Google Can Side-Step Trump by Taking a Cue From Amazon’s Playbook
(Bloomberg) -- Alphabet Inc.’s Google could probably use some advice from Jeff Bezos right now.
Donald Trump’s Tuesday morning tweets -- accusing Google of rigging results about him -- seem to place the search engine at the top of the president’s most wanted list, a position familiar to Amazon.com Inc. and its chief executive officer. Google responded that its search feature “is not used to set a political agenda” and doesn’t bias results toward any political ideology. The company’s shares closed down 0.8 percent.
The tech giant could consider taking a page from Bezos’s book, or more likely his Kindle, and let the matter drop. In late March, Amazon saw as much as $53 billion erased from its market value in one day after Trump was said to be “obsessed” with regulating the e-commerce company. Amazon kept quiet, recovered its losses within a month and has traded higher ever since.
To be sure, Google may not be as popular with consumers as Amazon, and any scrutiny from the president could weigh on its sentiment on Wall Street. Trump on Tuesday warned that Google -- along with Facebook.com Inc. and Twitter Inc. -- “better be careful” as the companies “are treading on very, very troubled territory.” Google is due to face lawmakers at a hearing on Russian election meddling on Sept. 5.
©2018 Bloomberg L.P.