What a Trump presidency could mean for Amazon.com

It's been just over a week since voters in the U.S. went to the polls and elected Donald Trump as their next president. That's caused some volatility in the stock market, which has since stabilized, even making some gains since.

But some investors are concerned about how some individual companies, including Amazon.com(NASDAQ: AMZN), will fare under President Trump. So, let's take a look at what Trump has said about Amazon specifically, what policies could affect the company, and why Amazon ultimately stands on its own.

Creating problems

Speaking back in February at a campaign rally, Trump spoke to supporters about Amazon and its CEO Jeff Bezos, saying:

I have respect for Jeff Bezos, but he bought The Washington Post to have political influence, and I gotta tell you, we have a different country than we used to have. He owns Amazon. He wants political influence so that Amazon will benefit from it. That's not right. And believe me, if I become president, oh, do they have problems. They're going to have such problems.

Trump says Bezos used his purchase of the newspaper (which is unprofitable) to help keep more taxes away from Amazon. It's worth mentioning here that The Washington Post isn't a part of Amazon in any way. Bezos purchased the company personally, so forging the two together and making the accusation that one is helping the other pay lower taxes is inaccurate. Amazon paid $273 million in income taxes in 2015.

Trump might have talked a lot about causing problems for Amazon when it comes to taxes, but it's not very likely to play out that way.

RELATED: If you're a fan of Amazon, here are some necessary shopping hacks:

14 Amazon shopping hacks
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14 Amazon shopping hacks

1. Cash in Those Gift Cards

You probably have Visa or MasterCard gift cards laying around with balances too low to shop with. Instead of leaving them in a drawer, transfer the balances (50 cents or above) to Amazon. It’s a wee bit tricky, but here’s how to do it: Proceed as if you were buying an Amazon gift card (or click on “Reload Your Balance”), choose “enter amount” instead of clicking on one of the set quantity boxes, and enter the gift card account number as the payment method. Bingo — you now have Amazon credit to shop with.

Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

3. Don’t Ignore Warehouse Deals …

If you turn up your nose at the open-box and pre-owned items in Amazon’s Warehouse Deals section, you may be missing out on a great bargain. The discounts can be substantial, and you have 30 days to decide whether what you’ve received is a keeper.

(Sandia/Science Source via Getty Images)

4. … or Amazon’s Outlet

The Outlet is kind of like the clearance rack in your favorite store. It’s hit or miss, but these are items that Amazon is trying to clear out, so the discounts can be great (from 20% to 80%).

5. Enroll in Prime Student

If you’re in school, enjoy free two-day shipping for six months through the Prime Student program. If you want all the other benefits that come with Prime, you can then snag a Prime membership for 50% off after a six-month trial period.

(PeopleImages.com via Getty Images)

6. Give to Charity

Why not give back while you shop? Courtesy of AmazonSmile, 0.5% of eligible Amazon Prime purchases can be donated to the participating charity or school of your choice.

(Peter Dazeley via Getty Images)

7. Fill ‘Er Up

If you are not a Prime member, sometimes it’s a challenge to get your order to that $35 free shipping threshold without going way over. The Filler Item finder provides low-cost suggestions to help you get there.

(Emmanuel Faure via Getty Images)

8. Hold Onto Damaged Merchandise

If something you’ve ordered arrives in less-than-perfect condition, Amazon will replace it through their Online Returns Center and may not require you to send it back, especially if it’s inexpensive. And if the item is salvageable, you’ve scored! Let’s say you receive a bottle of household cleaner with a faulty pump. You can just hang on to it and switch the pump once you’ve finished the replacement.

(Jan Stromme via Getty Images)

9. Join Amazon Family 

Expecting moms and parents who are also Amazon Prime members can get 20% off Subscribe & Save diapers with the Amazon Family program. There’s also a 15% discount on all baby registry gifts within 60 days of your due date.

(monkeybusinessimages via Getty Images)

10. Take Advantage of Late Deliveries

You usually get your packages on time with your Prime Membership, but if there’s a time that you don’t, let them know. It’s very likely they will offer you something, like a credit to your account or an extension of your Prime membership.

(Reza Estakhrian via Getty Images)

11. Try Subscribe & Save

Subscribe & Save users can receive up to 15% off their items and free shipping. I use Subscribe & Save for my toilet paper, paper towels and a few different vitamins, and the price is definitely right. Before subscribing, do your homework and compare prices with your price club and grocery/drug stores. I like how you can specify when you want items to ship, so your essentials arrive right when you need them. One less thing to think about!

(AsiaPix via Getty Images)

12. Use Promo Codes & Coupons

Amazon does promo codes and coupons too. If you’re shopping for groceries on Amazon, be on the lookout for coupons and codes that can be applied to your purchase. They are typically on the main product page, and once you’ve clicked on them, they will appear in your cart.

(Jill Fromer via Getty Images)

13. Save an Extra 5%

You may not feel like you need another credit card — and you may not — but with the Amazon Store Card, Prime Members can get 5% back on all purchases. Like other store cards, the annual percentage rate (APR) is not fabulous, so if you go for this card, plan to pay it off every month. Otherwise, the 5% reward will be meaningless.

(Not sure whether you can qualify for the credit card? You can view a free snapshot of your credit report, updated every two weeks, on Credit.com.)

(Nicholas Rigg via Getty Images)

14. Watch for Lower Prices

You may have noticed that Amazon has pretty fluid pricing. If you see that something you purchased sold by Amazon LLC has dropped in price, Amazon will usually honor the lower price by giving you a credit or gift card. Live chat seems to be a reliable way to get this done. A good way to keep track of Amazon pricing in general is with CamelCamelCamel price tracker.

(Blend Images - Peter Dressel via Getty Images)


Antitrust accusations

President-elect Trump has also accused Amazon of violating antitrust laws. He said back in May that Bezos is worried because:

He thinks I would go after him for antitrust because he's got a huge antitrust problem. Amazon is controlling so much of what they're doing ... What he's got is a monopoly and he wants to make sure I don't get in.

The accusation that Amazon is a monopoly isn't a new one. An article in the New Republicargued as much back in 2014. But there's been plenty of pushback on this idea as well, including articles by major news sources here, here, and here.

An article from New York Magazine said at the time:

The evidence for this is thin. Amazon is surely the biggest player in e-commerce, with about $75 billion in revenue last year. But that comes out of a $263 billion market, and the National Retail Federation estimates that Amazon makes up only about 15 percent of total e-commerce sales.

The article went on to mention how Amazon is facing increased online sales pressure from brick-and-mortar stores.

Amazon has certainly grown since 2014, but it's unlikely the current antitrust laws could be applied to the company. As David Goldman wrote in a CNNMoney article a few months ago:

According to the Sherman Antitrust Act, a judge would need to find that Amazon is a monopoly that abuses its power and harms consumers as a result. That's a high bar. Amazon is hardly the largest retailer. Its sales are about a fifth of Walmart's.

This could actually help Amazon

As I mentioned in different article about Trump's potential impact on another tech giant, there could actually be a benefit for Amazon under a Trump presidency.

The president-elect has said he would be open to offering American companies a 10% tax rate for repatriated money. Companies often leave their foreign profits in other countries because it costs them a hefty 35% tax fee if they bring it back into the U.S.

But Trump has said he wants to make it easy to bring those profits back: "We'll bring it back, and it'll be taxed only at the rate of 10% instead of 35%. And who would bring it back at 35%? Obviously nobody, because nobody's doing it."

Amazon doesn't keep as much of its profits in other countries as others do, but it could still benefit from a lower repatriation rate to bring back the $5.8 billion the company held in foreign subsidiaries as of the end of 2015.

Amazon stands on its own

As expected with any unforeseen outcome, there have been some short-term jitters following Trump's election, and Amazon's stock price is currently down over 5% since election day. It would be slightly naive to assume Trump could have zero impact on Amazon, but it's more likely than not that the company will continue to operate as usual.

Amazon pays taxes, and Trump's correlation between The Washington Post and Amazon doesn't exactly hold up, nor is it likely for the government to go after (or win) any type of antitrust litigation against Amazon. If anything, the company might benefit from a Trump presidency if the repatriation rate drops some time over the next four years.

While it's easy to get caught up in what's happening right now, investors should remember that the fundamentals of Amazon's business haven't changed over the past week -- and that's reason enough to remain calm.

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