- The Office of Fair Trading has ruled that News International is guilty of anti-competitive behaviour over price cuts on the Times.
The OFT launched an investigation after The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian and The Independent lodged complaints against The Times.
John Bridgeman, director general of the OFT, concluded that News International had deliberately made a loss on The Times between June 1996 and January 1998 in a bid to affect competition in the national daily newspaper market. During this period the paper was sold for 10 pence, a reduction of more than two thirds of its normal price.
Leslie Hinton, the chief executive of News International, has apparently confirmed that the company will not cut the price of The Times any further in current trading conditions. Bridgeman states that News International "will have to provide us with a detailed explanation and financial information" if that situation changes.