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Connecticut AG probing Amazon’s e-book business

Amazon’s lucrative e-books business is drawing scrutiny from law enforcement.

Connecticut is investigating the e-tail giant for potential anti-competitive behavior in its Kindle business, the state’s attorney general William Tong said this week, with a focus on the distribution agreements it has with certain publishers.

Amazon enjoys a dominant market share in the digital book business despite counting Barnes & Noble and Google as its rivals.

The Nutmeg State requested documents from Amazon regarding its deals with the country’s largest book publishers back in 2019, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Tong said his office has previously taken action against companies such as Apple and a number of e-book publishers to protect competition in that market and will continue to monitor it aggressively.

It is the latest probe of potentially anti-competitive behavior by Amazon in recent months. The company is also under investigation by the attorneys general in New York, California and Washington state and the Federal Trade Commission.

A scathing antitrust report in October from the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee’s antitrust panel published details of what it said was Amazon’s anticompetitive behavior and suggested barring the company from operating its online marketplace, in which it also competes.

Amazon had pushed back against the report before it was released, saying that market interventions “would kill off independent retailers and punish consumers by forcing small businesses out of popular online stores, raising prices and reducing consumer choice.”

An Amazon spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

With Post wires.

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