Facebook Vice President David Marcus is the face of the company's Libra digital currency, but the original driving force was a 26-year-old female corporate-development...Technologyread more
Amazon's new policy for account suspensions doesn't go far enough to protect sellers from potentially unfair and wrongful suspensions, merchants say.Technologyread more
There is no end in sight to the Boeing 737 Max grounding after two fatal crashes, prompting airlines to rethink their growth plans.Airlinesread more
After a year of flooding, Midwest farmers face a stifling heat wave that's spreading across the U.S.Weather & Natural Disastersread more
On Saturday, Disney's Marvel Studios announced its upcoming slate of superhero films during a panel at San Diego Comic-Con.Entertainmentread more
Moving lots of data to a public cloud over the internet can take months or years. CNBC got an inside look at how AWS transfers data to the cloud for its clients.Technologyread more
A quarter of the S&P 500 companies report earnings next week, and that could buffet the market as investors await the July Fed meeting.Market Insiderread more
Iran's Revolutionary Guard claims a British tanker it still holds, Stena Impero, failed to follow international maritime rules.World Newsread more
"It troubles me that the most important political office in the world is becoming the face of racism and exclusion," Kaeser said in a Twitter post.Politicsread more
Silver's rally could be losing its shine after the precious metal reached its year-to-date high, futures experts warn.Futures Nowread more
Some 40% of Americans would struggle to come up with even $400 to pay for an emergency expense. Just how are so many Americans so short on cash? Blame debt.Personal Financeread more
It all happened in one day.
Though not directly related, the tale of internet giant and that of department store chain Nordstrom portray how the retail landscape is quickly evolving.
Alibaba's shares soared on Thursday after CFO Maggie Wu told a packed audience at the company's investor day that total sales could climb by 45 to 49 percent this year, a target that tops analysts' expectations by 10 percentage points.
"The company will continue building its ecosystem based on data technology with core businesses supported by payment, logistics, data management platform and cloud," Jefferies analyst Jessie Guo wrote in a note to clients.
The internet giant is showing how it can evolve beyond its e-commerce roots by dipping into digital media and entertainment, cross-border e-commerce and even digital marketing, representing additional sources of revenue. And Wall Street is happy about it.
Meantime, Nordstrom's stock was also climbing higher Thursday, but for an entirely different reason. The traditionally brick-and-mortar retailer said it's exploring a "going private" transaction by the Nordstrom family, who formed a special committee to consider such a deal.
"I think this is a clear message that consumers are changing how they operate and that there is a free fall happening in retail," Eric Schiffer, chairman of DigitalMarketing.com, told CNBC in an interview, reflecting on the two companies' narratives.
"It's crippling old brands and hanging over their head in a very threatening way. If you're an e-commerce pure play, you're in a powerful position."
Nordstrom's shareholders have likely been "terrified" by the latest headlines about mall closings and weak same-store sales, and the company's value would erode should it stay as it is today, Schiffer went on. It might be better for the retailer to "deal with the storm privately," he added.
Nordstrom has shown signs of trying to beef up its e-commerce platform and especially its digital version of the off-price Nordstrom Rack nameplate.
During its latest quarter, Nordstrom said its online sales were 24 percent of total net sales for the period, driven by 11 percent growth at Nordstrom.com and 19 percent growth on Nordstromrack.com.
With Thursday's gains, shares of Alibaba have climbed more than 60 percent for the year-to-date period, while Nordstrom's stock has fallen about 5 percent.
"For me, this is a natural transition for [Nordstrom]," Kathy Gersch, a former Nordstrom executive and current executive vice president at Kotter International, told CNBC in an interview. "This gives them an opportunity to take a bit longer-term view on what does [restructuring] look like — thinking how we reshape ourselves without market pressures."
Gersch, who led the retailer through M&A deals and helped Nordstrom grow its private-label brands during her time there, said she expects the family's conversations about going private to move quickly from here.
"It's natural, and it should be natural," she went on. "They have to evolve in terms of how their business is operating. They've been making some small inroads but need to do a lot more."
Most retailers today appear to be looking for their so-called sweet spot when it comes to operating both a physical and digital presence.
While some headlines warn of a total retail apocalypse, "We firmly believe the future of retail has a physical component and e-commerce component," KeyBanc Capital Markets analyst Ed Yruma told CNBC.
Amazon opening bookstores and grocery stores, along with Wal-Mart's venture into delivering products, hints at where the future of retail is headed — a healthy mix of everything, Yruma said. "The level of change we're seeing in retail is unprecedented."