LG.Philips LCD investigated over possible price fixing

By Matthew Henry and agencies

SEOUL: LCD manufacturer LG.Philips is under investigation by fair trade agencies from Korea and Japan and has also received a subpoena from the US Department of Justice for possible price fixing and anti-competitive behavior in the LCD panel market.

South Korean LG.Philips, the world’s second largest LCD panel-maker, issued a statement yesterday confirming that officials from the Korean Fair Trade Commission visited its Seoul office, while the Japanese Fair Trade Commission issued a notice to the manufacturer’s Tokyo office that the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a subpoena to its offices in San Jose, California.

"LG.Philips LCD takes this matter very seriously and will cooperate fully with regulatory authorities," said the company in a statement.

"While these investigations continue, LG.Philips LCD is committed to running its business as usual, supplying its global customer base with the highest quality products.”

International news reports have suggest the matter relates to possible price fixing of LCD panels on the global market, and have also implicated Samsung’s LCD panel manufacturing business as being under investigation by various fair trade agencies on similar charges.

Bloomberg has reported that LG.Philips shares have dropped as much as 7.6 per cent in the wake of the company’s announcement, with investors concerned the investigation may damage the company’s earnings prospects following two consecutive quarterly losses.

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