Amazon plunges 4 percent amid criticism from Trump

Company stock falls another 4.6 percent before clawing back day’s losses 

Amazon plunges 4 percent amid criticism from Trump

World Bulletin / News Desk

Amazon fell more than 4 percent Thursday after President Donald Trump openly criticized the e-commerce giant's practices for delivery and taxes. 

"I have stated my concerns with Amazon long before the Election," Trump wrote on Twitter, after reports a day earlier said he was "obsessed" with getting Amazon. 

The Axios media outlet reported Wednesday that two sources close to the president said “he’s wondered aloud if there may be any way to go after Amazon with antitrust or competition law".

Trump kept up the attack Thursday and appears to have inaccurate information about the way Amazon runs its business.

"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!” he wrote on social media.

States cannot collect taxes from mail order or online sales from firms without a physical presence in that state, according to a Supreme Court ruling in 1992. 

But in January, the top court announced it would consider taxes from online sales and is expected to issue a ruling before the end of the year. 

Meanwhile, Amazon collects taxes from its customers in 45 states, but it is the company’s third-party sellers from which states do not collect taxes. 

If the Supreme Court rules for the collection of tax from online purchases, it could be a win for Amazon because third-party sellers would raise prices to accommodate the tax and Amazon could sell from its inventory cheaper. 

Trump’s claim that Amazon uses the postal service as the company’s “Delivery Boy” is also off the mark.

Amazon owns a fleet of planes for delivery and uses the U.S. Postal Service as the last step to get its products locally to its millions of customers.

In some major U.S. cities, including San Francisco, Philadelphia and New York, Amazon’s has prompted the postal service to operate seven days a week because of deliveries, helping generate revenue for the postal service.

Some observers see the attack on Amazon as stemming from unfavorable coverage by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos-owned The Washington Post of Trump during the 2016 presidential elections. 

"The @washingtonpost loses money (a deduction) and gives owner @JeffBezos power to screw public on low taxation of @Amazon! Big tax shelter," Trump said on Twitter in December 2015.

 After falling 4.4 percent Wednesday, shares fell to as low as $1,365 at 10 a.m. EST (1400GMT) Thursday, a decline of 4.6 percent, while the company's market value fell to $660 billion from a close of $724 billion Monday. 

Shares picked up in early afternoon trading and were in positive territory.

Last Mod: 30 Mart 2018, 11:18
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