Pfizer CEO Ian Read. Photo: Mark Neuling/CNBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer posted a $3.9 billion profit in the second quarter, equating to a 29% profit margin. Notably, after being asked on a conference call about the Trump administration's plans to overhaul drug pricing, CEO Ian Read told investors: "I believe we are going to go to a marketplace where we don't have rebates."

The big picture: Read's comment comes a few weeks after he spoke with President Trump about deferring his company's drug price hikes. Pharma companies like Pfizer would relish any changes to the secretive drug rebate system because it would deflect attention away from their pricing practices, but analysts say any changes would not happen soon.

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Updated 6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 12,220,166 — Total deaths: 553,438 — Total recoveries — 6,696,632Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9 p.m. ET: 3,111,902 — Total deaths: 133,195 — Total recoveries: 969,111 — Total tested: 38,032,966Map.
  3. Public health: More young people are spreading the virus Cases rise in 33 statesFlorida reports highest single-day death toll since pandemic began.
  4. Science: World Health Organization acknowledges airborne transmission of coronavirus.
  5. 1 🐂 thing: How the world could monitor for potential pandemic animal viruses.
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Inside Joe Biden's economic plan

Joe Biden on Thursday returned to his hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania, to give his first major speech on economic policy since becoming the Democratic Party’s presumptive presidential nominee.

Axios Re:Cap digs into Biden's plans, how they developed and how they may change, with former U.S. Commerce secretary and campaign surrogate Penny Pritzker.

8 hours ago - World

Countries grapple with whether to lock back down as hotspots emerge

Tokyo in the time of coronavirus. Photo: Charly Triballeau/AFP via Getty

Many politicians and public health officials sounded a similar lockdown refrain in the spring: let’s do this right so we only have to do it once.

Reality check: While some countries have thus far managed to keep cases under control after opening up, dozens of countries that had initially turned a corner are now seeing a worrying rebound. They have to decide if and how to return to lockdown — and whether their populations will stand for it.