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Amazon hikes Prime membership to $99

Published: Monday, March 17, 2014 11:24 a.m. CDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon said Thursday that it is raising the price of Prime to $99 a year as it seeks to offset rising costs to ship products to customers. It’s the first price hike since Amazon rolled out the service in 2005.

Cowen & Co. analyst John Blackledge, who estimates there are about 23 million U.S. prime members.

Investors, who along with analysts have been split on whether heavy investment at the expense of profit is the best strategy for Amazon, kept shares nearly flat on Thursday. The stock is down 7 percent since the beginning of the year.

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