Ama­zon an­titrust probe

Los Angeles Times - - BUSINESS BEAT -

The Euro­pean Union has launched an an­titrust in­ves­ti­ga­tion into on­line re­tailer Ama­ Inc. over its dis­tri­bu­tion of e-books.

The Euro­pean Com­mis­sion said Thurs­day that it would in­ves­ti­gate cer­tain clauses in Ama­zon’s con­tracts with pub­lish­ers, in­clud­ing a re­quire­ment for pub­lish­ers to in­form the com­pany about ar­range­ments it has with Ama­zon com­peti­tors.

If the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion finds that Ama­zon’s ar­range­ments limit com­pe­ti­tion and re­duce con­sumer choice, then it could be vi­o­lat­ing an­titrust rules in Europe that pro­hibit com­pa­nies from abus­ing their dom­i­nant mar­ket po­si­tion.

Ama­zon said it was con­fi­dent that its agree­ments with pub­lish­ers were legal.

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