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Sears has hired liquidator Abacus Advisory Group to sell the retailer's inventory and other physical assets if takeover negotiations with chairman Eddie Lampert fail, Reuters reports.

The bottom line: While this isn't a final nail in the coffin for Lampert's $4.4 billion rescue effort, it does mean the gravediggers have been summoned. "The billionaire and Sears are racing to resolve the bid’s sticking points before a Tuesday court date after negotiations dragged well beyond a Friday deadline. ... The bid would preserve 425 Sears stores and up to 50,000 jobs across the United States. ... A liquidation would put roughly 68,000 people Sears now employs out of work," write Reuters' Jessica DiNapoli and Mike Spector.

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Media prepares to fact check debates in real time

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

From live blogs to video chyrons and tweets, media companies are introducing new ways to fact check the presidential debates in real time this year.

Between the lines: The debates themselves are likely to leave less room for live fact-checking from moderators than a traditional news interview would.

Life after Roe v. Wade

The future seems clear to both parties: The Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade in the next few years, either gradually or in one fell swoop, and the abortion wars will move to a state-by-state battle over freedom and restrictions. 

What's new: Two of the leading activists on opposite sides of the abortion debate outlined for “Axios on HBO” the next frontiers in a post-Roe v. Wade world as the balance on the Supreme Court prepares to shift.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

Jerome Powell, Trump's re-election MVP

Photo illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios. Getty Images photos: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP and Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket

President Trump trails Joe Biden in most polls, has generally lower approval ratings and is behind in trust on most issues. Yet polls consistently give him an edge on the economy, which remains a top priority among voters.

Why it matters: If Trump wins re-election, it will largely be because Americans see him as the force rallying a still-strong U.S. economy, a narrative girded by skyrocketing stock prices and consistently climbing U.S. home values — but the man behind booming U.S. asset prices is really Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell.