This Week in Business: Amazon’s Latest Acquisition – The New York Times

by | Jul 24, 2022 | Business

Credit…Giacomo BagnaraWhat’s Up? (July 17-23)Amazon’s Leap Into Health CareIt is theoretically possible to go through a day patronizing only Amazon-owned companies: You might buy groceries at Whole Foods, listen to a book on Audible on your commute, check your Goodreads account and then, of course, visit Now, the e-commerce giant is making a new push into health care. Amazon announced on Thursday that it had reached a $3.9 billion deal to buy One Medical, a network of primary care clinics, as part of its quest to become a major player in the industry. The deal is the first acquisition under Andy Jassy, who became chief executive a year ago after Jeff Bezos stepped down. Mr. Jassy’s approach to the role has been much different from his predecessor’s, but on this decision, he hasn’t diverged too drastically from Mr. Bezos. One Medical is not the first health-care-related company Amazon has purchased. In 2018, it acquired PillPack, an online pharmacy.A Big Rate Increase in EuropeSurprising many, the European Central Bank raised its three interest rates half a percentage point, not the quarter point that had initially been forecast, in a decisive move to bring rapid inflation under control. The bank’s officials said they intended to “front-load” its rate increases, with an eye on the worsening economic outlook and the escalating energy crisis spurred by fears of natural gas cutoffs from Russia in response to Western sanctions. The E.C.B. has been slower to raise rates than some other central banks because the factors driving inflation in Europe, like snags in the global supply chain and rising energy prices because of the war in Ukraine, are largely beyond policymakers’ control. Those problems have also contributed to the weakening of the euro, making inflation worse. Some observers say officials are still moving too slowly, while others fear that the central bank could become too aggressive, causing the European economy to stagnate.It Could Have Been WorseIt was another bleak quarter …

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