The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled more than 500 points on the first trading day of April — and all of the other major indexes followed suit — after President Donald Trump took to Twitter yet again to take aim at Amazon.
As of 12:30 p.m. ET, the Nasdaq was in the red nearly 3 percent to 6,876, and the S&P 500 had shed 2.4 percent to 2,578.
Trump on Monday again criticized the e-giant’s tax treatment as well as its use of the United States Postal Service, tweeting: “Only fools, or worse, are saying that our money losing Post Office makes money with Amazon. THEY LOSE A FORTUNE, and this will be changed. Also, our fully tax paying retailers are closing stores all over the country…not a level playing field!”
As has often been the case, a negative tweet by Trump about Amazon — one of the biggest market drivers — sends the firm’s shares tumbling and sometimes the rest of the market in tandem.
Trump’s latest anti-Amazon message followed several tweets over the weekend, also targeting the retailer and CEO Jeff Bezos’ ownership of The Washington Post.
Those attacks came on the heels of a Twitter message from the president on Thursday in which he seemed to lend credence to a report suggesting he would try to “go after” the firm using tax or antitrust laws.
“I have stated my concerns with Amazon long before the Election. 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!” he wrote on the social media platform on Thursday.
That tweet was enough to send Amazon shares down 7 percent, or $50 billion, in early-morning trading last week.
Trump’s issues with Amazon were well-documented last year; he took to Twitter several times to criticize the company’s tax treatment and use of the USPS.
Nevertheless, it’s not just Amazon that’s playing a significant role in the tough trading day. Fears of a trade war with China are also weighing on Wall Street this week. Beijing on Monday said it would impose tariffs on $3 billion of U.S. imports in response to Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs, announced last month. China’s sanctions would apply to 128 products, including fruit, pork and other meats, as well as steel pipes.