NY attorney general announces settlement with ticket brokers

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, center, speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014 in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

NEW YORK (AP) — New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Tuesday announced a $2.76 million settlement with six ticket brokers as part of its investigation into the concert and sports ticketing industry.

“New Yorkers deserve a fairer ticket marketplace,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “Our office will continue to enforce New York’s ticket laws by investigating ticket brokers who are breaking our laws, and making them pay for their illegal acts.”

The settlement stems from an investigation detailed in a January report that found abuses and practices that prevented consumers from buying tickets at affordable prices or sometimes not at all.

Investigators found that third-party brokers resell tickets on sites like StubHub and TicketsNow at average margins of 49 percent above face-value and sometimes more than 10 times the price.

The New York Times reports the attorney general determined that the six brokers sold tickets in New York without a proper license and five of the brokers used software, called “ticket bots,” to quickly scoop up tickets for resale at huge markups, which is prohibited in New York.

The settlement requires the companies to stop using bots and to obtain proper licenses as ticket resellers.

In January, the attorney general also reached settlements with two ticket brokers operating without a reseller license. The settlements required one company to pay $80,000 and the other $65,000. They and their principals also must maintain a license.

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