OFT to scrutinise ebook pricing Ebook price probe after 'significant complaints'

02 February 2011

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The Office of Fair Trading has launched an investigation into the price of ebooks.

The investigation was opened yesterday, the OFT said, following ‘a significant number of complaints’, however, it declined to put a figure on the numbers received.

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The ebook pricing investigation will examine whether the arrangements that ‘certain publishers have in place with some retailers for the sale of e-books’ may be in breach of competition law, the OFT said.

The Competition Act 1988 prohibits agreements, practices and conduct that may have a damaging effect on competition in the UK.

If the investigation concludes that breaches have occurred, the OFT has the potential to impose fines of up to 10% of the global income on the companies concerned.

The OFT would not reveal how long the ebook pricing investigation was expected to take.

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