Amazon told investors on Thursday that it has suspended more than 6,000 seller accounts on its platform from around the world for price gouging on essential items during the pandemic.
In his annual letter to shareholders, Bezos said the company has also removed more than 500,000 listings from Amazon’s website for price gouging. And, he said, Amazon has ramped up its reporting of price gougers to the authorities.
"To accelerate our response to price-gouging incidents, we created a special communication channel for state attorneys general to quickly and easily escalate consumer complaints to us,” Bezos wrote.
Some context: In a blog post last month, Amazon said it’s suspended 3,900 sellers on its US website alone.
But Amazon has battled rising criticism from policymakers over the availability of critical goods such as hand sanitizer and toilet paper as more people shop for essentials from home.
The company received probing letters in March from US lawmakers — and attorneys general representing nearly three dozen states and the District of Columbia. The attorneys general in particular accused Amazon of failing to prevent price gouging, despite efforts to apply automated and manual reviews of its platform.