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Lumo energy pays penalty of $10,800 for representations about retail gas tariff increase

Energy retailer Lumo Energy Australia Pty Ltd (Lumo) has paid a penalty of $10,800 following the issue of an infringement notice by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Lumo call centre staff made representations to a number of consumers in February 2016 that the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) was responsible for increases to Lumo’s retail gas tariffs when the rise was due to a commercial pricing decision made by Lumo.

Micro firms make highest business complaints to ACCC

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s latest Small Business in Focus report reveals that micro and small businesses made 7,000 complaints and enquiries from July 1 to December 31 2016.

“Over 60 per cent of business contacts were from micro enterprises of four or under employees, which isn’t surprising given that micro firms are the biggest group of businesses in Australia,” ACCC Acting Chair Dr Michael Schaper said.

IVF 'success rate' claims under the microscope

Several major IVF clinics have made changes to claims published on their websites about success rates following an Australian Competition and Consumer investigation into potentially false or misleading representations. 

“The ACCC reviewed website content from all major Australian IVF clinics and found that some made success-rate comparisons without adequate disclosure about, or qualification of, the nature of the data or graphics used to make the claim,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said. 

Businesses remove unfair contract terms before new law

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s new report into potentially unfair contract terms details its review of 46 contracts across seven industries, which resulted in a range of businesses making changes to their small business standard form contracts.

The ACCC will begin enforcing the new law this week [Nov 12], when consumer protections against unfair contract terms are extended to include up to 2 million Australian small businesses.

VSC undertakes to help improve extended warranty selling practices

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has accepted a court enforceable undertaking from Virginia Surety Company, Inc (VSC) after engaging with participants in the extended warranty industry following a review of extended warranty selling practices. 

“The ACCC has engaged with industry over concerns that certain marketing practices for extended warranties had the potential to mislead consumers about their true value beyond those rights and remedies already available to consumers under the Australian Consumer Law,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

Grocery update: AFGC Leaders Forum

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Chairman Rod Sims provides an update on grocery issues at the Australian Food & Grocery Council Leaders Forum in Canberra. He talks about the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct, misleading health claims, recent work in agriculture and the ACCC's role in assisting with competition issues and free trade agreements.