It's not the first allegation of this nature to hit the companies, and it may not be the last.
The consumer electronics industry, like so many others, is frequently embroiled in law suits. The latest though, is of particular interest. It's not a business to business suit as is typical, but an instance of a state taking the companies to court.
Andrew Cuomo, the New York State Attorney General, filed suit against Hitachi, LG, Samsung and Sharp on Friday over allegations of price fixing. "Our investigation shows that an illegal cartel eliminated competition in the marketplace for LCD screens, made its own secret decisions to boost prices, and then took steps to make those high prices stick," he explained.
Cuomo is looking for some cash out of the group to help make up for the thousands of monitors bought by the state in the last ten years, when this arrangement was apparently taking place.
This isn't the first time the companies have been brought up on price fixing charges, and several of them have pleaded guilty in the past.
Source: Market Watch