Procter & Gamble Co. and 10 other consumer product firms agreed to refund $4.2 million in the form of coupons to consumers in western New York state to settle charges that they conspired to eliminate coupons in that region. The agreement settled an antitrust lawsuit by the New York attorney general's office. None of the parties admitted wrongdoing. Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble said it had limited coupons in Rochester, Buffalo and Syracuse between 1995 and 1997 as part of a test. The attorney general's office deemed the test, in which other companies participated, a conspiracy because it restrained trade. The other companies named in the suit were Clorox Co., Colgate-Palmolive Co., Dial Corp., DowBrands, James River Paper Co., S.C. Johnson & Son, Pillsbury Co., Reckitt & Colman, Wegmans Food Markets Inc. and Conopco, a unit of Lever Bros. Co.
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