U.S. Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against Apple, Publishers Over E-Book Pricing

The U.S. filed an antitrust lawsuit Wednesday against Apple Inc. and the nation’s largest publishers, alleging they conspired to limit competition for the pricing of e-books.

The lawsuit alleges Apple and the major book publishers reached an agreement where retail price competition would cease, retail e-book prices would increase significantly and Apple would be guaranteed a 30% “commission” on each e-book sold. 

A settlement involving some of the publishers is expected to be filed Wednesday, according to a person familiar with the matter. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is expected to discuss “a significant antitrust matter” at a press conference later Wednesday.

Attorney General Eric Holder unveiled the federal suit at a Washington news conference. “As a result of this alleged conspiracy, we believe that consumers paid millions of dollars more for some of the most popular titles,” he said. – WSJ

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