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Wilbur Ross (left) and Larry Kudlow (right). Photo by Brandan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Wilbur Ross, who served as U.S. Commerce Secretary during all of former President Trump's term, has turned his attention to the booming market for blank check companies, or SPACs.

Driving the news: Ross will serve as president, chairman and CEO of a new SPAC that seeks to raise $345 million in an IPO. Among those on its board of directors is Larry Kudlow, Trump's former chief economic adviser who recently joined Fox Business Channel to host a new program.

Between the lines: SPACs seek to raise money from public market investors, and then use that capital to help purchase a private company.

  • Once the purchase is complete, the acquired company becomes publicly traded.
  • Already in 2020, 100 SPACs have completed IPOs, raising over $29 billion.

Ross, who made his fortune as a private equity investor, is joined on his SPAC by some executives from private equity firm BroadPeak Global.

  • Many SPACs target specific industries, but this one appears to be sector agnostic.

Go deeper

Surprising pandemic side effect: Soaring trade deficits

Source: Census Bureau and Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

Inflation and jobs may get all the economic headlines, but meanwhile a big shift is taking place in the underpinnings of the world economy: The U.S. trade deficit is soaring.

What's happening: Americans' spending on imported physical goods has gone through the roof, while exports are growing slowly, making the U.S. the world's consumer of last resort.

Mike Allen, author of AM
2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Third Way: "Big Lie" could become "Big Coup"

Graphic: Third Way

Third Way, the center-left think tank, is urging fellow Democrats to respond to the Capitol riot with "the size, scope, and seriousness of a presidential campaign," co-founder Matt Bennett tells me.

Driving the news: "For the first time in U.S. history, a party must mount two parallel presidential campaigns: one to win the election, and the other to prevent its theft," Bennett said, calling this "a Paul Revere moment."

Advocates say Biden has let Haitian migrants down

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, Christian Torres/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Continued turmoil in Haiti is causing a growing number of Haitians to try to make it to American shores — and some advocates say the Biden administration isn't supporting this community in its time of crisis.

The big picture: Haitian-American activists in South Florida told Axios Today they feel like President Biden has gone back on campaign promises he made to the community to stand up for them.