Shares in the US e-commerce behemoth Amazon continued to drop on Thursday, wiping over $30 billion from its market value, after reports that President Donald Trump wants to curb the firm’s growing power.
According to a report by the US news and information website Axios, Trump is planning to “go after” the world’s largest online retailer amid growing concerns that Amazon’s business is killing physical shopping malls and mom-and-pop retailers. “He’s obsessed with Amazon,” the media reported, citing one of five sources familiar with the issue.
The US president is reportedly planning to change the tax treatment of the firm. The question was previously raised by Trump when he urged the government to impose an internet tax on online retailers.
I have stated my concerns with Amazon long before the Election. Unlike others, they pay little or no taxes to state & local governments, use our Postal System as their Delivery Boy (causing tremendous loss to the U.S.), and are putting many thousands of retailers out of business!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 29, 2018
“The president has said many times before he’s always looking to create a level playing field for all businesses and this is no different,” said White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders, commenting on the media report. “He’s always going to look at different ways, but there aren’t any specific policies on the table at this time.”
Donald Trump has never been a fan of Amazon, blasting the company on social media during his election campaign, as well as during the first year as president. Trump had previously criticized the Washington Post, owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, for posting fake news.
The president also said that Amazon’s business had triggered job losses for regular citizens, while US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin hinted that the White House might take “a position” on Amazon’s tax-collection policy.
On Wednesday, Amazon’s stock closed 4.38 percent down at $1,431.42 per share. Company stock has nearly quadrupled over the last three years, making its founder Jeff Bezos the wealthiest person on the planet.
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