Alphabet's Google said today it believes the complaint from the US Department of Justice accusing the company of abusing its dominance in digital advertising is "without merit".

The company also added it will "defend itself vigorously".

The US government yesterday said Google should be forced to sell its ad manager suite, tackling a business that generated about 12% of Google's revenue in 2021 while also playing a vital role in the search engine and cloud company's overall sales.

Google depends on its advertising business for about 80% of its revenue.

It said the US government was "doubling down on a flawed argument that would slow innovation, raise advertising fees and make it harder for thousands of small businesses and publishers to grow."

The US federal government has said its Big Tech investigations and lawsuits are aimed at leveling the playing field for smaller rivals who are up against a group of powerful companies that include Amazon, Facebook-owner Meta Platforms and Apple.

"In contrast with prior cases/investigations against Google's ad tech biz, we view the DOJ complaint as fairly substantive and preempting some potential Google lines of defense," said Wells Fargo analyst Brian Fitzgerald.