Report: Trump Is ‘Obsessed With Amazon’ — And The Stock Is Falling

Report: Trump Is ‘Obsessed With Amazon’ — And The Stock Is Falling

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by: Wayne Duggan, Benzinga Staff Writer

 

Facebook, Inc. FB 1.1% is being investigated by the Federal Trade Commission, but a new report from Axios suggests President Donald Trump is much more concerned with Amazon.com, Inc. AMZN 3.9%.

Axios cites five sources who have discussed Amazon with Trump, all of whom describe the president as searching for ways to stand up against Amazon on behalf of mom-and-pop retailers.

“He’s obsessed with Amazon,” one source told the publication. “Obsessed.”

Trump has reportedly been asking about ways the administration could target Amazon via changes to tax law or antitrust proceedings. Fortunately for Amazon, Trump hasn’t found a plan that works.

Axios said Trump’s problems with Amazon stem from the damage the company is doing to Trump’s wealthy friends who work in the brick-and-mortar retail business. Trump has reportedly been telling others that Amazon gets preferential tax treatment and takes advantage of low U.S. Postal Service rates.

One Axios source said it's been explained to Trump that "his perception is inaccurate," and the USPS in fact profits from Amazon's business. 

Trump also reportedly has a beef with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who owns The Washington Post. At the same time, Axios' sources said Trump shows very little interest in Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Last year, Trump told Axios that he doesn’t mind Facebook because the platform helps him reach his base of supporters.

Vice President Mike Pence is reportedly concerned about the level of power that Facebook and Alphabet, Inc. GOOG 0.85% GOOGL 0.73% are gaining. Pence is reportedly troubled by the influence Facebook and Google have over the media and the access the two companies have to user data.

In the past two weeks, shares of Amazon, Alphabet and Facebook are down 9.7 percent, 11.9 percent and 15.6 percent, respectively, reflecting an overall drop in the tech sector. 

Amazon shares were down 5.68 percent at the time of publication Wednesday after the Axios report was published. 

 

© 2018 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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