The Better Business Bureau of Utah is focusing on exaggerated savings claims and markdowns in its ongoing crackdown on local advertising practices.

"You are not saving as much as the advertiser wants you to believe," said BBB President Russ Behrmann. "And you may be encouraging unethical advertising. You also hurt reputable vendors who are honest in their advertising."The national Code of Advertising says that, when retailers and manufacturers advertise a markdown, they must base their savings claims on the actual retail price of a product at their store or in the marketplace. Using unrealistic manufacturers' suggested retail prices, list prices or other fabrications that inflate or create the appearance of savings is unethical, and may be illegal, the BBB said.

Behrmann said he has sent letters to dozens of local businesses asking them to discontinue their practice of exaggerating savings.