Expert legal advice from the competition lawyers

Hand sanitiser pricing under regulatory review

First published by Matt on July 16, 2020 in the following categories: Consumer Law Industry Latest Price Fixing Price Hikes Pricing and tagged with | | | |

hand sanitiser pricing

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been looking into hand sanitiser pricing over concerns that important competition laws may be being breached.

Last month, the CMA announced that they were looking into the matter that is undoubtedly tied to how the use of such products has changed during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Although the investigation only started last month, and no assumptions are being made, there have been some significant changes and developments so far.

Clearly, given how the markets for such products has changed over the last few months, this is an important matter that needs to be looked into.

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UK roofing materials sector: updates expected soon

First published by Matt on June 03, 2020 in the following categories: Cartels Industry Market Sharing Price Fixing Pricing Selling Restrictions and tagged with | | | | | | |

UK roofing materials sector

The investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) that’s looking into the UK roofing materials sector remains ongoing.

We understand that more news could be issued at the end of June in-line with the current timetable in place from the CMA. So far, we have seen extensive investigations carried out over the last few years, and a formal Statement of Objections issued last year.

With an alleged cartel in place that reportedly makes up for 90% of the lead rolling market in the UK, this is a significant investigation.

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Ofwat price determinations case

First published by Matt on May 06, 2020 in the following categories: Consumer Law Industry Investigations Latest Pricing and tagged with | | | | |

Ofwat price determinations case

The Ofwat price determinations case follows a referral by four major water companies in the UK in relation to price controls that are set to go into effect for the next five years.

Price controls for the water market are put in place for the protection of the consumer. They can ensure that water is affordable and available to all, but the controls must account for the fact that private companies are providing water services and competing in the market.

If new price controls are rejected by any of the UK water companies, the matter can be referred to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA can make its own separate determination as a regulator with similar duties to Ofwat.

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Retail banking market investigation: the latest

First published by Matt on April 01, 2020 in the following categories: Banking Sector Industry Latest and tagged with | | |

The have been some developments lately in the retail banking market investigation that’s being conducted by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Since 2016, the CMA has been looking into the supply of personal and current accounts to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The investigations were launched off the back of concerns that there was a lack of effective competition in the sector, arising from two studies prior conducted by the CMA. Working with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), measures have been taken to improve competition in this multi-billion-pound sector.

Here’s the latest.

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Latest in the care homes consumer protection investigation

First published by Matt on February 26, 2020 in the following categories: Care Homes Latest and tagged with | |

retirement homes investigation

There has been some big developments in the care homes consumer protection investigation that’s being conducted by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

This is an important case that has been ongoing since 2017, and there have been several key steps taken to improve the sector on the whole. Consumer law is hugely important when it comes to the care for our elderly and vulnerable and matters in the case have further developed.

As a result of failures to adhere to important changes brought about by the CMA, court action has been launched.

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Berkshire residential estate agents competition case

First published by Matt on February 12, 2020 in the following categories: Cartels Latest Price Fixing Price Hikes Pricing and tagged with | | | | |

estate agents guilty of price fixing

Here’s the latest news involving the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) investigation into alleged competition infringements involving Berkshire residential estate agents.

The investigation was launched in early 2018 on the basis that the CMA suspected that there may be infringements of important competition law. In June last year, the CMA issued a formal statement of objections to four estate agents with allegations of breaches, and a settlement was reached with two agents in October. More fines were then issued at the end of last year.

In the often-volatile property market, competition law breaches that leave buyers and sellers paying more simply cannot go unpunished.

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CMA issue substantial Fender competition breach fine

First published by Matt on January 30, 2020 in the following categories: Price Fixing Price Hikes Pricing Selling Restrictions and tagged with | | |

musical instruments investigation

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has issued a substantial Fender competition breach fine in the sum of £4.5m.

The fine has been issued almost two years after an investigation into the prominent guitar maker was opened. In its ruling, the CMA has confirmed that Fender has admitted to breaking competition law by restricting prices for UK retailers. The fine that has been issued is therefore subject to the CMA’s leniency and cooperation protocols, which can see penalties reduced.

This is a key ruling given the size of this growing market and the fact that Fender is one of the major players in the sector.

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Roll-over contracts for online gaming investigation

First published by Matt on January 15, 2020 in the following categories: Consumer Law Industry Investigations and tagged with | | | |

Online Gaming

Last April, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) initiated an investigation into roll-over contracts for online gaming.

The online gaming sector has grown exponentially in recent years, with at least one console a staple in most modern houses these days, I would assume. The monetisation of online gaming has led to more purchase options for the consumer, so the costs of being involved in online gaming is something that should be carefully considered.

In the same way that the CMA has been looking into contract factors for things like broadband and telecommunications, they’re also keen to know if the online gaming sector is being fair. As this is just the initial investigation stage, no assumptions are being made as to whether important laws are being broken or not.

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Latest in the funeral directors market investigation

First published by Matt on January 02, 2020 in the following categories: Industry Investigations and tagged with | | |

cma auction investigation

The funeral directors market investigation that’s being conducted by the CMA (Competition and Markets Authority) remains ongoing.

In terms of the latest happenings and goings on, here’s a brief update based on information from the CMA about the progress of their important work in this sector.

It goes without saying that this is another important investigation for the competition regulator. People are in obvious need of funeral and crematorium services, and the need for such services will likely increase with population growth.

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The musical instruments and equipment investigation

First published by Matt on December 20, 2019 in the following categories: Industry Investigations Latest and tagged with | | |

guitar music MJ own

The musical instruments and equipment investigation is a matter that’s currently being conducted by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The market for musical equipment and instruments has grown exponentially in recent decades. There’s now far greater access to instruments at more affordable prices, and the materials available online for people to learn to play are vast. So many youngsters want to be in bands, and it’s great that there’s such an appetite for musical creativity.

But the CMA has been looking into another side of the sector, and it’s one where foul play is being suspected.

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