Apple Stock Drops Amid DOJ Antitrust Investigation News


Apple stock was affected negatively on Monday (June 3) by news that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is considering an investigation into the tech giant, according to a report by CNBC.

Apple’s downward slide joins similar losses by Google, Facebook and Amazon after the DOJ and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced plans to review antitrust concerns with the companies.

Apple shares fell almost 2 percent after the report, and they were trading higher than usual before the news. The Nasdaq Composite index, which is heavily tech-oriented, also fell.

Reports from both The Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post outlined the issues, with the former reporting the FTC will look into how Facebook’s workings potentially alter digital competition, and the latter noting regulators are increasing scrutiny over Amazon’s practices. The Journal also reported the DOJ is investigating Google. Shares of all three firms were negatively affected by the news.

Reuters is reporting that the Apple investigation is tied to the Google one, and it started with meetings between the two regulatory agencies.

The move is a new step toward regulation for tech companies, who have faced regulatory oversight in the European Union but have so far held off such actions in the U.S.

Apple has faced mounting criticism over its control of the App Store, which is the only means for downloading apps on the iPhone. Spotify and other companies have criticized Apple for what they view as anti-competitive behavior.

Apple’s control of the App Store means that it draws subscription fees from the developers who use it, as well as showcasing its own apps.

The “Apple tax,” as it is often called, means the company gets a good amount of its revenue from these fees, and developers have cried foul because they are often competing with Apple’s native apps. Spotify currently has a complaint against Apple in the EU, which is pending investigation by authorities.