UK's Stansted airport being sold for $2.38 billion

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LONDON (AP) -- The company that owns London's Stansted airport says it is selling it to the Manchester Airports Group for 1.5 billion pounds ($2.38 billion.)

Airport operator Heathrow Airport Holdings, formerly known as BAA, had to sell Stansted and other airports after British competition authorities ruled that it had an unfair market advantage over rival operators.

The Competition Commission in 2009 ordered the operator to sell Stansted, London's third busiest airport. It had already sold airports in Gatwick and Edinburgh.

The deal announced Friday means that Heathrow Airport Holdings will be responsible for just four British airports -- Heathrow, Southampton, Aberdeen and Glasgow -- compared to an original seven it had.

The sale is expected to be completed by the end of February.