.

The big picture: Georgia and Wisconsin both struggled to hold primaries during the coronavirus pandemic, but are doing so again — testing their voting systems ahead of the general election. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) is facing a strong challenger as she fights for her political career. In Georgia, a Republican primary runoff pits a QAnon supporter against a hardline conservative.

3 hours ago - Health

Trump administration buys 100 million doses of Moderna's vaccine

A volunteer in Moderna's vaccine clinical trial receives a shot. Photo: Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The U.S. government has agreed to buy 100 million doses of Moderna's experimental coronavirus vaccine for $1.5 billion, or $15 per dose.

Why it matters: The Trump administration, through Operation Warp Speed, has now bought initial batches of vaccines from Moderna, GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi, Pfizer, Novavax, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca before knowing whether they are safe and effective. The federal government also appears to own some of the patent rights associated with Moderna's vaccine.