Connecticut’s top law enforcement officer said Wednesday that he was conducting an antitrust investigation into how Amazon runs its e-book business.
Connecticut Attorney General William Tong said in a statement that the state has “an active and ongoing antitrust investigation into Amazon regarding potentially anti-competitive terms” in the company’s electronic book distribution agreements with some publishers.
The investigation is the latest antitrust investigation against Amazon that has been made public. Officials in California and Washington have examined how the company handles the independent vendors that use its marketplace. The Federal Trade Commission also has its own investigation into the company, which critics say has become a dominant online retailer by defeating smaller competitors.
An Amazon spokesman declined to comment. The investigation was previously reported by the Wall Street Journal.
Amazon started selling books in the 1990s. The company introduced its Kindle e-books reader in 2007. The company quickly caught the attention of regulators. In 2012, the Justice Department sued Apple, saying it had partnered with major publishers to increase the price of e-books above the $ 9.99 Amazon charged.
Connecticut was among the states that filed their own lawsuit against Apple. Mr Tong, a Democrat, said in his statement that his office “continues to aggressively monitor this market to protect fair competition for consumers, authors and other e-book retailers”.