Biden’s inflation has gone to an insane level that even Amazon is placing a 5% “fuel and inflation surcharge” on products sold through the platform.
On Wednesday, the online shopping giant announced that it will add fuel and inflation surcharge to the fees it charges third-party merchants that use the e-commerce giant’s fulfillment services to counteract rising costs.
The Seattle-based company also said on its website that the added fees, which take effect April 28, are “subject to change” and will apply to both apparel and non-apparel items.
The latest fee hike follows one announced in November and went into effect in January. Amazon didn’t immediately respond to a request for further details on the recent move. But in a notice sent to sellers Wednesday, the company said its costs had gone up since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic due to increases in hourly wages, the hiring of workers and construction of more warehouses.
It said it had absorbed costs whenever possible, and only increased fees to address permanent costs and to be competitive with other providers. Amazon competitors FedEx and UPS both have fuel surcharges.
CNN Business reported about the emails sent by Amazon to the sellers:
“In 2022, we expected a return to normalcy as Covid-19 restrictions around the world eased, but fuel and inflation have presented further challenges. It is unclear if these inflationary costs will go up or down, or for how long they will persist.”
“Like many, we have experienced significant cost increases and absorbed them, wherever possible, to reduce the impact on our selling partners. When we did increase fees, we were focused on addressing permanent costs and ensuring our fees were competitive with those charged by other service providers.”
During a CNBC interview with Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, he defended the decision saying that supply chain challenges and inflationary pressures, which he blamed on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, were the key factors that influenced the decision.
“The last thing we ever want to do is have to raise costs for our sellers. Sellers for us are so important and so critical to the business, and in the early part of the pandemic … right or wrong we just absorbed all those costs for sellers, in part because we thought some of those would attenuate as we got to the beginning of this year and some of the impacts of COVID changed. But with the war in Ukraine and all the inflationary pieces that happened thereafter, at a certain point, you can’t keep absorbing all those costs and run a business that’s economic. And so, I think that we’re very aware that sellers have costs as well. They’re very important customers for us, and partners, and we’ll keep looking at how costs evolve and revisit.”
Wire noted that more companies will follow:
Amazon is the latest company to impose new costs on customers amid the inflation crisis. Grocery delivery service Instacart announced it was implementing a gas surcharge in March, and rideshare services Uber and Lyft both announced they would be putting up a similar surcharge to cope with high gas prices around the country.