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Amazon raises free shipping minimum for most orders to $49

Amazon boxes are seen stacked for delivery in the Manhattan borough of New York City, January 29, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar (Reuters)

(Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc has raised its free-shipping threshold for orders from non-Prime customers to $49 from $35 in the United States. Orders of books worth $25 or more will, however, be eligible for free shipping, according to the shopping website. (http://amzn.to/Jl3EAc) Amazon has been spending on rolling out several new services for members of its $99-a-year Prime loyalty program, including one-hour delivery and original TV programming, to attract customers in a highly competitive online shopping market. The company's shipping costs rose more than 18 percent to $11.5 billion last year. The online retailer is also quietly inviting drivers for its new "on-demand" delivery service to handle its standard packages as it looks to speed up delivery times and reduce costs. (Reporting by Kshitiz Goliya in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)