President Donald Trump took to Twitter early this morning to attack Amazon, blaming the popular online retailer for job losses across the nation.
"Amazon is doing great damage to tax paying retailers," Trump tweeted. "Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt — many jobs being lost!"
Amazon is doing great damage to tax paying retailers. Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt - many jobs being lost!— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1502878365.0
The tweet appeared to have some impact on Amazon's market value, with the company's stock falling as much as 1.2 percent following the tweet, according to CNBC. That amounts to a loss of approximated $5.7 billion in market cap.
Trump has criticized Amazon and its CEO, Jeff Bezos, multiple times before. The president has also carried a long-running feud with The Washington Post, which Bezos owns.
In February 2016, Trump threatened Amazon at a campaign rally, saying the retailer would "have such problems" if he became president.
Trump and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin have both expressed issues with Amazon's tax policies, particularly whether or not Amazon should be required to collect sales taxes on purchases in states where the company has no physical presence.
The National Conference of State Legislatures reported that the tax loophole cost states $17.2 billion in lost sales taxes in 2016. Amazon began collecting sales taxes from all 45 states that have a statewide sales tax on April 1, according to CNN.
Amazon still doesn't require shoppers to pay sales tax on purchases from third-party vendors that sell products through Amazon.
"I am encouraged that Amazon is now charging tax, I believe, on their own sales but not the marketplace," Mnuchin said according to CNBC. "I'm not sure I understand the consistency on that, but I respect the states' ability that there's an awful lot of money that's not being collected."
Amazon's ability to offer goods at low prices with cheap or free shipping has put pressure on retailers to either give up market share to Amazon, or cut their prices to a lower mark that is potentially unsustainable for most traditional retailers, Steve Dennis wrote in Forbes. As a result, many brick-and-mortar retail establishments around the country have been forced to close locations.
However, from a consumer standpoint, Amazon has been revolutionary. Amazon is unmatched in its sales volume and provides shoppers the ability to purchase clothes, groceries and everything in between with a few clicks (or a few words to an Amazon Alexa device) to be delivered within days or even hours.
Amazon's advances in warehousing and delivery technology allow customers in increasingly remote locations to have access to products much more easily and in a more timely manner. Future advances include Amazon's continued efforts to develop its drone delivery system and expand it into cities.