Amazon hits $1 trillion valuation amid Trump attacks

Amazon hits $1 trillion valuation amid Trump attacks
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Amazon briefly exceeded $1 trillion in value Tuesday amid growing criticism from President TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Trump sells U.N. reorganizing and Kavanaugh allegations dominate Ex-Trump staffer out at CNN amid “false and defamatory accusations” Democrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her MORE, becoming the second U.S. corporation to reach that threshold.

The online retail giant eclipsed the $1 trillion mark Tuesday morning when the price of one of its 487,741,189 shares rose to $2,050.27, according to CNBC. The stock value later slipped but has gained 1.17 percent as of 12:30 p.m.

Apple was the first U.S. corporation to exceed $1 trillion in value when it crossed the threshold on Aug. 2. The combined value of both companies is equal to roughly 10 percent of U.S. gross domestic product.

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Amazon has dominated U.S. retail as more consumers shift away from brick-and-mortar stores toward online retailers. The company accounts for 49 cents of every e-commerce dollar spent in the U.S., contributing to its $178 billion in annual revenue, and it employs more than 550,000 workers, according to The New York Times.

Amazon has expanded into web hosting services, advertising, consumer technology, entertainment and e-books since launching as an online bookstore in July 1995.

While Amazon’s plans to build another headquarters have attracted offers of lucrative tax breaks and benefits from dozens of state and city leaders, the company has been fiercely attacked by Trump over its size and influence. The president told Fox News last week that Amazon and fellow tech giants Google and Facebook could be in a “very antitrust situation,” but declined to say whether they should be dismantled.

Trump has been critical of several Silicon Valley titans over what he considers rampant anti-conservative bias, but has been particularly hostile toward Amazon. The president frequently attacks Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post, and links the online retailer to the newspaper’s White House coverage. The Post has said that Bezos plays no role in its editorial decisions.

"The Amazon Washington Post has gone crazy against me ever since they lost the Internet Tax Case in the U.S. Supreme Court two months ago," Trump tweeted in July, seeming to refer to South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., which determined that states may tax purchases made from out-of-state sellers. "Next up is the U.S. Post Office which they use, at a fraction of real cost, as their 'delivery boy' for a BIG percentage of their packages."

Trump has frequently criticized Amazon’s agreement with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) to ship packages at reduced rates, blaming it for the fiscal woes at USPS. An upcoming Treasury Department report on revamping the debt-riddled USPS is expected to add further tension to that fight.

Business groups have urged the Treasury Department to preserve Amazon’s agreement with the USPS, which they say helps the Postal Service’s finances and prevents the tech giant from striking a deal with private competitors.

Liberal politicians and activists, including Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersFive takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's fiery first debate Ben & Jerry’s co-founders announce effort to help 7 Dem House challengers Dems look to Gillum, Abrams for pathway to victory in tough states MORE (I-Vt.), have also raised concerns about Amazon's impact on the larger economy and the ways it treats its workers.