Trump: "Amazon Pays Little Or No Taxes, Puts Thousands Of Retailers Out Of Business"

Update: If President Trump's tweet was not enough, White House spokesperson Raj Shah has just confirmed that tax policies need to catch up to Amazon, and President Trump would support tax changes aimed at leveling the playing field, which now favors the online retailer as Amazon has advantage over brick and mortar stores.

“Right now, there is no Internet sales tax and as a result companies like Amazon can buy and sell goods without having to pay basic retail taxes,”

AMZN is extending its losses on these latest headlines...

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As we detailed earlier, the main driver behind yesterday's FANG plunge, was a report in Axios, according to which it was not Facebook that Trump wants to go after, but rather Amazon:

“He’s obsessed with Amazon,” a source told Axios. "Obsessed", and added that Trump has allegedly talked about changing Amazon’s tax treatment because he’s worried about mom-and-pop retailers being put out of business. Another Axios source said that POTUS has "wondered aloud if there may be any way to go after Amazon with antitrust or competition law."

Trump’s deep-seated antipathy toward Amazon surfaces when discussing tax policy and antitrust cases. The president would love to clip CEO Jeff Bezos’ wings. But he doesn’t have a plan to make that happen.

However, as we countered, none of this is new and Trump's feud with Amazon reemerges periodically, although on Wednesday it came at an especially sensitive time for the tech sector, which had gotten clobbered in recent days, making it especially sensitive to negative news (one almost wonders if someone had bought AMZN puts ahead of the Axios news).

And, as if to underscore what we said yesterday, moments ago Trump himself said that he has stated his concerns with Amazon "long before the Election" and said that "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's tweet comes just hours after White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders denied the Axios report on Wednesday, and said that the administration isn’t considering any changes in policy directed at the company.

Which means that the bad blood remains and that nothing has changed in the two or so years since Trump launched his campaign against Jeff Bezos (who also owns the Washington Post, which over the pastg year has made it overly clear what its feelings toward Trump are).

So will today's confirmation that Trump is again on the war path against Amazon - and Jeff Bezos - serve as today's tech selloff catalyst? Keep an eye on AMZN stock for the answer.


Adolph.H. Thu, 03/29/2018 - 08:17 Permalink

The escalation started.

Machine set in motion. 

Trump acts very cautiously to give it legit appearances, because without this he won't be able to dismantle Bezos' unproductive company. 

That might even be a way out for Bezos... think about debt and losses accumulated over the years, and the burden on society.

He wouldn't be liable if Amazon would fold because of adverse conditions. I'm not even sure if it's not already explicitly written as a risk in their SEC filings... [Edit: bingo it is written, go check for yourself on ] 

Sweetest of exit strategies: transfer money in your account that constitute debt for your company, then fold your company. 

Lather, rinse.


Is there some tip for Trump? 

In reply to by

philipat JRobby Thu, 03/29/2018 - 08:58 Permalink

Taxes? Yeah and fair enough. Payback for WaPo? More likely and fair enough also. Bezos should keep his fucking mouth shut and stay under the radar but with their Billions, these Guys recognise that they run the country.

But if the US really wants to eliminate tax evasion it should first change the Regulations for Delaware Corporatations and also change Regulations regarding Real Estate investments.? Just sayin..

In reply to by JRobby eforce Thu, 03/29/2018 - 09:43 Permalink

In Bezos'es case, the cure isn't worse than the disease. TAX HIM NOW.

I like taxes about as much as the next guy, but, it's time to start collecting a flat sales tax, something like 5%, on all internet sales, to be divided proportionally, not equally, between all of the cities K-12 schools. The funds could be allocated based on zip codes.  Skip the Fed, State, County and local governments.  They get nothing.  All of the funds go into the educational systems, which is about as close as possible to putting the funds back into the taxpayer's pockets, and, as a bonus, it should lower property taxes and increase the real value of real estate.  Who knows, it might even move the U.S. up from being a mid-tier educational country.

In case you don't remember, internet sales taxes were postponed in order to allow internet businesses to establish a foothold.  It appears that b2b and b2c are well past that stage.  The local tax revenues lost due to internet sales are being made up in additional taxes elsewhere.  In addition, the bricks & mortar carnage has reached the point of no return.  It's way beyond the time to make a change.

In reply to by eforce the artist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:11 Permalink

Pinhead, you are already making up those lost sales taxes on every bill you pay.

In addition to stuffing Bezos'es pockets with fiat, you have shifted enormous power to douchebags like him.

Such as, employment of tens of thousands of workers and the collapse of local economies.

I don't know about you, but, I'd rather not have to work packing boxes for Amazon.

Are you beginning to get the picture "Artist", or, are you too high on paint fumes?

(did I just hear a pin drop?)

In reply to by the artist

Stan522 GunnyHerd Thu, 03/29/2018 - 11:50 Permalink

The premise that Amazon does not pay taxes is a misconception. Whenever sales tax is charged whether through an Amazon purchase, or from a brick and mortar store, it is the consumer that pays the tax. If there was a 100% legal requirement for Amazon to add sales tax to a product they ship, they would add it to the selling price and the consumer would pay it... period!

In reply to by GunnyHerd

Kprime Stan522 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 14:35 Permalink

those who support taxing amazon, or anyone, are too stupid to understand your concept Stan522.  Further, at what point will folks stop agreeing to anymore taxes?  4 trillion is not enough, maybe .gov needs to tax the nation 28 trillion, or 56 trillion; who knows how many trillions the stupid sheep will agree to as long as it sounds like it is coming out of someone else' pocket.  Very few can grasp the concept that business do not pay taxes, ever; only the customer can pay the tax. 

.gov is killing the host nation with the virus etaxola. business is merely the transport vector, like a mosquito injecting a virus from a bat out of hell.

In reply to by Stan522

the artist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 12:46 Permalink

Your logic makes the brain hurt. 

Lets see, because we are "already making up those taxes" your solution is to implement another tax? Already that is contradictory. You depend on the central state to shake things out in your favor by lowering your retail store sales tax. That is idiotic and inconsistent with all of known history. 

I have never given Bezos a cent. 

nobody cares what you do for a living. are a douchebag. 

Now please indulge us with your argument for a new tax for all of us to share. 

In reply to by the artist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:40 Permalink

Dood! Check your meds.  Stress kills.  And, you had better be finished with your name calling. 

It's a fairly simple formula.  Maybe too much for your left brain?

Try again.

There will always be taxes.

If there is a disruption in the collection of taxes, the taxes will be made up in other existing or new taxes.

The sales tax being avoided on Amazon, eBay, and other disrupters will be collected in property tax, local increases in sales tax, license plates, city stickers, parking tickets, phone bills, electric bills, water bills, airport taxes, and on and on.

That's it man.  If you don't get it, refer to the quote below.

“Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that.”

In reply to by the artist

Sean7k Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:28 Permalink

Give the sales taxes to the schools? For what? indoctrination and massive ignorance? Taxes are theft, regardless of the recipient.  As it stands, I can choose to not pay them and I prefer this system.

If you're stuck packing boxes for Amazon, it is more likely you are skills deficient and incapable of real work. Sounds like a personal problem.

As for paying taxes on bills, you only have bills if you generate them. Try consuming less and investing more, then taxes are further diminished.

Finally, bezos is financed by the london money trust (this is why he can spend with no attention to the bottom line, they have been doing it for over a century). If you think Trump will go against (((them))), you are kidding yourself. The only way bezos goes down is if he isn't following orders. See zuckerberg.

In reply to by Sean7k Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:52 Permalink

Did you go to school?

Were you indoctrinated?

It seems like you think the educational system is broken.  If so, why wouldn't you rather target more resources to education?  Would you rather see it go to the MIC?

Taxes are theft?  How do you unpack that statement?  Police, firemen, 1st responders, local road maintenance, crossing guards, teachers, USPS, social services, and thousands more.  You want them all eliminated?

Most of us have bills; property tax, electric, gas, phone, health insurance, and on and on.  Who are you? Ted Kaczynski out in a cabin?

I don't think anything about what Trump may or may not do, I think Trump only thinks about Trump.


In reply to by Sean7k

Blankenstein Thu, 03/29/2018 - 14:12 Permalink

" Police, firemen, 1st responders, local road maintenance, crossing guards, teachers, USPS, social services, and thousands more.  You want them all eliminated?"

Eliminated?  What a load of BS. In many states these "civil servants" earn a good deal more than the private sector workers.  And where they really make out is the gold-plated pensions.  And they are able to take these lucrative pensions in their 50s.  

"It seems like you think the educational system is broken."

It is completely broken.  They have remedial programs at universities and junior colleges because the dum-dums aren't prepared to do freshman level work.  

The public schools churn out shit, yet the administrators and teachers are handsomely paid, no connection whatsoever between pay and product.

In reply to by

Hugh_Jorgan Blankenstein Thu, 03/29/2018 - 15:12 Permalink

In a civil society not all taxes are theft. The progressive INCOME TAX however, IS theft. If you look at the definition of a tax it fails to meet the requirements of either type. Income tax is wealth redistribution, whether you agree or not you must see that it taxes the upper 50% of society who pay 97% of all the tax burden. Theft.

NOt to mention the people who advocate for "the poor" couldn't care less about the poor. It's about virtue signalling and buying votes with tax dollars. Although, both parties in DC are corrupt and buy influence with our money. You can see their hypocrisy in the GOP's failure to repeal Obamacare despite voting to do so numerous times, pre-Trump. And, you can see it in the DNC as they balked, hemmed, hawed & punted on DACA when Trump offered up a "birthday party" style a silver platter. They all want to continue playing g0d with OUR money and get paid to do it. Theft.

In reply to by Blankenstein

Sean7k Thu, 03/29/2018 - 15:00 Permalink

Yes and yes. It is broken and I have yet to see an instance where throwing more money down the drain will solve it. It is a curriculum and teacher skills issue. Try reading, "The Underground History of American Education". More important, the system is doing exactly what the elites want it to: create compliant slaves.

Yes again. All services which can be done privately and at less cost. More important, the paying for these services would be voluntary.

All of which are determined by your largess. Especially health insurance, are you one of the insipid drug addicts?  House larger than necessary? Living in a high tax state? Do you have a home which is energy efficient? Why the on and on? You have MORE bills? What a rube.

It is because people are such willing tax and debt slaves, the State can get away with it. In any market economy, regardless of the type of government, the consumer is king. We control it all, yet we surrender this power through persuasion, persuasion made simple by churning out idiot students.

By the way, Ted Kaczynski was a product and shining example of our school system.

If you fail to think about what Trump might do, then think it is analogous to Trump thinking about Trump, you are evidently a prize example of our school system...

In reply to by

Hugh_Jorgan the artist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:23 Permalink

Exactly. Bezos is a jerk, most of the uber-rich are. But with Amazon saw a niche and filled it, can you blame them for utilizing the market? Who here of modest means doesn't look for the best price on goods? We have to, inflation is killing us. Amazon is an convenient way to quickly find the lowest price in the market and deals on scratch-and-dent or open box items. Not to mention Amazon employs over 500, 000 people! They are huge and disruptive but, they have an average lifetime profit margin of 1%, FCOL!!! In Q4 2017 they enjoyed a record 3% profit margin.

Should they be broken up into separate firms for different markets such as Electronic media, Merchandise, Services? Maybe. But we need to be careful we don't start demonizing success, that is very dangerous.

In reply to by the artist

Hugh_Jorgan Thu, 03/29/2018 - 14:40 Permalink

I don't think you remember how overpriced things have been all along. The brick and mortar stores have sky-high overhead, we pay for their lease, lights and A/C in the form of higher prices. It has zero to do with Amazon, if anything Amazon has driven overall prices down. Thus, the carnage in the retail market. Those businesses who were smart cultivated an online presence to compete. Those who didn't will go away, this is how the market works, creative destruction. It's Economics 101.

In reply to by

the artist Hugh_Jorgan Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:05 Permalink

Hugh, You can't argue with statist types. What is a statist? One who advocates for more power to be given to the central state. That might be knowingly or through ignorance.

In this case it is ignorance of the concept that Large Companies love regulation and taxes because Small Business cannot compete with their economies of scale. 

The other concept missing is that the central state will never reduce in size. It grows by instituting new taxes. They use those taxes to pick winners and losers. 

The problems we are facing are not the titans, it is the headwinds that we face if we as private individuals attempt to start, run and prosper in a small business. 

Anybody that has ever made actual things to sell to actual people locally or internationally knows that this is the Actual Problemtm that we face. 

Adding taxes too our newest and greatest frontier in the guise of a class war is totally shortsighted and a band-aide. 

Free up the gears of small business and we won't need Amazon. I am not even talking about environmental issues here. I am addressing specifically, the rules, fees, taxes, regulations, filing deadlines, insurance, compliance etc etc etc. 

Headwinds over which large companies enjoy an advantage and depend on to assert dominance. 

Piss on anyone who wakes up and starts advocating a new tax for us. 

In reply to by Hugh_Jorgan

mc225 the artist Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:53 Permalink

--Fuck you. No. Its not time to start any new tax. Asshole. --


increasing taxes will only take us further into the swamp. what people need to do is move over to buying on ebay, for instance. i was a big purchaser at amazon, then realized that ebay offers all of that, and more, without the sleazy feeling.

In reply to by the artist mc225 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:59 Permalink

So, I see you never had an issue which required dealing with the criminal enterprise known as Paypal?

You should take the time to read some reviews.

I was involved in a case with eBay where they "stonewalled" me when I pointed out a seller who was an out and out criminal.  They allowed his auctions to continue for weeks in order to cover up a potential hit on their reputation.   eBay and Paypal are the definition of sleaze.

In reply to by mc225

OverTheHedge mc225 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 12:57 Permalink

Governments muck about with the playing field, allowing this kind of nonsense. Slightly disingenuous of Trump to blame Amazon, when Amazon are complying carefully with all tax rules as required. It is the government's incompetence that has allowed Amazon to profit at everyone else''s expense. Now would be a good time to make it fair for everyone. It is not Trump saving the little people from the evil corporations, it is Trump trying to sort out an incompetent, incoherent tax regime.

Obviously, it would be best to stop charging bricks-and-mortar businesses tax, but that will never happen, so second best would be to charge Amazon an appropriate amount. It would hardly be difficult to charge the appropriate state tax by zip code - the stuff has to be delivered, after all. If poor old Amazon has added costs because it has to charge, and then forward, different amounts depending upon the state, well - tough.


In reply to by mc225

the artist mc225 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:11 Permalink

You get it.

Instead of advocating for a new tax why not point out what Bezos takes advantage of. 

Slave labor, subsidized transportation, economies of scale, giant failing shipping industry. 

Maybe address some of the adult problems instead of carrying water for the central state by advocating for a new tax. Never mind how they are spending that shit. 

In reply to by mc225

arby63 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 10:52 Permalink

5% may be a bit steep but we do need to fix our schools from coast to coast. This isn't about sales taxes as much as it used to be though.

Most people are paying a percentage of local sales tax on nearly everything purchased through Amazon lately. The more fulfillment centers, the more local taxes collected.

In reply to by

jin187 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 11:27 Permalink

Fuck B&M.  They're over saturated, which is why they're failing.  Why do we need 3 coffee shops, 3 burger joints, and 3 major department stores on the same corner, like every 1-2 miles?  All of them generally have the same prices, the same products, the same everything.  The population has gone up 50% since back in the days before we had internet, but the number B&M's has tripled, especially mass produced corporate Mcfranchises.  There's a Walmart I know of with a Subway in it, and across the street from the Walmart is another fucking Subway.  There are some places in town where I can stand in the middle of a city block, look both ways, and have the same store in eyeshot in both directions.  If half of them closed right now, I'd still be able to walk 500 feet in any direction, and get a burger, a coffee, or a laser printer.

There's also the matter of states taxing interstate commerce, which is the real reason no internet tax has been levied.  They were fine with it when mail order was a niche a handful of people used to get occasional junk, but now that it's easy and efficient, fuck the law, right?  Now we have states asking you to claim your online purchases so they can charge you on your income taxes to get around that.  What's next, asking you to claim your purchases while traveling, so they don't miss your sales taxes while you're gone?  Coming to a Kalifornia near you.

This is all a moot point anyway, since Amazon does collect sales tax on things it sells.  Where it doesn't collect sales tax is things that independent sellers list on Amazon, where they are merely a 3rd party.  If Amazon has to collect taxes on this kind of sale, then why does no one mention eBay?  Fuck, why don't we make Craiglist and PayPal collect sales taxes?

Of course, in the end, what the poor little B&M's won't tell you is that the sole beneficiary of more sales taxes is Walmart and Co.  If Amazon's prices go up 5%, that makes Walmart the king of low prices once again.  Anyone that thinks Amazon having to raise prices is going to save niche stores like Radio Shack, Borders, or Toys R' Us is fooling themselves.  Every bit of market share taken from Amazon is going straight into Walmart's pocket.

In reply to by jin187 Thu, 03/29/2018 - 13:23 Permalink

I agree with almost all of what you stated.  But, why not let the b&m compete against Walmart (who I hate and rarely use)?  They compete in restaurants, cleaners, service industries, banks, real estate, and a whole lot more.  I don't really care about fast food and coffee joints.  I'm not a patron.  I'm not willing to capitulate to Amazon.  And yes to treating eBay the same as Amazon.  Craigs is a different story.  Paypal is a criminal enterprise.

In reply to by jin187

bloofer Thu, 03/29/2018 - 12:31 Permalink

All of the funds go into the educational systems, which is about as close as possible to putting the funds back into the taxpayer's pockets, and, as a bonus, it should lower property taxes and increase the real value of real estate.  Who knows, it might even move the U.S. up from being a mid-tier educational country.

A better way to "put the funds back in the taxpayers' pockets" and improve the quality of education would be to SHUT DOWN the public school system and end all taxation on its behalf. That way, everybody would have more money to spend on retailers, and that big boil in which the nation's stupidity is encysted would be lanced and drained.

In reply to by

338 Fri, 03/30/2018 - 08:34 Permalink

OK.  And how are the kids going to receive their education?


I'll bite, their fucking parents could teach them.


I won't put my dog in a kennel, but millions of parents have children under the expectation that it takes a village to raise a child.


Well, that's fucking communism.


Read the ten principles of Marxism, and tell me who was the first advocate of 'state' control of public education.


Of course,  you were probably educated in, and seem to be a huge advocate of the state mind washing camps, so maybe you have never heard of Marx and Hegel.


They don't teach about Marxism in schools, they teach Marxism.





In reply to by