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AP

Google is creating a separate unit for buying ads within its shopping service, Bloomberg reports. Google Shopping will remain a part of Google, but it will operate independently and sell ads based off of its own revenues. It will be treated in Europe the same way Google treats its "Other Bets" businesses all housed under Alphabet Inc., like Verily, Nest and Waymo.

Why it matters The move comes months after European antitrust officials slapped Google with a massive $2.7 billion fine for abusing its market dominance as a search engine to steer customers to its own Google Shopping platform. By separating the shopping unit, Google can avoid paying a penalty of up to 5% of its daily revenue while it appeals the decision.

In response to the fine, Google said it thinks the EU undervalues Google's shopping and search experience for consumers, arguing that its success doesn't mean it favors itself — "it's the result of hard work and constant innovation."

The bigger picture: As Axios has previously reported, the bigger concern for Google is that the EU regulators' aggressive measures will nudge U.S. counterparts to take a closer look at whether the dominant tech firms use their growing troves of data and increasingly sophisticated algorithms to skew competition more broadly. Smaller firms like Yelp and have spent several years lobbying the EU to act, as U.S. regulators have been reluctant to take on tech giants — though pressure is growing for them to take a more critical look.

Go deeper

First look: Mayors press Biden on immigration

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A coalition of nearly 200 mayors and county executives is challenging Joe Biden and the incoming Congress to adopt a progressive immigration agenda that would give everyone a pathway to citizenship.

Why it matters: The group's goals, set out in a white paper released today, seem to fall slightly to the left of what the president-elect plans to propose on Inauguration Day — though not far — and come at a time of intense national polarization over immigration.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
7 mins ago - Health

Demand for coronavirus vaccines is outstripping supply

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Now that nearly half of the U.S. population could be eligible for coronavirus vaccines, America is facing the problem experts thought we’d have all along: demand for the vaccine is outstripping supply.

Why it matters: The Trump administration’s call for states to open up vaccine access to all Americans 65 and older and adults with pre-existing conditions may have helped massage out some bottlenecks in the distribution process, but it’s also led to a different kind of chaos.

Woman who allegedly stole laptop from Pelosi's office to sell to Russia is arrested

Photo: FBI

A woman accused of breaching the Capitol and planning to sell to Russia a laptop or hard drive she allegedly stole from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office was arrested in Pennsylvania's Middle District Monday, the Department of Justice said.

Driving the news: Riley June Williams, 22, is charged with illegally entering the Capitol as well as violent entry and disorderly conduct. She has not been charged over the laptop allegation and the case remains under investigation, per the DOJ.