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Financial 411: The Rise of E-Readers

Thursday, May 26, 2011

North America's largest book show, BookExpo America, wrapped up Thursday at the Javits Center in Midtown Manhattan, and the makers of several e-readers unveiled their latest tablets:. Barnes & Nobles, which makes the Nook, and Toronto-based Kobo introduced touch screen e-readers.

WNYC's Ilya Marritz reports that people in the world of books are increasingly convinced that the future of reading will be digital. He spoke with Donna Hayes, the CEO of Harlequin, which publishes romance novels. She estimates that 12 percent of Harlequin readers now get their books on Amazon's Kindle. "They read a lot, they buy a lot, and they really don't want to have to wait to get that next book," she said.

Jim Milliot, the co-editorial director of Publishers Weekly, said the manufacturers of e-readers sent a "clear message" this week. "The takeaway is really that device manufacturers are aiming to make the devices easier for users to read on, and that the prices are coming down," he said.

Milliot discusses the latest devices introduced this week, and talks about the competition among e-bookstores, the marketplace where e-readers buy their books.

Markets

Tech stocks pushed markets higher on Thursday, with the Dow adding eight points, to close at 12,403. The Nasdaq gained 22 points, ending at 2,783. The S&P 500 settled at 1,326, after rising five points.

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