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Amazon has now suspended 6,000+ sellers after they have been found price gouging essential items on Amazon.
Some of these items are even medical supplies like N95 masks which have been selling for prices like $485 for a pack of 20, per Reddit. (Personally, I think those accounts should be shut down for good and not just suspended for that type of gouging.)
In addition to the suspension of the 6,000 sellers, Amazon has also removed more than 500,000 listings from its website for price gouging.
To help combat the price gouging in the future, Amazon created a special communication channel for state attorney generals to quickly escalate consumer complaints to Amazon and turned over information about sellers they suspected engaged in price gouging of products related to COVID-19 to 42 states.
This has come after Amazon’s automated and manual review process for price gouging apparently failed and drew heavy criticism from officials in different states.
3/23/20 Original post:
If you’ve been shopping for items like hand sanitizer or Lysol wipes on Amazon over the past couple of weeks you may have seen some prices that shocked you. In some cases you may have seen the price for soap and other essentials at around two or three times the normal price or even much higher!
Not that it is super surprising but there are people out there who will try to take advantage of others even in a time of crisis.
These price gougers have increased the prices on many essential items and have had quite a large presence on Amazon over the past couple of weeks.
In fact, Amazon states that they have removed more than half a million listings that they believed were the product of price gouging. They have also suspended approximately 4,000 accounts in the US for sellers violating the terms and conditions related to pricing.
Amazon is actively monitoring sellers to ensure that they are not price gouging and they stated that they have reached out to state attorney generals to help monitor the situation
“We are also proactively sharing information with state attorneys general and federal regulators about sellers we suspect have engaged in egregious price gouging of products related to the Covid-19 crisis,” Amazon’s statement reads.
People who do this are truly the worst and it is encouraging to see Amazon crack down on these people. I’d encourage everybody out there to consider sharing your resources if you have a surplus because there are lots of people out there living in a state of fear because of a lack of essentials.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.