OFT closes investigation into Bensons for Beds, Furniture Village, Homestyle Furnishings, Carpetright & Dreams following pricing commitment

Furniture and carpet retailers, Dreams, Carpetright, Bensons for Beds, Furniture Village and Homestyle Furnishings have committed to changing their reference pricing practices, following an investigation by the Office of Fair Trading.

The five retailers will now use genuine reference pricing, based on prices from across he sector, when advertising price drops to customers.

The investigation was opened to look into whether the prices advertised in price advantage savings offers were genuine or if some discount prices were actually the normal retail price.

Gaucho Rasmussen, OFT director of Goods and Consumer Group, said: "Retailers advertise bargains and discounts by referring to a previous or future higher price. It's a powerful marketing tool which, when used properly, provides a helpful and easy way to demonstrate to shoppers the value of discounts and savings.

"We are therefore pleased that these retailers have confirmed their commitment to using genuine prices."

Now the Competiton and Markets Authority will continue to monitor the pricing and will check that businesses are complying with the agreement when it takes over as regulator of the sector from the OFT on 1 April.

Lord Harris, executive chairman at Carpetright, said: "We are pleased the OFT has publicly welcomed Carpetright's commitment to open and transparent pricing. When customers visit Carpetright they can be confident of getting good quality products at a competitive price, which is supported by our price promise."

Following the commitment of the five retailers to abide by the price promise, the OFT has closed its investigation.

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