Japan Drops Price Fixing Case Against Apple

Japanis Fair Trade Commission (FTC) ended its year long probe into alleged price fixing by Apple Japan on the iMac and iBook computer models with a slap on the wrist.

According to Reuters, "The FTC said in a statement it thought Apple Japan pressured retailers not to sell its iMac desktop and iBook notebook computers below retail list prices. However, a commission official said no administrative penalty would be imposed and that the investigation was over."

An Apple spokesperson claimed, "We believe our business activities did not breach Japanese laws. We will need to avoid, if there is any, misunderstanding with retailers, but there will be no change in our business."

Todayis announcement comes on the heels of Appleis 4th quarter earnings warning which sent AAPL down 50% last week. See yesterdayis Apple Trader column, Apple Explained: In Steve We Trust for more details.

Appleis stock was trading slightly higher at $24 1/2 on high volume early this morning.