Ford joins Federal Trade Commission and 16 other states in suit against Amazon

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Nevada Attorney General Aaron D. Ford has joined 16 of his colleagues and the Federal Trade Commission in a lawsuit against Amazon alleging that the online retail and technology company is a monopolist that has unlawfully maintained its monopoly power through a set of interlocking anticompetitive and unfair strategies. 

“Amazon is a mammoth corporation and like most of my constituents, I am also an Amazon customer. There is nothing inherently wrong with being a large company, but it is wrong to use your size and dominance to quash both current and potential competitors,” Ford said in a Tuesday press release. “Competition is vital to our economy and a key element in the production of quality goods and services, which Nevada consumers expect and deserve. However, Amazon's conduct has negatively impacted numerous businesses and their consumers, thereby thwarting its competition.”

According to state and federal enforcers, Amazon’s actions allow it to stop rivals and sellers from lowering prices; degrade quality for shoppers; overcharge sellers; stifle innovation; and prevent rivals from fairly competing against Amazon.  

The “complaint lays out how Amazon has used a set of punitive and coercive tactics to unlawfully maintain its monopolies. The complaint sets forth detailed allegations noting how Amazon is now exploiting its monopoly power to enrich itself while raising prices and degrading service for the tens of millions of American families who shop on its platform and the hundreds of thousands of businesses that rely on Amazon to reach them,” said FTC Chair Lina M. Khan.

The FTC and states allege Amazon’s anticompetitive conduct occurs in two markets — the online superstore market that serves shoppers and the market for online marketplace services purchased by sellers.

Tuesday morning, the FTC voted 3-0 to file the action for a permanent injunction and other equitable relief in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington.  In joining the lawsuit, AG Ford joins the FTC and the attorneys general of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Wisconsin.


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