Apple's $450M E-Book Settlement Gets Final Nod from Court - Analyst Blog

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The long pending e-book price-fixing case against Apple Inc. ( AAPL ) may wind down soon given that a U.S. District Judge approved the final settlement amount of $450 million that the company offered to pay.

Last week, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote approved Apple's $450 million settlement ($400 million to consumers and $50 million to lawyers) provided that the appeals court also finds Apple guilty as charged. The company agreed to pay the amount in June this year, when its opponents sought a fine of up to $840 million.

In Jun 2013, Judge Cote ruled that the iPhone maker had conspired with five U.S. publishers to raise e-book prices. Though the accused publishers - Hachette Book Group, News Corp.'s ( NWS ) HarperCollins, Holtzbrinck Publishers, Pearson's Penguin Group and CBS Corp's ( CBS ) Simon & Schuster Inc. - settled with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Apple challenged the verdict in appeals court.

 If the appeals court sends the case back to Judge Cote for reconsideration or starts a new trial, then Apple shall only be liable to pay $50 million to consumers plus $20 million to lawyers instead of the offered $450 million. Reportedly, the verdict will be announced after Dec 15 and the recipients will be notified via email about the settlement amount.

The settlement process shows the court's relentless effort to fast track the complicated case to offer quick resolutions to aggrieved parties in the long-pending case.   

Apple is also facing a number of other legal headwinds, including pending patent infringement lawsuits. The company continues to deny any wrong doing in the case and awaits the appeals court's verdict.

Apple currently has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Other stock with Zacks Rank #1 iinclude Carbonite, Inc. ( CARB ).

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This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: AAPL

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