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Amazon and Penguin continue e-book pricing dispute
30.04.10 | Catherine Neilan
Amazon.com has cut the price of "a number of new hardcover books" published by Penguin to $9.99 (£6.50), in what appears to be another dispute over e-book pricing, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Penguin stopped providing digital editions of new titles to Amazon on 1st April, having failed to reach an agreement over agency pricing, in which the publisher sets the price of the book and the retailer takes a percentage of the amount.
Of the five major US publishers to have opted for agency pricing with Apple, Penguin is the only one not to have reached an agreement with Amazon.
As the e-tailer cannot sell Penguin e-books until that is settled, WSJ said it was "in effect, showing its customers that Amazon is still the place to go for discount pricing".
The paper added: "The low price also serves to put pressure on Penguin, as publishers passionately dislike the steep discounts. Many publishers say a $9.99 price tag on a new hardcover book cheapens the value in the minds of consumers".
The books include Roger Lowenstein's The End of Wall Street, Drew Perry's This is Just Exactly Like You, Olga Grushin's The Line, Anne Lamott's Imperfect Birds, and Stuart Woods' Lucid Intervals.
Both Amazon and Penguin declined to comment.