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Graham Awards


CMA releases cartel agents’ investigation details

The Competition and Markets Authority has released a 135 page document giving explicit details of its latest agency cartel investigation.

This includes emails, telephone calls and interviews with and between the agents at the centre of the scandal; it also refers to some agents and witnesses whose evidence was regarded as unreliable, and some who did not initially cooperate with the CMA's investigation.

Last month the CMA announced that three Berkshire estate agents had been fined more than £600,000 for illegally fixing the minimum commission rates they charged their customers.


The companies Michael Hardy, Prospect, Richard Worth, and a fourth company, Romans, broke competition law by running a cartel which set minimum commission rates for properties in Wokingham, Winnersh, Crowthorne, Bracknell and Warfield.

Today’s details give exhaustive explanation of the agencies’ activities and how the CMA conducted the probe - including visits to the agents’ offices, interviews with agents, so-called ‘state of play’ meetings and a leniency deal with one of the agents.

You can find the full document here.

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    Romans should kow better

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    • 23 January 2020 12:45 PM

    But what have the Romans ever done for us?

  • Bryan Mansell

    Romans should be applauded for their initial admission of the Cartel.

  • Matthew Payne

    There clearly needs to be a distinction made between the Romans management team of February 2018 who rightly approached the CMA and instigated the investigation thus affording them no fine under the leniency policy, for the actions of the Romans management team that created and helped maintain the Cartel from 2008 to 2015.


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