By Alan Murray and Geoffrey Smith
July 11, 2017

(We are resending today’s CEO Daily because an earlier version misstated the day. We apologise for the confusion.)

Good morning.

Today is Amazon Prime Day (well, actually the window for promotions opened already last night, to be precise). Did you know there is such a thing as Amazon Prime Day? If you’re a Prime subscriber, you can order lots of things at big discounts. If you have an Echo, you can do it without even touching a computer. If you don’t have an Echo, well, they were on sale yesterday for only $90. J.P. Morgan estimates the manufactured holiday could drive a billion dollars worth of sales.

Actually, Prime Day has been around for nearly a decade, and most of that time it’s been a lot of hype with more than a whiff of the ridiculous. But no-one was laughing yesterday as the ballyhoo around Amazon’s garage sale triggered the latest in a series of gut-wrenching sell-offs in retail stocks.

Macy’s lost over 7%, Gap 6.3%, Dick’s Sporting Goods 7.2%, and so on, it seems, to the crack of doom.

Prime Day wasn’t solely responsible for that. The blame can also be shared with Abercrombie & Fitch, whose shares fell over 21% after it said it had given up trying to find a buyer, and a Wall Street Journal report noting that department stores had started to discount cosmetics, one of their last remaining high-margin lines. The Whole Foods deal has also left Wall Street hyper-sensitized to the issue of disruption through e-commerce.

But the hype, it seems, has generated its own reality.

Elsewhere, the health care bill continues to be stalled in Congress, and the White House says it will have a tax reform plan “locked in place” by the end of the summer, ready to be put through the same Republican-only meat grinder in September.

However, the most important thing you can do this morning is to fill out this survey, which will keep CEO Daily’s sponsors happy, and allow us to continue to offer you this newsletter at a price lower than anything you can buy from Amazon.

More news below.

Alan Murray
@alansmurray
alan.murray@timeinc.com

 

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