U.S. President Donald Trump threw out a slew of accusations against Amazon via Twitter on Thursday, but couldn’t share any evidence of his claims or the actions he might take against the eCommerce giant.
“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!” Trump tweeted early on Thursday, according to Reuters.
This isn’t the first time Trump has attacked the company and its CEO, Jeff Bezos. This recent tweet comes after an Axios report revealed that while the president isn’t paying attention to the Facebook scandal, he is apparently “obsessed” with Amazon and has wondered out loud if the government could go after the company from an antitrust or competition standpoint.
However, White House spokeswoman Lindsay Walters said on Thursday that Trump isn’t discussing any new actions against Amazon.
Amazon shares fell as much as 4.5 percent in morning trade after the tweets, but recovered and closed up just over 1 percent. Amazon declined to comment on the president's remarks.
While one of Trump’s chief complaints about Amazon is that it has put mom-and-pop shops out of business, analysts say there are other factors at work, such as high debt – and Amazon is not the only company responsible.
“Yes, Amazon has put thousands of retailers out of business,” said Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter. “Walmart has also put thousands of retailers out of business. So has Starbucks, Barnes & Noble, Kroger and any other superstore that took share from small businesses.”
It's also important to note that Bezos privately owns The Washington Post, which won a Pulitzer Prize in 2017 for its investigation of Trump’s charity donations. But White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah claimed that the president's criticism wasn't the result of a personal grudge.
“A lot of people have made this, with respect to Amazon, about personalities and the CEO at Amazon – we’re talking about Jeff Bezos here,” he said on Thursday on Fox News. “It’s really about policy.”