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OFT investigation closes as retailers commit to using 'genuine prices'

UK carpet and furniture stores have agreed to change pricing strategies after a probe from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) into how the heavy discounts seen at such businesses could deceive shoppers.

The investigation from the body is now closed and market-leader Carpetright, SCS, Dreams, Furniture Village and Harveys/Bensons for Beds have now all made changes to their strategies and committed to using genuine prices but did not admit liability.

Last summer the watchdog said retailers had artificially inflated reference prices on discounts that were not genuine.

In a brief stock exchange statement, Carpetright said: "We are pleased the OFT has publicly welcomed Carpetright's commitment to open and transparent pricing.

"When customers visit Carpetright they can be confident of getting good quality products at a competitive price, which is supported by our price promise."

The OFT found that the chains had advertised some normal retail prices as "discounted" prices to shoppers.

Carpetright shares were down slightly earlier, but now stand 1.18% higher at 602p.

Source : Giles Gwinnett - Proactive Investors

21 March 2014
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