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Amazon lowers its free shipping threshold to counter Walmart

Isn't competition grand?
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Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images

When Walmart ditched its Amazon Prime-style subscriptions and offered free two-day shipping for all orders over $35, it was a shot across the bow -- we might not compete directly, but we can still undercut you. Well, Amazon is responding in kind. Just a year after it hiked its free shipping minimum to $49, the online shopping giant has lowered that threshold back to $35. That won't deliver your goods any sooner (you still need Prime for that), but it could tip the balance if you're more interested in avoiding fees than getting your order in a hurry.

Amazon likely raised the minimum last year in response to rapidly rising logistics costs. Simply put, it couldn't afford to hand out gratis shipping as freely as it had in the past. Either Amazon got those costs in check, or it's willing to take a financial hit to prevent Walmart from luring away customers. No matter what, it's clear that the fierce competition between internet stores is helping your bank account.

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