Is it too late to halt the Harry discounts?

<p>One can argue that discounting expands the market. Certainly, the ending in 1995 of the Net Book Agreement has stimulated record-breaking sales of bestselling hardbacks; sales of the bestselling paperbacks, too, have gone up. Sales channels have multiplied, with the arrival of supermarkets and the internet as significant booksellers. Yet the book market overall has not shown an increase to match these developments. The effect of price cutting is largely to alter the distribution of revenues. Discounted frontlist bestsellers get more sales, while midlist titles get fewer; retailers with t...

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