Amazon, Publishers Get Preliminary Win in E-Book Antitrust Case

Amazon.com Inc. and the five largest US publishing houses should be free of antitrust litigation on behalf of e-book consumers who claim their “most favored nation”-style agreements have driven up prices across the board, a federal magistrate in Manhattan said.

Magistrate Judge Valerie Figueredo recommended dismissing the proposed class action, which in addition to Amazon targets Hachette Book Group Inc., HarperCollins Publishers LLC, Macmillan Publishing Group LLC, Penguin Random House LLC, and Simon & Schuster Inc.

Figueredo called claims of a price-fixing conspiracy among Amazon and the publishers implausible. The lawsuit shows the MFN agreements were in each publisher’s interest, …

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