Illustration: Sam Jayne/Axios

The London Stock Exchange said it's in talks to buy Refinitiv, the financial data provider that The Blackstone Group just last year carved out of Thomson Reuters (which retained a 45% stake).

Why it matters: This would put the British bourse in direct competition with Bloomberg's terminals business.

  • ROI: Blackstone's deal valued Refinitiv at around $20 billion, while LSE reportedly is working on a $27 billion price-tag (including around $12 billion in assumed debt). Blackstone already spun off Refinitiv's Tradeweb bond-trading business via an IPO this past April.
  • The bottom line: "Exchanges are just data platforms." — Mike Santoli, CNBC

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Cleanup on aisle Biden

Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

After two gaffes and a low blow from President Trump questioning his faith, Joe Biden spent Thursday evening off his own message — clarifying comments and responding to attacks.

Why it matters: Biden’s responses reflect what we could see a lot more of in the next few months — cringeworthy comments and Trump smears, smacking into each other and pulling the Democrat off course.

2020 election strategy: Hire all the lawyers

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The coronavirus has sent overall U.S. unemployment into the double digits — but it's a sort of full-employment act for election law attorneys.

The big picture: The prospect of extended court fights over COVID-19-related voting changes, an absentee ballot avalanche, foreign interference and contested presidential results has prompted a hire-all-the-lawyers binge by candidates and campaigns — not just in swing states but around the country.

Right-wing media defanged by dissolving anti-Biden storylines

Data: NewsWhip; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

The three biggest anti-Joe Biden storylines in right-wing media over the last year have either fizzled or are getting less online traction than they used to, according to data from NewsWhip provided exclusively to Axios.

Why it matters: This dynamic has rendered a formidable media ecosystem less effective in boosting President Trump as we move into the heart of the 2020 campaign.