Trump: Amazon does ‘great damage’ to retailers

Giles Turner
Bloomberg News Inc. is causing "great damage to tax paying retailers," President Donald Trump said in a Twitter post Wednesday, causing shares in the online retailer to fall 1.2 percent in early trading.

“Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt - many jobs being lost!” Trump said in the tweet.

Trump has previously criticized Amazon and the Washington Post, owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, for its coverage. In June, Trump posted a tweet attacking “AmazonWashingtonPost, sometimes referred to as the guardian of Amazon not paying internet taxes."

In December 2015, Trump also described the Washington Post as a tax shelter that Bezos uses to keep Amazon’s taxes low. Without these arrangements, Trump argued, Amazon’s stock would “crumble like a paper bag.” Bezos actually owns the Washington Post via a holding company separate from Amazon. Amazon did not respond to a request for comment.

Amazon has been battling a number of politicians from both the U.S. and Europe about its stance on tax. In the U.S., Amazon previously fought to only collect sales taxes for purchases in states where it doesn’t have a physical presence. Now it has a legion of distribution centers, it collects sales tax in every state that has one.

The U.S. retailer is currently fighting the European Union over its tax bill, while in March it won a $1.5 billion tax dispute with the IRS.