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An Exploration of Australian Petrol Demand: Unobservable Habits, Irreversibility and Some Updated Estimates

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  • ROBERT V. BREUNIG
  • CAROL GISZ

Abstract

We explore a methodological improvement to the standard dynamic demand model for petrol - a general model which allows for slowly evolving, unobservable habits. If this habit formation model is correct, then standard estimation techniques produce inconsistent estimates. We find price elasticities of -0.13 (short-run) and -0.20 (long-run). Importantly, standard techniques are misleading about the precision of elasticity estimates and the confidence interval around the long-run price elasticity is quite wide. We test for price irreversibility and find, in contrast to the USA, almost no evidence that petrol responds differently to price increases and decreases. Copyright © 2009 The Economic Society of Australia.

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Article provided by The Economic Society of Australia in its journal Economic Record.

Volume (Year): 85 (2009)
Issue (Month): 268 (03)
Pages: 73-91

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Handle: RePEc:bla:ecorec:v:85:y:2009:i:268:p:73-91

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  1. Perron, Pierre, 1989. "The Great Crash, the Oil Price Shock, and the Unit Root Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1361-1401, November.
  2. Dargay, Joyce & Gately, Dermot, 1997. "The demand for transportation fuels: Imperfect price-reversibility?," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 71-82, February.
  3. Christopher Knittel & Daniel Sperling, 2006. "Evidence of a Shift in the Short-Run Price Elasticity of Gasoline Demand," Working Papers 625, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  4. Baltagi, Badi H. & Griffin, James M., 1997. "Pooled estimators vs. their heterogeneous counterparts in the context of dynamic demand for gasoline," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 303-327, April.
  5. Espey, Molly, 1998. "Gasoline demand revisited: an international meta-analysis of elasticities," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 273-295, June.
  6. Drollas, Leonidas P., 1984. "The demand for gasoline : Further evidence," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 71-82, January.
  7. Baltagi, Badi H. & Griffin, James M., 1983. "Gasoline demand in the OECD : An application of pooling and testing procedures," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 117-137, July.
  8. John Dimitropoulos & Lester C. Hunt & Guy Judge, 2004. "Estimating Underlying Energy Demand Trends using UK Annual Data," Surrey Energy Economics Centre (SEEC), School of Economics Discussion Papers (SEEDS) 108, Surrey Energy Economics Centre (SEEC), School of Economics, University of Surrey.
  9. Daniel J. Graham & Stephen Glaister, 2002. "The Demand for Automobile Fuel: A Survey of Elasticities," Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, London School of Economics and University of Bath, vol. 36(1), pages 1-25, January.
  10. Donnelly, W A, 1982. "The Regional Demand for Petrol in Australia," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 58(163), pages 317-27, December.
  11. Lester C. Hunt & Yasushi Ninomiya, 2003. "Unravelling Trends and Seasonality: A Structural Time Series Analysis of Transport Oil Demand in the UK and Japan," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 63-96.
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Cited by:
  1. John Clark & Adam Hollis, 2013. "Tax-to-GDP: Past and Prospective Developments," Economic Roundup, Treasury, Australian Government, issue 2, pages 15-34, December.
  2. Scott, K. Rebecca, 2011. "Demand and Price Volatility: Rational Habits in International Gasoline Demand," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt2q87432b, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  3. Scott, K. Rebecca, 2012. "Rational habits in gasoline demand," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1713-1723.
  4. Willem H. Boshoff, 2011. "Gasoline, diesel fuel and jet fuel demand in South Africa," Working Papers 226, Economic Research Southern Africa.
  5. Li, Zheng & Rose, John M. & Hensher, David A., 2010. "Forecasting automobile petrol demand in Australia: An evaluation of empirical models," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 16-38, January.
  6. Valadkhani, Abbas, 2013. "Do petrol prices rise faster than they fall when the market shows significant disequilibria?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 66-80.
  7. Valadkhani, Abbas, 2013. "Modelling the terminal gate prices of unleaded petrol in Australia," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 233-243.

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