Apr 02 2012
According to Reuters, The Justice Department could reach a settlement in the next few weeks with Apple Inc and some of the major publishers accused of colluding to push up electronic book prices.
While negotiations are still fluid, the settlement is expected to eliminate Apple's so-called "most favored nation" status, which had prevented the publishers from selling lower-priced e-books through rival retailers. Such a move would benefit Amazon, which had been the leading bargain e-book retailer with its Kindle reader who will once again be able to price some e-books below cost, to draw in shoppers - which is estimated to increase Amazon's revenues by over $1 billion in 2012.
While agency pricing itself is legal, the Justice Department believes that publishers may have colluded to implement it with e-book retailers. In its request to dismiss the private lawsuit, Apple said it individually negotiated separate vertical agreements with each of the publishers and it insisted on agency pricing because it had "no desire to incur the losses that would flow from retailing in such an environment."
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