Market News

President Trump Takes Aim at Digital Tech Giants From Google to Twitter

U.S. President Donald Trump is accusing Alphabet Inc.’s Google (GOOGL), Facebook Inc. (FB), Twitter Inc. (TWTR) and Instagram of being involved in an “illegal situation”.

“The Radical Left is in total command & control of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google,” Trump said in a Twitter post. “The Administration is working to remedy this illegal situation.”

Trump’s comment was triggered by a video showing part of a speech decrying tech censorship by Michelle Markin, a conservative commentator who has been criticised for backing white nationalist activists and who has previously questioned the number of Holocaust victims.

The tweets come amid a report by the Wall Street Journal that the U.S. Justice Department is drafting a lawsuit against Google, claiming that the internet giant is violating antitrust laws. The Justice Department has been investigating Google’s dominant standing for nearly a decade examining whether the company is thwarting competition in the digital advertising market.

If the lawsuit against Google is successful, it would represent the most significant action against the company by U.S. enforcers. In the EU, Google has been fined billions of dollars for abusing its dominance and harming competition.

Furthermore, state attorney generals are also investigating the company. The Wall Street Journal reported earlier that Google will likely be sued by the states and the Justice Department.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is heading a group of 51 attorneys general, said Thursday, that states are on a “good path” to completing the investigation soon.

Google said in a statement that it’s engaging “with the ongoing investigations led by the Department of Justice and Attorney General Paxton” and it’s focused on “providing services that help consumers, support thousands of businesses, and enable increased choice and competition.”

Looking at the digital giants’ ratings, TipRanks data shows that the consensus of Wall Street analysts view both Alphabet’s Google and Facebook as a Strong Buy. Alphabet’s $1,488.09 average price target implies 8.4% upside potential in the coming year, while Facebook’s $236.81 average price target means shares are projected to gain 12% in the next 12 months.

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