Hasbro fined for toy price fixing

US toy firm Hasbro has been fined £4.95m ($7.7m) by the Office of Fair Trading for forcing distributors to fix toy and game prices in the UK.

UK toy sales are worth £1.7bn a year, and Hasbro toys such as Action Man, Harry Potter merchandise, Transformers, Star War dolls and Monopoly games account for nearly a fifth of the total market.

The fine is the largest the OFT has handed out for anti-competitive behaviour, while most of the distributors seem to have escaped without any fine.

The OFT said this was because Hasbro would have refused to sell to them had they refused to accept the company's ban on dropping prices below the official price list.

However, the investigation into Argos and Littlewoods has not been completed yet.

In a statement, Hasbro said it was "surprised and disappointed" by the "disproportionate" level of the fine, and said it is planning to appeal.

News source: BBC

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