Sep 6, 2017

Amazon to open stores inside of Kohl's

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata

AP Photo/Eric Risberg

Amazon is growing its physical footprint via a deal whereby it will open ten of its own 1,000-square-foot shops within Kohl's locations in the Chicago and Los Angeles areas. The Amazon stores-within-a-store will sell smart home products like Echo and Fire tablets, with customers able to schedule Amazon staffers for at-home visits.

Why it matters: This is the latest illustration of how America's largest e-commerce company isn't content to remain on our screens, following up on its recent purchase of grocer Whole Foods. And it comes at a time when Chinese peer Alibaba reportedly is planning to open its own physical shopping mall.

What we don't yet know: Any of the financial details of this arrangement. Kohl's shares climbed nearly 5% today, perhaps on the assumption that only a very generous arrangement could have convinced the department store operator to welcome such a powerful rival into its henhouse.

Go deeper

HBCUs are missing from the discussion on venture capital's diversity

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Venture capital is beginning a belated conversation about its dearth of black investors and support of black founders, but hasn't yet turned its attention to the trivial participation of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) as limited partners in funds.

Why it matters: This increases educational and economic inequality, as the vast majority of VC profits go to limited partners.

Unemployment rate falls to 13.3% in May

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 13.3% in May, with 2.5 million jobs gained, the government said on Friday.

Why it matters: The far better-than-expected numbers show a surprising improvement in the job market, which has been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic.

The difficulty of calculating the real unemployment rate

Data: U.S. Department of Labor; Note: Initial traditional state claims from the weeks of May 23 and 30, continuing traditional claims from May 23. Initial PUA claims from May 16, 23, and 30, continuing PUA and other programs from May 16; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The shocking May jobs report — with a decline in the unemployment rate to 13.3% and more than 2 million jobs added — destroyed expectations of a much worse economic picture.

Why it matters: Traditional economic reports have failed to keep up with the devastation of the coronavirus pandemic and have made it nearly impossible for researchers to determine the state of the U.S. labor market or the economy.