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US Sues Amazon for Monopoly Practices




US regulators have sued Amazon, alleging that the internet giant is illegally maintaining monopoly power.


The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said Amazon uses "a set of interlocking anticompetitive and unfair strategies" to push up prices and stifle competition.


Amazon said the lawsuit was "wrong on the facts and law, and we look forward to making that case in court".


The U.S. Federal Trade Commission filed a long-awaited antitrust lawsuit against Amazon.com (AMZN.O) on Tuesday and asked the court to consider forcing the online retailer to sell assets as the government accuses Big Tech of monopolizing the most lucrative parts of the internet.


The 172-page suit, the federal government’s most significant challenge to the power of the online store, accused Amazon of protecting a monopoly over swaths of online retail by squeezing merchants and favoring its own services.


For consumers, that meant “artificially higher prices” as merchants were blocked from selling their products for less on other sites, and a worse shopping experience as Amazon boosted its own products and peppered its search results with ads, the lawsuit said. The retailer’s tactics made it impossible for its rivals to compete, the agency and states said.


“Amazon is a monopolist, and it is exploiting its monopolies in ways that leave shoppers and sellers paying more for worse services,” Khan told reporters in a briefing.


David Zapolsky, Amazon senior vice president of global public policy and general counsel, said the suit is “wrong on the facts and the law.”


“If the FTC gets its way, the result would be fewer products to choose from, higher prices, slower deliveries for consumers, and reduced options for small businesses — the opposite of what antitrust law is designed to do,”

he said.

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